California Insurance

Ryan Wieland

New Member
Sep 8, 2017
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I know the codes about what is required for a motorized bike to be legal in California-

Basically...

Safety Gear
Bike Accessories
Registration
M2 License
Insurance

I have everything sorted out but the last one, and without insurance I can't take my bike in to upgrade from a permit to a license. However, my registration has the VIN number as 11 characters. I have tried Progressive, Geico, a local agent and State Farm all who cannot insure this freaking bike. California is requiring something that is seemingly impossible to do.

My question should be obvious, who have you all insured your motorized bicycles with in California? Especially if your VIN number is NOT 17 digits long, but instead if the VIN number is the number on the original bike frame.
 

crassius

Well-Known Member
Sep 30, 2012
4,032
156
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USA
looking at dmv reg form "Motorized Bicycle Instructions and Application (PDF) (REG 230)" I find that checkbox 3 disallows an MB with no autotrans to be registered - for about 10 years, I've not registered and none of my customers have registered

do as you care to if this doesn't appeal to you

I DO carry a 1mill personal umbrella policy tho.

I also have a numbering stamp set left over from the 60s when new motorcycle motors and frames had no vin stamps, so dealer put them on.
 
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Ryan Wieland

New Member
Sep 8, 2017
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Hm you seems to be right. The thing is, I bought it already registered. Should I just shrug and forget insurance?
 

Ryan Wieland

New Member
Sep 8, 2017
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I just want to have peace of mind when riding. I am trying to do everything as legal as possible but this is getting ridiculous.
 

Ryan Wieland

New Member
Sep 8, 2017
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I am unclear why having a single gear and no transmission makes it not a motorized bike. I think that is the only unclear thing here. The law is going for people who having multiple gears and must shift manually (dirt bikes), not single geared bikes. These are the current laws on book on their website.

Start with their current definition
Vehicle Code - VEH
DIVISION 1. WORDS AND PHRASES DEFINED [100 - 681]

( Division 1 enacted by Stats. 1959, Ch. 3. )
406.
(a) A “motorized bicycle” or “moped” is a two-wheeled or three-wheeled device having fully operative pedals for propulsion by human power, or having no pedals if powered solely by electrical energy, and an automatic transmission and a motor that produces less than 4 gross brake horsepower and is capable of propelling the device at a maximum speed of not more than 30 miles per hour on level ground.
(b) Every manufacturer of a motorized bicycle or moped, as defined in this section, shall provide a disclosure to buyers that advises buyers that their existing insurance policies may not provide coverage for these bicycles and that they should contact their insurance company or insurance agent to determine if coverage is provided. The disclosure shall meet both of the following requirements:
(1) The disclosure shall be printed in not less than 14-point boldface type on a single sheet of paper that contains no information other than the disclosure.
(2) The disclosure shall include the following language in capital letters:
“YOUR INSURANCE POLICIES MAY NOT PROVIDE COVERAGE FOR ACCIDENTS INVOLVING THE USE OF THIS BICYCLE. TO DETERMINE IF COVERAGE IS PROVIDED YOU SHOULD CONTACT YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY OR AGENT.”
(Amended by Stats. 2015, Ch. 568, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2016.)

Apparently you have technically needed to display a special plate on motorized bikes since 1980, hasn't changed.
Vehicle Code - VEH
DIVISION 3. REGISTRATION OF VEHICLES AND CERTIFICATES OF TITLE [4000 - 9808]

( Division 3 enacted by Stats. 1959, Ch. 3. )
CHAPTER 1. Original and Renewal of Registration; Issuance of Certificates of Title [4000 - 5506]
( Chapter 1 enacted by Stats. 1959, Ch. 3. )
ARTICLE 8.1. Motorized Bicycles [5030 - 5039]
( Article 8.1 added by Stats. 1980, Ch. 1070, Sec. 1. )
5030.
A motorized bicycle, as defined in Section 406, is required to display a special license plate issued by the department.
(Added by Stats. 1980, Ch. 1070, Sec. 1.)

That is all I could find having to do with insurance and registration. I could not find a reference to section 16430 (the financial responsibility/insurance section) anywhere. It seems like it needs to be registered but not insured.
 

crassius

Well-Known Member
Sep 30, 2012
4,032
156
63
USA
until they write a law that addresses these, I'm just riding my bicycle - I have a lot of out of state students at local college that can't go all the way home to get a motorcycle or moped license so ride without one in bike lane
 

curtisfox

Well-Known Member
Dec 29, 2008
5,157
1,578
113
minesota
I know the codes about what is required for a motorized bike to be legal in California-

Basically...

