Motorcyclists are some of the most vulnerable motorists on Texas roadways. They are particularly at risk of suffering severe or fatal injuries in a crash because motorcycles are so much smaller and lighter than other vehicles on the road. Motorcycles also don’t have the same safety features as most cars and trucks. This is why Texas and many other states have special safety regulations for motorcycles to help limit injuries as much as possible when these riders are involved in motor vehicle accidents.
Is There a Motorcycle Helmet Law in Texas?
Under Texas law, anyone who is under 21 years old must wear a helmet when they are on a motorcycle. Additionally, people who are 21 or older are only allowed to ride without a helmet in Texas if they meet two requirements:
- They complete an approved motorcycle safety education course.
- They are covered by an applicable insurance plan.
Additionally, the Texas Department of Transportation recommends that motorcyclists wear protective gear, such as pants and a jacket with reflective stripes. It also recommends that motorcycle riders use headlights even in the daytime and avoid speeding or riding while intoxicated.
How Helmet Laws Affect Motorcycle Crash Claims
While many Texans are not required to wear a helmet while they are on a motorcycle, failure to wear a helmet might still impact your ability to recover compensation after a crash. Texas is a comparative negligence state, which means that the courts might significantly reduce your compensation if you were even the least bit responsible for your injuries.
Under the conditions of comparative negligence, courts determine how much someone is owed based on their portion of the blame for an accident. For example, if the courts decide that the injuries you suffered in an accident were worth $100,000, but you were 40% responsible for the crash, then you are only entitled to $60,000 for your damages (40% less than the full amount).
Even if another party was clearly responsible for your accident, the negligent party or their insurance company might try to deflect some of the blame for your injuries if you were not wearing a helmet. If they can prove that your failure to wear a helmet contributed to your injuries or worsened your injuries in any way, then they might be able to claim that you are partly liable.
Hurt in a Motorcycle Accident? Talk to a Lawyer Now
If you have been hurt in a motorcycle accident or you’ve lost a loved one in a motorcycle crash, the knowledgeable and compassionate attorneys at Burch Law Firm are here to help you stand up for your rights. With decades of experience, our skilled motorcycle accident lawyers have what it takes to help you demand the justice and compensation you deserve.
To get started on the road to recovery right away, set up your free consultation by contacting Burch Law Firm.
Troy Burch has practiced law in New Braunfels since 1990 representing residents of New Braunfels and the surrounding communities. Troy Burch graduated with high honors from Texas Christian University and from Baylor Law School.