unicycle insurance

I was wondering if anyone could tell me were I might be able to acquire insurance to teach unicycling in the USA, more specifically New Jersey

The power of a written release, in court is substantial

You might want to pm billham on this. He has been doing a lot of research on getting a club insurance. If you are in a position to get umbrella coverage through your insurance company that should cover you, and is relatively cheap. Until our club has an official status and buys its own insurance, that is what I will be doing.

We have a $1M policy for our club through Cincinnati Insurance Company at a great rate. Their number is (513) 870-2278. Or if you’d like to talk directly to the agent who wrote the policy, Query Insurance Company here in Rochelle, (815) 562-4152. Ask for Jim Beardin about the policy for The Unicycle University.

We also took out a family personal umbrella policy through our own agent just in case. We figured since, as club directors, we could potentially be included in a law suit should something happen, it was best to be better covered and prepared.


Is TUU a corporation? What is the annual $$$ for the insurance policy? Also do you know how your agent classified the club? Many insurance companies don’t understand how unlikely an injury is compared to other sports, and the perception that we are high risk could put us in an expensive catagory. This is so new/small the actuaries(sp) probably don’t have numbers yet.

No, our club is classified as a 503(c) non-profit organization.

How the agent categorized our club is what caused us the most problem from the start. All insurance companies we talked to up until Cincinnati saw our group as extremely high risk with very high potential for injury. I had to lobby pretty hard through our agent claiming that unicycling for the most part (for what we do) is a slow speed sport, not a big potential for tangling in the equipment and falling, etc.

In our first year, our policy was $180 per year. The second year, the insurance company jumped our cost to $380 per year. Bait and switch if you ask me. Obviously, I went a-searchin’ for alternatives. We found Cincinnati through Query Insurance and the annual cost for the past two years now is $150. I hesitated at first to give out our price for the policy here because we are very close friends with agent Jim Beardin and the Query clan that own the business and I wasn’t sure how much influence that had on our price. I didn’t want anyone else who went to Query or Cincinnati to be disappointed if their price wasn’t the same. But, for the sake of education of the public and especially the insurance companies of and about our sport, let’s all get the best price for insurance we can get.

That brings up another question. For those of you who have clubs, what is your take on the IRS reporting requirements for clubs and club income?


I have been doing a lot of research on all of this stuff, and have a few questions, and some info. I think Billham will be very interested in your policy. This may make it much more reasonable for the rest of us clubs to get reasonable rates.

As for Non Profit status, it is technically a form of Corporation, just a Not for Profit. It has a lot of benefits, but the biggest drawback seems to be the IRS reporting. There are actual %'s of the corporate income that have to come from general fundraising, and not just the officers of the club or one entity. There is a lot of bookeeping that needs to be maintained to keep your non profit status. I think in the long run it is worth it.

One thing that I would like to see clubs with Non Profit status start doing, is going after corporate donations, and grants. What we do is unique and highly visible. Seems like a no brainer to me. Once we have a template for this type of fundraising all clubs should be able to use it in order to improve their finacial stability, and grow their organizations.

I will defenitely give your guy a call, even though he may not be able to write a policy out of state, just the wording of he policy may be critical in getting better rates. Glad you did the work to help the rest of us lost soles Bruce.


Our club has been 501c for and has had insurance for many years. (I’ve only been with them the past few years). I think our policy is $1mil. in coverage and about $350 per year. I need to check into coverage for officers now that Bruce mentioned it.

As for teaching. If you are doing it on your own, voluntarily, and without compensation, your homeowner liability policy might cover you. If it is just you and you get paid you may be able to get an endorsement on your homeowner policy for limited business pursuits. But if it is a club or serious business pursuit you probably need specific coverage.

Notice I said “might” and “may” and “probably”. Check with you agent and insurance company to be sure. I’m just a property adjuster, why the heck am I posting on a liability question anyway. :thinking:

I’ve always wondered if it was pronounced liability or lie-ability. :slight_smile:


You got that right. One of my dad’s favorite quotes:

“The first liar doesn’t stand a chance.”

Too true.

The first to present his case seems right, till another comes forward and questions him. - Proverbs

This tax exempt stuff is very confusing. I have done some reading and have come to some conclusions. Don’t quote me on these. Any comments are welcome. Also, I was treasurer for a tax exempt 501(c)3 for 2 years.

  1. A “non-profit” designation does not necessarily mean tax-exempt.
  2. A “non-profit” organization does not have to file a return with the IRS unless their income is above a certain amount (like $25,000). Or maybe you send in the return and just check the box that your income is below the limit so you don’t have to include any dollar amounts. However, if you exceed the limit, someone’s comment about record keeping is true, you better have good records of where your money comes from and where it goes.

Memphis Unicycle Club would be interested in how the “official” clubs went about filing for “non-profit” status. Is there a thread about this (I haven’t looked). Filing for non-profit status would be a good thread.


You probably should get someone that works for the IRS to help you with that.:wink:

As for the filing, I have found a couple ways to do it. You can go traditional and use a Lawyer or a CPA. Prepare to be smacked with a bill that will guarantee your non profit staus…even if you are a for profit entity. Second use an online processor like Legalzoom.com. This option brings the price down considerably depending on what you are willing to do yourself. Third get a book like Non Profits for Dummies(No Joke! Check Amazon $19.95) and it comes with software for all the forms. The last, and most attractive to me, is to find an attorney who is willing to donate services to the organization, once your a non profit his donated services should be able to be written off. (win/win) The last was what I suggested to Tommy last year.

Carol Mclean is working on several projects for the USA. One of those is establishing a Club. Anything we find out or learn as we set up our clubs should be forwarded to her. This will make it easier for future clubs to get the ball rolling. Billham and I have been going back and forth on this for a while, and he has a bunch of good info as well. Bottom line is, I have already been sued once and anything and everthing I can do to minimize my liability is a good thing. I think Bill is a little more concerned about litigation than I am, but be sure I am concerned. There are a lot of people just looking for a way to make an easy buch as I am sure Unibriar can attest. I don’t want to be their source again.

Here is Carols email if you have something to ad to her FAQ for setting up a club. If you PM me I will send you what she sent me. Please don’t berage her with e-mails unless it is helping her out. Carol.McLean at comcast dot net obviously I used at instead of @ and dot instead of . for those that aren’t familiar with disguising an e-mail address.