Safety Gear
Bike Accessories
Registration
M2 License
Insurance

I have everything sorted out but the last one, and without insurance I can't take my bike in to upgrade from a permit to a license. However, my registration has the VIN number as 11 characters. I have tried Progressive, Geico, a local agent and State Farm all who cannot insure this freaking bike. California is requiring something that is seemingly impossible to do.

My question should be obvious, who have you all insured your motorized bicycles with in California? Especially if your VIN number is NOT 17 digits long, but instead if the VIN number is the number on the original bike frame.
My thought would just use 000000's in front of your #.........................Curt
 

Tony01

Well-Known Member
Nov 28, 2012
1,389
826
113
sf bay area
Or just ride safe and don't crash into anybody. You may find yourself sliding the front tire more often but hey...
 

dogcatcher

Active Member
Nov 11, 2016
232
185
43
Texas
You can create a VIN number using info that means something to you. Some gunsmiths use date finished, that will give 8 digits, add their 3 initials. Then the number of that build. If it is the first, it would be zeros and a 1. Or as an example in todays date 09092017HAK000001 meaning it was completed 9 Sept 2017, initials, and number of build 00001.
 

Venice Motor Bikes

Custom Builder / Dealer/Los Angeles
Mar 20, 2008
6,616
424
83
Los Angeles, CA.
This whole CA registration thing has been gone over 1000 times!!

You don't need any insurance (& no one sells it anyways).


As far as registering it goes... just use the 'motorized bicycle' reg form & use the bicycles serial #s for the VIN & engine # if you have a 2-stroke; (49cc 4-stroke actually have serial #s on the engine)
 
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Vinni The Pooch

New Member
Sep 10, 2017
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I know the codes about what is required for a motorized bike to be legal in California-

Basically...

Safety Gear
Bike Accessories
Registration
M2 License
Insurance

I have everything sorted out but the last one, and without insurance I can't take my bike in to upgrade from a permit to a license. However, my registration has the VIN number as 11 characters. I have tried Progressive, Geico, a local agent and State Farm all who cannot insure this freaking bike. California is requiring something that is seemingly impossible to do.

My question should be obvious, who have you all insured your motorized bicycles with in California? Especially if your VIN number is NOT 17 digits long, but instead if the VIN number is the number on the original bike frame.
 

Vinni The Pooch

New Member
Sep 10, 2017
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0
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Your missing the Big Picture Ryan! On the 49cc bike, With working Pedals, and who's Speed on level ground is NOT Designed to exceed 20mph, you fall under the "b" section (§) category, hence, No license or any registration is NEENED at all. If you are seeking the "a" (§) category 2-time TAG, THEN your problem's Start, not to mention, good luck finding an engine California "approves" for street use at all?
Insurance is mot required for these bikes, a license is not required for a regular nicycle except maybe to i.d. the bike to prevent theft? Ooening cans of worms should be reseverved for Fishing! Thought's?
 

Barnfresh

Member
Sep 5, 2011
202
6
18
Nor-Cal
Sorry but the old (b) section that used to exempt 20 mph motorized electric bicycles from drivers license and insurance is long gone.

I know the California DMV is slow to get things changed on their website (DMV dot org even got the update) but California Vehicle Code 406 has changed.

SEC. 2. Section 406 of the Vehicle Code is amended to read:

406. (a) A “motorized bicycle” or “moped” is a two-wheeled or three-wheeled device having fully operative pedals for propulsion by human power, or having no pedals if powered solely by electrical energy, and an automatic transmission and a motor that produces less than 4 gross brake horsepower and is capable of propelling the device at a maximum speed of not more than 30 miles per hour on level ground.

(b) Every manufacturer of a motorized bicycle or moped, as defined in this section, shall provide a disclosure to buyers that advises buyers that their existing insurance policies may not provide coverage for these bicycles and that they should contact their insurance company or insurance agent to determine if coverage is provided. The disclosure shall meet both of the following requirements:

(1) The disclosure shall be printed in not less than 14-point boldface type on a single sheet of paper that contains no information other than the disclosure.

(2) The disclosure shall include the following language in capital letters:

“YOUR INSURANCE POLICIES MAY NOT PROVIDE COVERAGE FOR ACCIDENTS INVOLVING THE USE OF THIS BICYCLE. TO DETERMINE IF COVERAGE IS PROVIDED YOU SHOULD CONTACT YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY OR AGENT.”

https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201520160AB1096