Wondering what the Indiana motorcycle helmet laws are and how they will affect your case? Motorcycle accidents are substantially more dangerous than car accidents because motorcycle drivers are so much more vulnerable on the back of a bike than they are in a car. Motorcyclists must be aware of their surroundings at all times and must be extra cautious in close traffic or other situations that put them at risk of an accident.
However, what happens when a motorcyclist sustains an injury in an Indianapolis motorcycle accident but was not wearing a helmet to protect themself? Will this lack of protection keep them from receiving a payout once they file an accident claim? In this blog, we discuss what usually happens when a motorcyclist sustains an injury in an accident and was not wearing a helmet.
What Are the Indiana Helmet Laws?
Indiana is one of 30 U.S. States that require protection for some motorcycle drivers. Indiana motorcycle helmet laws state that only riders under the age of 18 must wear a helmet for protection, in addition to eye protection. There is no law requiring adults over 18 to wear any form of protection when driving a motorcycle. However, this does not mean that riding helmetless will have no repercussions when filing an accident claim.
How Will Riding Helmetless Affect Your Accident Claim?
Deciding not to wear a helmet could affect how the court views your case in an accident claim. This is especially true if your injuries involve your head or neck, an area of the body that could potentially have been protected if a helmet was worn. Indiana follows what’s called the comparative negligence rule (also called the 51% rule), which means you will not receive any compensation if you are found to be 51% or more at fault for the accident.
You may even be ordered to pay for the defendant’s injuries if you are found to be more than 51% at fault. If you are found to be less than 51% at fault for the accident, your case will be allowed to continue and you may receive compensation for your injuries.
Fault percentages will still play a factor in how much compensation you receive even if you are less than 51% at fault, however. As an example, let’s say the court rules you deserve $100,000 in compensation for your injuries. If you are found to be 30% at fault for the accident, you will only receive $70,000 in compensation. Negligence can come in many forms, so it’s important to be aware of what the court may see as negligence.
Indiana Motorcycle Helmet Laws: How Is Negligence Determined?
Unfortunately, some motorcyclists never pursue an accident claim because they are generally viewed as reckless. Obviously, this is not true and negligence can come in many different forms including:
- Ignoring posted traffic signs
- Reckless driving
- Changing lanes without looking
- Running through an intersection
- Violating posted traffic laws
Ultimately, it will be up to the court to determine whether or not the driver was negligent, and negligence can come in many more forms than the examples above. Generally, failing to maintain a duty of care to other drivers on the road will result in a negligent judgment.
Contact an Indiana Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Today
If you are suffering from a motorcycle injury, chances are that you are feeling overwhelmed and think this situation is too big to handle on your own. It’s not time to worry; it’s time to take care of yourself. Crossen Law Firm is here for you. Our Indianapolis motorcycle accident lawyers are equipped with the knowledge and resources to help you with your claim and advocate for your best interests.