Do You Need Bike Insurance?

"It's the people who really have the higher-end bikes," Schechter said. "The whole idea for this is to get the cyclist back on the road as soon as possible. It covers the damage to the bike if the bike is inoperable."

Specifically, the coverage seems most appealing to cyclists who might crash their own bike and have an expensive ride that they would struggle financially to repair out-of-pocket. The additional medical coverage, accidental death coverage, theft insurance and other perks of a Clipp membership are a bonus--a very nice bonus if a cyclist doesn't have other policies like homeowner's or medical.

However, Clipp's membership is not all-encompassing. It does not offer liability insurance and it does not offer UIM or UM protection if you're involved in an accident with an uninsured at-fault motorist.

More: How to Protect Your Rights as a Cyclist

Other countries have bike insurance options, but Clipp is one of the few organizations in the United States that offers cyclists specific protection.

If you don't have bike insurance, or if Clipp isn't offered in your state, your other coverage (if you have any) can fill in many of the voids depending on which state you live in. According to Seattle-based cycling attorney John Duggan:

  • In a bike/car accident where the vehicle is at fault, the vehicle's auto insurance should cover the cyclist's medical costs and property damage. If the vehicle is uninsured or underinsured, your auto insurance's UM or UIM coverage kicks in.
  • In a bike/car accident where the cyclist is at fault, a homeowner's or renter's insurance policy could cover liability claims. An injury to the cyclist may be covered by the automobile's personal injury protection coverage no matter who's at fault. Homeowner's or renter's insurance may or may not cover bike damage.
  • In a solo bike accident, health insurance would cover your medical expenses. Homeowner's or renter's insurance may or may not cover bike damage.

All in all, the different options that may or may not come through leaves some uncertainty. Clipp can fill that void with some protection for those who are frequently in the saddle.

More: The Dangers of Passing on the Right

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