DALLAS, Texas. According to the Centers for Disease Control, motorcycle helmets saved an estimated 1,859 lives in 2016 alone. Motorcycle helmets not only reduce your risk of injury, they also reduce your risk of death while riding. According to the CDC, motorcycle helmets reduce the likelihood of head injury by as much as 69%. They reduce the risk of death by 37%. As a general rule, the safest bet is to wear your motorcycle helmet while riding.
But what happens if you’ve been in an accident and weren’t wearing your helmet? Does failure to wear a motorcycle helmet bar you from recovering damages for your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering? In Texas, it is not against the law for individuals over 21 years of age to choose to not wear a helmet. According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, if you have insurance that protects you up to $10,000 in damages for motorcycle accidents, you can ride a motorcycle without a helmet without facing any citations.
However, if you are involved in an accident and suffer injuries while not wearing a helmet, your personal insurance policy may first have to cover the damages if you suffer a head or neck injury. However, sometimes riders suffer broken bones, back injuries, and other injuries unrelated to their helmet use. If you suffered an injury that is not related to your failure to wear a helmet, you may still be entitled to seek compensation for your damages. However, if you suffered a serious head injury or a neck injury and were not wearing a helmet, negligent parties may be able to claim that your failure to wear a helmet resulted in your injuries. It can sometimes be difficult to prove what “could have been” had you been wearing a helmet or distinguish between how severe the injury would have been had you been wearing a helmet.
Damages are based on the degree of fault each party holds in the accident. If you were not wearing a helmet, the driver or other party involved in your accident may claim that your injuries are the result of your failure to wear a helmet.
So, what’s the takeaway? Always wear a helmet. Not only can it save your life, it can also protect your legal rights should you get into an accident. Motorcycle accidents can be devastating for victims. Victims can suffer from a range of serious injuries, including traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, broken bones, road rash, and other serious injuries. The Lenahan Law Firm are motorcycle accident attorneys in Dallas, Texas who work with victims and families to help them get the recoveries they may deserve under the law. Our firm can review the specific details of your case, help you gather evidence, and fight insurance companies and negligent parties to help you get the recovery you may deserve under the law. Contact the Lenahan Law Firm, motorcycle accident lawyers in Dallas, Texas today to learn more about your options and rights.