What Type of Insurance Covers Bicycle Accidents?

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A black car and an overturned bike after a bicycle accident in North Carolina.

When it comes to your bike, several insurance policies may be beneficial and cover you if you are involved in an accident while riding. In many cases, if you are involved in an accident involving an insured driver, the other driver’s auto liability insurance will cover personal injury up to their coverage limit. Additionally, your medical insurance should also cover injuries sustained in an accident.

Does Home Insurance Cover Bicycle Accidents in North Carolina?

Renters’ or homeowner’s insurance may cover certain types of bicycle accidents. If your bicycle is of a certain value and is included on your home insurance policy, it may be covered in some accidents. Other coverages may only cover the bike if it has been stolen. Whether or not your accident is covered will depend on your coverage and the circumstances surrounding the accident.

Should I Get Bike Insurance?

Whether or not you should obtain bike insurance depends on how invested in riding you intend to be. If you only plan to pull your bike out a few times a year for local, casual rides, you will not likely need bicycle insurance. However, suppose you are an avid cyclist who intends to invest in a quality bike, go on road trips, or use a bike for competition or regular transportation. In that case, you should strongly consider investing in a bike insurance policy. If your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance covers your bike, the coverage is often minimal and may not cover all types of accidents.

While on the road, a bicycle is considered a vehicle. Ensure that you know the rules of the road before merging into traffic. If you are involved in a bike accident, ensure that you receive medical attention immediately and contact an experienced lawyer to assist you. Car insurance will often cover bicycle accidents and, in some cases, may cover medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering related to an accident involving a bicycle and car. However, keep in mind that if you simply wreck your bike while riding, it is unlikely your accident will be covered by car insurance.

Does Auto Insurance Cover Bicycle Accidents?

As mentioned, car insurance coverage can cover collisions involving a bicycle and a vehicle. However, car insurance will not cover an accident you got into alone. If another driver injures you due to their negligence, the other driver’s insurance coverage may cover you. MedPay is another type of insurance that may cover your medical expenses in the event you are hit by a vehicle while riding your bicycle. Additionally, you may be covered in a hit-and-run scenario if you have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage.

What Happens If I Hit Someone on a Bicycle?

If you have accidentally hit someone while driving your vehicle, your liability insurance should cover the cost of the accident, no matter if the injured party was riding in a car, scooter, ATV, motorcycle, or bicycle. In addition, your insurance should cover you up to the limits of your policy if you are held liable for another party’s injuries, which may include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.

In a collision, your car insurance should cover all of the following:

  •   The cost of repairing or replacing the damaged bike
  •   Lost wages
  •   Medical expenses
  •   Pain and suffering
  •   The cost of repairing damage to your own vehicle (assuming you have collision coverage)

All of the injured parties’ costs are covered by liability insurance, which is required by law in most states. Liability insurance consists of two key components:

Bodily Injury (BI) Liability Coverage

This type of liability coverage will cover medical expenses up to the policy coverage amount. If you injure another party while driving your vehicle, such as accidentally hitting a bicyclist, your bodily injury liability coverage will cover these expenses.

Property Damage Liability Coverage

This type of liability coverage will cover the cost of repairing another party’s property damage that resulted from an accident. For example, if you hit a cyclist, this type of coverage will cover the cost of repairing or replacing the other party’s bicycle and other equipment, such as their clothing, helmet, or protective equipment.

Collision Coverage

Collision coverage is an optional coverage that a person may choose to carry. This coverage will cover the cost of repairing your vehicle should it become damaged in an accident. For example, if your car has been damaged due to hitting a cyclist, collision coverage will cover your vehicle repair costs up to your policy coverage amount.

What If Someone Hits Me While Riding a Bicycle?

Auto insurance will likely cover your injuries if you are hit by a vehicle while riding your bicycle. Depending on what coverages you and the other party hold, you may be covered through MedPay insurance, underinsured or uninsured motorists coverage, or liability insurance. The insurance company may investigate the accident to determine who was at fault. If the other driver was at fault, they could be liable for your accident-related expenses.

Steps To Take After A Bicycle Accident

It is important to note that every action you take following a bike accident may significantly impact your options and rights in the days and months to follow. The following steps are suggested to help you protect yourself legally following a bicycle accident and preserve evidence.

  • Following a bike accident, the first thing you should do is seek medical attention for anyone injured. If necessary, request an ambulance when phoning the police following the accident. If you do not need to be taken in via ambulance, see a medical professional as soon as possible following the accident, even if you feel ok. Some severe injuries may not present with symptoms for hours or days following the accident.
  • Contact the police so that they may arrive at the scene of the accident and take a report. Do not leave the scene of the accident until the police arrive.
  • If possible, take photographs of the accident scene, including the vehicles, your bike, the surrounding area, and any injuries.
  • Obtain the names, addresses, and phone numbers of any witnesses.
  • Take your bike into a bike shop to assess and document the damage done to your bike,
  • Report your accident to your car insurer.
  • Obtain a copy of the police report when available.
  • Seek advice from an experienced bicycle accident lawyer on the best course of action.

North Carolina Bicycle Accident Attorney

Bike accidents can be confusing and stressful. The experienced attorneys at Tatum & Atkinson, ‘the Heavy Hitters’, specialize in car accidents, including bicycle or motorcycle crashes. These accidents can be lucrative for bicycle accident injury victims. An experienced attorney will have the know-how to maximize compensation for your pain and suffering, injuries, lost wages, and other expenses. In addition, if you or a loved one were hit by a vehicle while riding your bike, it is essential to know that the other driver’s insurance company may hire an attorney to diminish or deny your claim. Here at Tatum & Atkinson, the ‘Heavy Hitters’, we accept bicycle accident cases on a contingency fee basis. This means you will never have to pay attorneys fees out of pocket, and we will not get paid unless you win. Contact us today by calling us at (800) 529-0804 or contacting us online  to receive your free case evaluation to see what we can do to help you.