Should I Get Bicycle Insurance?
Updated: Nov 9, 2021
As a lawyer specializing in helping injured cyclists and cycling law I am frequently asked “Do I need to purchase bike insurance?”
The question is a complicated one, and because of that the safest answer is “Yes”.
There are a huge variety of insurance products on the market. Before you purchase an insurance policy it is important to establish exactly what you are trying to insure and why.
The primary types of insurance available for cyclists are:
Theft and damage coverage.
First party personal injury coverage (protects you if you are involved in a crash).
Third party liability coverage (covers you for claims that are made against you if you cause a crash).
All three coverages are important, but the amount of coverage that you need depends heavily on your personal circumstances.
For instance, if you have basic home or rental insurance you may already have third party liability coverage and some coverage for your bicycle repair or replacement. However, most home policies have very low limits and a large deductible.
If you rely on a standard home insurance policy you may find that if your bike is stolen you are vastly underinsured.
If you have an expensive bike you should either specifically register your bike with your insurance company or contact a company like The Bicycle Broker Inc. The Bicycle Broker Inc. offers purposefully designed policies for cyclists covering a wide range of biking related risks.
Many cyclists think about insuring their bikes and themselves, but much less time thinking about “third party” liability coverage. If you were riding and you accidentally struck a pedestrian or another cyclist, you want coverage in place.
Accident claims can be expensive. You do not want to find yourself responsible and uninsured. Again, many home insurance policies cover bike crashes but there are numerous exclusions.
You may want to consider additional coverage through a professional broker with knowledge of bike related risks.
If you are a cyclist who is concerned about insurance my best advice is to speak to a trusted insurance broker. Tell them what you want to protect and determine what type and the amount of coverage that is right for you. Remember, you buy insurance hoping you never need to use it. But should you crash or lose your bike to theft, you will be happy that you were proactive.
Our goal is to better equip the cycling community with information and access to justice. Ride safe and with the clarity of knowing The Biking Lawyer LLP has got your back if you are injured in a crash. Cyclists representing cyclists.
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***Important to note***
The Ontario Cycling Association offers insurance in practice or competition organized by the OCA. Many cycling clubs and their members are also covered. Shout out to Lap Dogs Cycling Club: https://www.lapdogs.ca/risk-management
*We recognize that buying insurance is an economic privilege not afforded to all cyclists. To that end we believe insurance is an option but not the solution to safe cycling.