The decision of the European Court of Justice on the insurance obligation for electric bicycles

On October 18th, the European Court of Justice ruled on the mandatory insurance requirement for pedal-assist electric bicycles.

In fact, while Italy is moving towards imposing third-party liability insurance for electric scooters, the European Court appears to go in the opposite direction as regards e-bikes.

The proceeding was brought by a Belgian court with regard to a traffic accident between a car and an electric bicycle. Once the lack of responsibility on the side of the car driver had been confirmed, the question arose as to whether the pedal-assist electric bicycle should be considered a vehicle subject to mandatory liability insurance.

The Luxembourg judges declared that electric bicycles don’t fall under the mandatory insurance obligation for motor vehicles, as they are not solely powered by mechanical force and don’t represent a source or cause of damages subject to compulsory third-party liability insurance.