Can Not Wearing a Helmet Affect My Motorcycle Accident Claim?
Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Some of the most serious and life-threatening motorcycle accidents involve a rider who was not wearing a helmet. This is why a lot of states have helmet laws. Even with laws in place, too many riders take off without proper protection from a helmet. If you happened to be in an accident that was caused by another driver and you didn’t have a helmet on, how does that affect your insurance claim or lawsuit against the other driver?
Chances are, if you try to sue the other party for causing the accident, his or her lawyer is going to come back with the fact you didn’t have a helmet on. While that may be true, not wearing a helmet typically isn’t the reason someone gets in an accident. There’s almost always another reason the accident occurred. Because of that, the other party may hold most of the fault, but the court may conclude you were partially at fault for your injuries.
For example, if you were following the speed limit, going through a green light, and someone driving a sedan ran a red light and hit you, the other driver would be responsible for your motorcycle damages and some of your medical bills. If you received head trauma and weren’t wearing a helmet, though, the other party might argue at least the head trauma was your own fault. In such a case, you may get compensated for property damage and any medical bills related to the rest of your body, but not compensated for any head injuries.
States Without Universal Helmet Laws
There are some states that don’t have universal helmet laws. In those states, it may be more difficult for the other party to argue you held partial fault for the accident. Other states require helmets for drivers under a certain age, such as 21, but anyone older than 21 does not need a helmet. In those states, liability might be a consideration of age when it comes to the person not wearing a helmet.
Even as a passenger on a motorcycle, you are entitled to as many rights as a passenger in a car. If someone caused an accident you were in, you are entitled to compensation. The same helmet rules hold true, however. This is one reason why, regardless of whether you’re a driver or a passenger, you should always wear a helmet when on a motorcycle.
Getting a Lawyer Involved
As you can see, laws vary by state and different situations can get complicated. If you were in a motorcycle accident and weren’t wearing a helmet, it may benefit you to get a lawyer involved. Call a lawyer, like a motorcycle accident lawyer from Wiseman Bray PLLC, right away to get started.