Kibbey Wagner, PLLC | November 4, 2022 | Florida Law
The numbers are in, and they show that helmets save motorcyclists’ lives. However, not all motorcyclists wear helmets, and not all are required by law to do so. With that being said, failing to wear a helmet can have serious negative consequences.
Florida Helmet Laws
Florida helmet laws are not restrictive by comparison to many other localities. Various states across the U.S. require motorcycle riders to wear a helmet whenever riding a motorcycle, regardless of age, experience, or license type.
However, in Florida, only certain individuals are required to wear helmets. If you are under 21 years of age, you are required to wear a helmet as a motorcycle rider or passenger. If you are 21 years of age or older, you may refrain from wearing a helmet if you meet the insurance requirement of having at least $10,000 in medical coverage.
Type of Helmet Required
If you are required to wear a helmet, make sure you wear one that conforms to Florida’s requirements, which mandate that riders’ helmets comply with Federal Motorcycle Vehicle Safety Standard 218 promoted by the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Consequences of Not Wearing a Helmet
It is your right to ride without a helmet if you have the proper insurance and are 21 or older. However, the consequences make doing so a risky proposition.
As you would imagine, a head injury at highway speeds can be deadly for a motorcyclist. Traumatic brain injuries are common for helmetless riders.
Even riders with helmets are at risk of suffering an impact to their helmet that injures their brain. However, the level of damage mitigation that helmets provide is high and saves many lives each year.
Without a helmet, a blow to the head with mild injury could result in a serious TBI. Whereas the same blow to a rider with a helmet might cause no damage whatsoever.
If you are pulled over for riding a motorcycle without a helmet and are under 21 or don’t have insurance, you can expect to get a citation requiring the payment of a fine. Although not substantial, the fine can serve as a reminder of the importance of wearing a helmet.
Motorcycle Accident Injury Claim Repercussions
If you’re in a motorcycle accident, you have the right to pursue compensation from negligent drivers when they cause you injury. Doing so requires you to prove that the other party was negligent and that your injury was the direct result of said negligence. You can file this claim regardless of the severity of the accident because motorcycles are not subject to Florida’s no-fault insurance rules like cars are.
If you weren’t wearing a helmet, you wonder whether you may still file a claim for compensation. The answer is yes.
Even if you weren’t wearing a helmet when your crash occurred, you may still demand compensation from someone who negligently injured you on the road. You may, however, receive less compensation than if you were wearing a helmet.
If you are a motorcycle rider, you can easily ride without a helmet and remain in compliance. You won’t receive a citation if you are over 21 and have medical coverage of at least $10,000. However, carefully considering the consequences of not wearing a helmet may help you make a more informed decision when riding.
A Lawyer Can Help You With an Accident Claim
If you are injured while riding with or without a motorcycle helmet, you may have a compensation claim that will help you get through your injuries and the impact they cause in your life. A motorcycle accident lawyer can help recover the payout you deserve.