Bicycle and Pedestrian Accident Questions

In Portland, bicycling and walking are two highly common modes of transportation for people. It's common you'll see congested bike "traffic" during rush hour, particularly when the weather is nice. With so many people biking and walking around, it is that much more important for cyclists, pedestrians and drivers to be vigilant of potential dangers. Please read the questions below and refer to the general Bicycle Accidents page. If you have further questions or if you or a loved one have been injured while on a bike or walking, do not hesitate to contact me right away at 503-546-0461 or jpl@pdxinjury.com to start your healing process and protecting your rights.

 

I don't own a car. Can I even get auto insurance?


Yes, as long as you are a licensed driver. Some national insurers offer insurance for people who do not own their own cars, though these policies typically must be bought through a broker or local insurance agent. Coverage such as this is affordable and provides the same type of protection as most other auto insurance.


Do I need auto insurance if I always bike or walk?


Yes, because it is still essential to have insurance coverage to protect yourself and others. The vulnerability of not having the protective barrier a vehicle provides makes carrying insurance even more essential. In Oregon, the coverage amount of your uninsured/underinsured (UM/UIM) insurance is the same as your liability insurance. Make sure you have a valid driverís license (even though you're not driving), and the more coverage you have, the more protected you are. A higher insurance limit means you and anyone you might injure are more protected.


Will my auto insurance cover my bike if it's stolen?


 No, but your homeowners/renters insurance might.


How do I get my bike repaired if someone hit me and damaged it?


Any damages to your bike or property are covered by the at-fault party's auto insurance. Once you file a claim with his or her insurance, take your property to a bicycle shop for a damage estimate. If the bike is a total loss (the cost of fixing it is more than its estimated current value), the shop should provide you with the bike's value, as a used bike with the components it had, at the time before and after it was hit.


I was injured by a motor vehicle while walking/riding my bike. Do I still have PIP coverage?


Yes, PIP covers pedestrians and cyclists who are injured in an accident involving a motor vehicle. If you have both auto and health insurance, your own PIP insurance will first cover your bills. Any bills left will then be paid by your health insurance. Other remaining bills, such as co-pays, can then be submitted to the at-fault driverís PIP insurance. If you do not have auto or health insurance, the at-fault driverís PIP insurance should cover you.


I was injured by a motor vehicle while walking/riding my bike and the driver was uninsured. What should I do?


If you have auto insurance, your UM/UIM coverage will cover you. In this case, your auto insurance is basically acting as the at-fault party's insurance (if he or she had any). If you and the at-fault party are both uninsured, file a police report right away. If you have medical insurance, that will cover your medical bills. If you do not have medical insurance, you can try finding a doctor who offers payment plans or will treat you at a reduced cost. If the at-fault party hit you while committing a crime (e.g., assault, driving under the influence), then you might be able to have some or all of your costs paid by the Oregon Crime Victims' Fund.