What are the Laws Regarding Motorcycle Helmets?

When operating a motorcycle, helmets are important for your safety, but depending on where you live it may also be required by the law. The laws regarding motorcycles and helmets vary by state, so to prevent potential legal issues, it’s important to learn the laws where you live. Currently, Iowa and Illinois are the only states that do not have any laws requiring that helmets must be worn. All other states have at least some type of law in place regarding helmets.

Motorcycle Helmet Safety

There has been some criticism against mandatory helmet laws claiming that helmets hinder vision and hearing while operating a motorcycle. However, Department of Transportation studies have established that when helmets are worn properly, vision and hearing are not hindered. In fact, according to government studies, wearing a helmet can be approximately 35 percent more effective in preventing brain injuries and fatalities.

Helmet Laws

There are 20 states with laws that require all motorcyclists and their passengers wear helmets while riding. In addition, the laws require that the helmets worn must be approved by the Department of Transportation and meet their Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards.

In other states, the law requires that people under the age of either 18 or 21 must wear helmets while operating a motorcycle. In some states, a motorcycle driver who only has a learner’s permit is required by law to wear a helmet. Before operating a motorcycle, it’s important to learn the laws in your state.

What Happens When Motorcycle Helmet Laws are Violated?

If you are required by law to wear a helmet in the state in which you are operating a motorcycle, then not doing so can result in a traffic ticket and fine. The fine amount will typically vary by state. It can also hurt your chances of getting maximum compensation if you file a personal injury claim against someone who may have caused an accident that injured you.

If you are violating the state’s helmet laws and get into an accident, then you risk incurring a serious injury or even death. The resulting medical costs and other damages such as lost wages while you are too injured to work, could be catastrophic.  

If the accident is your fault and you are violating the helmet laws, then you may be held liable for all damages involved in the accident. In addition, you may be ticketed for not wearing a helmet. If the accident was caused by another driver and you file a personal injury claim for compensation, your claim may be weakened if you had violated the helmet laws. In such case, you can be held liable for your injuries since you were not wearing a helmet as required by law.

If you were involved in a motorcycle accident, contact a motorcycle accident lawyer such as the motorbike accident lawyer Las Vegas NV locals trust.


Thanks to authors at Nadia von Magdenko & Associates for their insight into Personal Injury law.

Posted on March 28, 2018 @ 3:33 pm

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