Motorcycle Helmets and Liability for an Accident: Learn How They Are Involved
When it comes to being injured in a motorcycle accident, the terms of seeking compensation are not the same as they are for other vehicle accident such as a car accident. One of the complications that can arise is the motorcycle rider not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash. Learn how it can impact the case and what to do if you run into this issue.
California has universal helmet laws
California, along with nearly 20 other states, has universal helmet laws. This means that everyone is required to wear a helmet when they ride a motorcycle. It does not matter how experienced they are or how old they are – they are required by law to wear a motorcycle when riding. Of course, this does not mean they always do.
The sad truth is that motorcycle accidents are much more likely to result in catastrophic injuries compared to other accidents. This is due for a number of reasons, including the fact that motorcycle riders are not as protected as other people on the road. If the rider chose not to wear a helmet and suffered a catastrophic injury, does their decision make a difference in determining fault? The answer may be more complicated than you think.
Wearing a helmet can have a hugely positive impact
It is hard to estimate how many people riding motorcycles actually wear their helmets. However, we do know that more than half of the people who died in fatal motorcycle accidents were not wearing their helmets when they were in their accident.
We also know that wearing a helmet can have a huge impact on how likely a head injury is and how serious that injury is. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, who studied non-fatal motorcycle injuries, riders who do not wear helmets and are in accidents take longer to recover, have higher costs, are hospitalized for longer, and experience a lower quality of life than those who do wear helmets.
Not wearing a helmet can impact a personal injury claim
The bottom line is that if you are not wearing a helmet at the time of an accident, then your chances of an injury are greater. Likewise, the cost of that injury will be higher with a more significant likelihood of surgery costs, more lost wages, and other costs.
All that said, whether or not you are wearing a helmet does not impact who was at fault. If you are found to have been 0% at fault and the other driver was 100% at fault, then that stays the same no matter if you were wearing a helmet or not.
The lack of a helmet can come into play regarding the cost of your claim. It is possible that the insurance company could say you do not deserve the entire amount of the claim because the costs would have been lower if you had been wearing a helmet. Your attorney can fight to ensure you get what you deserve. Contact Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 877-982-0707 now for a free legal consultation.