Today, cycling has been a popular means of transportation for its economic and health benefits. The number of bikers in the United States has significantly increased over the years and around 66.5 million Americans rode their bicycles in 2016.
Bikes can be expensive. While there are those in the low-cost range of $80 to $300, high-end bikes can cost a consumer about $1000 to $5000. For this reason, cyclists are very much interested in ensuring them against theft or loss, or when they hurt somebody while riding their bike.
Bicycle Insurance Coverage
Your bike is covered under the personal property section of the insurance policy with your homeowner and renter. This means that they will reimburse you, after paying the deductible, if your bike has been stolen or damaged by hurricane or fire, and any other disasters listed in the policy. Other than this, homeowner and renter insurance policies also protect you from the harm you caused someone else or their property. In case you injure someone while riding your bike, the homeowner’s policy includes no-fault medical coverage. Your personal injuries are not covered by this policy, though, as you cannot be liable to yourself. Instead, personal injuries due to bike accidents can be covered by your health insurance.
If you think you need insurance other than your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy, there are insurance policies specifically for cyclists now. The need for specialty insurance depends on the coverage of your current insurance policy and the value of your bike. These specialty insurance companies offer wider coverage and features. Some of them may cover crash damages and insurance for cycling apparels.
Claiming for Bicycle Insurance
Making a claim would really depend on the type of insurance you have and the coverage included in the policy. If your insurance policy covers replacement cost for a lost bike, you can expect to receive the value you need to replace your old bike. In terms of basic claims settlement, you can either get the actual value of the bike, which is the depreciated value at the time of loss; or the replacement cost or the value to replace it. Also note that the deductible will be deducted before the value is paid out, so it is possible that you may not even get compensation if your deductible exceeds the value payable.
To make future claims easier, it would help to add your bike to your assets, as this can help speed up the claims process. Make sure to also keep the receipts for your bicycles and other accessories, apparels, and equipment.
Above all, it is important to keep your bike safe and secure at all times. It is good to have bike insurance, but it is a claim you don’t want to make, especially if your bike is part of your daily life and your livelihood. Here are some of the precautions you can take:
- Always lock up your bike, and make sure that it is in a visible and well-lit area.
- Lock your bikes to fixed, immovable objects.
- Do not lock your bike to the same location at all times, as thieves may notice the pattern. Change locations from time to time.
- Register your bike to the National Bike Registry so you can potentially trace it in case of theft.
Have you been involved in a bicycle accident? Contact us at Hogan Injury for expert legal advice.
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