COVID-19 came in as the unprecedented calamity that at the very least disrupted people’s lives and at the worst uprooted it entirely. None of us was truly prepared to face this herculean challenge, yet we have come a long way, albeit suffering losses in our own ways.
As the normalcy of life faded, our priorities saw tectonic shifts too. Things that mattered once felt insignificant & the mundane rose in value. Amidst these shifting tides, deadlines & documentations of the financial nature found themselves shelved for a while from our minds and reasonably so.
Among them, vehicle Insurance saw some of the most lapses due to missed deadlines. But it was understandable. In fact, the Finance Ministry extended the last date of renewal for various policies like car & bike insurances that faced lapses between 25th March 2020 to 3rd May 2020. The new deadline was set to 15th May 2020. However, in spite of this, a large section of people could not get their two-wheeler insurance renewed owing to either ‘fear of stepping out’ in the pandemic chaos when it came to offline means or simply the ‘lack of awareness’ in the online renewal of two wheeler insurance.
If you are among those whose bike insurance lapsed during this difficult period or know of anyone else affected, read ahead to figure out what exactly can be done to step out of this pickle. But before we venture ahead, let us shine some light on the basics:
What does one mean by a lapsed bike insurance policy?
Any two-wheeler insurance policy that misses its renewal date is labelled a ‘lapsed policy’. Once lapsed, the policy is synonymous to having ‘no policy’ at all. Why? Because a lapsed insurance policy means you can no more reap the benefits & privileges that you earlier could.
In case of lapsed bike insurances, a grace period of 15-30 days is granted before it is considered completely void. In such a case, you will be forced to purchase an entirely new bike insurance policy that may come with its own share of problems like increased premium & the hassle of going through the entire documentation process all over again.
What hurts the most is that beyond the 90 day period, your entire No Claim Bonus (NCB), that you must have cautiously accumulated over the years, is lost forever. The unfortunate cherry on top is being exposed to & unprotected against risks like third-party liabilities. Basically, if your two-wheeler meets with an accident, the entire financial burden will fall on your shoulder.
How to renew lapsed bike insurance?
To avoid a plethora of nuisances and dangers, ensure to always renew your two wheeler insurance before it lapses. The good news is it’s not all grim & gloom. Renewing your lapsed bike insurance policy is quite an easy process.
There are two common ways of getting this done.
- Online renewal of two-wheeler insurance
- Offline renewal of two-wheeler insurance
Considering the new normal of recommended distancing & precautions, getting two-wheeler insurance online is not only recommended by most insurers but is the fastest one too. Sparing you the hassle of waiting endlessly at your insurer’s office, the online renewal of two-wheeler insurance gets the job done in a few easy steps. The steps to follow for bike insurance online renewal in India:
- Keep all necessary documents like personal & insurance details handy
- Log in to the designated website of your insurance provider
- Fill in all the details as applicable
- Make the payment via various modes available
And voila, your lapsed policy is lapsed no more!
Note that, in certain cases, your insurer may require you to submit the inspection certificate of your bike once again.
Let’s say, for some reason, the online renewal of two-wheeler insurance is not working out for you, you can also renew your lapsed bike insurance offline by visiting the nearest branch of your insurer’s office. Akin to getting two-wheeler insurance online, ensure that you carry all proper documents, both personal & insurance-related. Make a special note that you’ll also need to carry a few passport-size photos, and the inspection certificate of your bike is mandatory in this case.
It is to be noted that, in case of both online and offline bike insurance renewal, it is not compulsory to renew all add-on covers. It is entirely your call to either continue with the same or add/remove a few.
Important Note: Failing to renew your bike insurance policy is a punishable offence under the Motor Vehicles Act of 1986. Carrying a lapsed bike insurance or not having any insurance can attract fines or even imprisonment in some cases.
How to prevent the lapse of your bike insurance?
They say prevention is better than cure, and it holds true in this for sure. So, how to prevent the lapse from happening?
The short here answer is – Just keep renewing your two-wheeler insurance on time.
While the ownership of ensuring timely bike insurance renewal lies primarily on your shoulders, the insurers also take a few measures to ensure you do not forget the bike insurance renewal deadline. Most insurers often send out periodical reminders to their customers via texts, calls & emails when the expiry date approaches near.
Additionally, you must also set effective reminders to ensure the plan is foolproof and you renew your bike insurance well before the expiry date.
Apart from the obvious point of being more vigilant, a unique approach is to simply opt for a long-term bike insurance policy. Insurers can often offer coverage of up to 3 years in such cases, thereby drastically reducing the chances of your policy lapsing.
The bottom line is this – owning a bike insurance policy is legally mandatory and financially supportive. Your policy not only ensures you are covered against certain liabilities but also makes you a responsible, law-abiding citizen.
What the world has gone through in the last few months is nothing short of a sci-fi apocalyptic movie. We are now facing challenges we never considered worthy of our attention. However, in times like these, it is paramount to take all precautions necessary not only for your physical but mental & financial wellbeing as well, and ensuring timely bike insurance renewal is one thing off your checklist. It’s not like you don’t have enough problems to deal with already!