“Stacking” only an issue when you have two insurance companies
To avoid any ongoing confusion, I would like to update information on the law in Pennsylvania which requires insurance companies to offer uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage and, depending on the situation, to offer the ability to “stack” these coverages.
In other words, if you have more than one vehicle on a single policy of insurance, you are entitled to double or triple (“stack”) the amount of UM/UIM benefits available, depending on the number of vehicles you own. The only way to give up this right is to sign a waiver indicating that you wish to reject the ability to stack the coverages.
If you have signed these waivers of “stacking” then the prohibition on stacking the coverages, whether your vehicles are insured with either one or two different insurance companies, has been upheld by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania.
Q: Can I stack my automobile coverages on top of my motorcycle coverages if all of my vehicles are insured with the same insurance company, even though my insurance carrier chose to write two separate policies of insurance placing my automobile(s) on one policy, and my motorcycle(s) on another?
A: State Farm is the only company I am currently aware of that allows “stacking” in this situation.
Recently the Supreme Court agreed to review the Superior Court of Pennsylvania’s decision known as GEICO v. Ayers and upheld the prohibition of stacking automobile insurance onto motorcycle insurance even though all of the vehicles were insured with the same company and both policies indicated that the stacking option was chosen by Mr. Ayers.
In this case, the Superior Court allowed GEICO to rely upon the “household exclusion”, written into their automobile policy to prohibit Mr. Ayers, who was injured while operating his motorcycle, to stack his automobile benefits on top of his motorcycles’ underinsured motorist benefits.
Unfortunately, the Supreme Court decision held that unless stacking was purchased and the autos and motorcycles are on the same policy, then stacking your UM/UIM coverage from bike to autos will not work. The only way to avoid this from happening to you is to either switch insurance companies and find a company that will put your motorcycle on the same policy as your automobiles and purchase the “stacking” option for the entire policy.
Pennsylvania Motorcycle Accident Lawyer’s Dream
For the first time in a long time, I am handling a unique case. It is a very serious Pennsylvania motorcycle accident for a client who had two bikes and three automobiles all insured with Erie Insurance, and all on the same policy. To my surprise, when I read the policy, sure enough, all five vehicles were eligible for stacking!!!!
In practical terms, my client went from having $100,000 in un/underinsured coverage to $500,000 in coverage, all at the cost of less then $100 a year!
I hope you find this information informative, if you have questions contact Pennsylvania motorcycle accident attorney Lee D. Gaber, Esquire at 888-292-5352 (888-CYCLE-LAW) toll free.