The 2023 Comprehensive Guide: Everything You Need to Know About Motorcycle Helmets

The 2023 Comprehensive Guide: Everything You Need to Know About Motorcycle Helmets

The 2023 Comprehensive Guide: Everything You Need to Know About Motorcycle Helmets

Riding a motorcycle is an exhilarating experience, but safety should always be a top priority. One of the most crucial safety gear for riders is the motorcycle helmet. Let’s dive deep into the world of motorcycle helmets and answer some of the most frequently asked questions.

Required or Not: Motorcycle Helmet Laws by State (as of 2023)

A graphic of the united states with text reading "Helmet Laws By State"

Each state has its own set of laws regarding helmet usage. While some states mandate helmets for all riders, others require them only for specific age groups or under certain conditions. Always check your state’s regulations before hitting the road.

Here is a breakdown of current Motorcycle helmet laws by state, according to The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS):

StateHelmet Law
AlabamaAll riders are required to wear helmets.
AlaskaRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
ArizonaRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
ArkansasRiders 20 and younger are required to wear helmets.
CaliforniaAll riders are required to wear helmets.
ColoradoRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
ConnecticutRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
Delaware18 and younger and passengers 18 and younger; novice riders and their passengers for the first two years after endorsement.
FloridaRiders 20 and younger are required to wear helmets.
GeorgiaAll riders are required to wear helmets.
HawaiiRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
IdahoRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
IllinoisNo helmet law.
IndianaRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
IowaNo helmet law.
KansasRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
KentuckyRiders 20 and younger are required to wear helmets.
LouisianaAll riders are required to wear helmets.
MaineRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
MarylandAll riders are required to wear helmets.
MassachusettsAll riders are required to wear helmets.
MichiganRiders 20 and younger are required to wear helmets.
MinnesotaRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
MississippiAll riders are required to wear helmets.
MissouriRiders 25 and younger are required to wear helmets.
MontanaRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
Nebraska20 and younger are required to wear helmets. In Nebraska,  riders 21 and older will not be required to wear a helmet as long as they have completed a basic certification course provided by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation (effective 01/01/2024).
NevadaAll riders are required to wear helmets.
New HampshireNo helmet law.
New JerseyAll riders are required to wear helmets.
New MexicoRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
New YorkAll riders are required to wear helmets.
North CarolinaAll riders are required to wear helmets.
North DakotaRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
OhioRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
OklahomaRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
OregonAll riders are required to wear helmets.
PennsylvaniaRiders 20 and younger are required to wear helmets.
Rhode IslandRiders 20 and younger are required to wear helmets.
South CarolinaRiders 20 and younger are required to wear helmets.
South DakotaRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
TennesseeAll riders are required to wear helmets.
TexasRiders 20 and younger are required to wear helmets.
UtahRiders 20 and younger are required to wear helmets.
VermontAll riders are required to wear helmets.
VirginiaAll riders are required to wear helmets.
WashingtonAll riders are required to wear helmets.
West VirginiaAll riders are required to wear helmets.
WisconsinRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets.
WyomingRiders 17 and younger are required to wear helmets. Helmets are mandatory for mopeds defined by the state as having an engine displacement of 50 cc or less, brake horsepower of 2 or less, and maximum speeds of 30 mph.

You may notice that Iowa is one of very few states with no helmet law. This is thanks in large part to organizations like ABATE who fight for the rights and interests of bikers everywhere. The Biker Lawyers are proud members of ABATE and highly recommend you check out this awesome brotherhood!

It’s important to note that while these laws provide a general guideline, there might be specific conditions or exceptions in each state, and laws may change over time.

Always refer to the state’s official regulations or consult with a local attorney for the most accurate and up-to-date information.


Motorcycle Helmet Safety

Image of a man on a motorcycle at an intersection.

Safety should always be the top priority when choosing a helmet. Here’s a more in-depth look at some of the safety aspects:

Certifications 

Helmets undergo testing to meet specific safety standards. The most common certifications are DOT (Department of Transportation), ECE (Economic Commission for Europe), and Snell. Each certification has its testing criteria, but all ensure a helmet provides adequate protection.

Material and Construction

Helmets are typically made from polycarbonate, fiberglass composite, or carbon fiber. Each material offers different levels of protection, weight, and comfort. Multi-layered EPS (expanded polystyrene) liners inside the helmet absorb impact during a crash.

Full-Face vs. Open-Face

image of an open-faced and closed faced helmet with a graphic including letters "vs"

Full-face helmets offer the most protection as they cover the entire head, including the face and jawline. Open-face or half helmets might be more comfortable for some, but they provide less protection.

Retention System

The chin strap keeps the helmet securely on the head. It should be easy to fasten and unfasten, and when secured, the helmet should not move around on the head.

Visor and Face Shield

A good visor or face shield protects the rider from wind, debris, and UV rays. Anti-fog and anti-scratch coatings can enhance visibility in various conditions.

Regular Inspection

Helmets should be inspected regularly for signs of wear, damage, or degradation. The interior padding can compress over time, and the outer shell might get scratched or chipped. Any visible damage is a sign that it’s time for a replacement.

Post-Accident Replacement

Even if there’s no visible damage after an accident, the helmet’s structural integrity might be compromised. It’s always safer to replace a helmet after a significant impact.

Safety is paramount, and while style and comfort are essential, they should never compromise protection. Always prioritize safety features when choosing a helmet and ride with confidence, knowing you’re well-protected.


Motorcycle Helmet Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Close up image of a motorcycle helmet on the ground

What are the Disadvantages of Wearing a Motorcycle Helmet?

To be fair, wearing a helmet has undeniable safety advantages but it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. While the advantages of wearing a motorcycle helmet far outweigh the disadvantages, it’s important to consider all factors when deciding if wearing a helmet is right for you. Here are some commonly cited disadvantages of wearing a motorcycle helmet:

  1. Restricted Peripheral Vision: Some riders feel that helmets, especially full-face varieties, can restrict their peripheral vision. This limitation can potentially make it harder to see vehicles or obstacles on the side.
  2. Reduced Hearing: Helmets can muffle sounds, making it harder for riders to hear certain noises from the surroundings, such as horns, sirens, or other vehicles.
  3. Weight: Helmets, especially those made of robust materials, can be heavy. Wearing them for extended periods might cause neck or shoulder strain for some riders.
  4. Heat and Discomfort: In hot climates, wearing a helmet can become uncomfortable due to the accumulation of heat. Even with ventilation systems, a helmet can cause sweating and discomfort during long rides in the sun.
  5. Cost: Quality helmets with advanced safety features can be expensive. For riders on a budget, this can be a significant consideration.
  6. False Sense of Security: Some riders might feel invincible with a helmet on and might indulge in riskier behavior, thinking they’re fully protected. This mindset can be dangerous as helmets are just one aspect of overall road safety.
  7. Communication Difficulties: Conversing with fellow riders at stops or signals can be challenging with a full-face helmet, requiring riders to lift the visor or the entire helmet.
  8. Potential for Fogging: In colder or humid conditions, the visor of a helmet can fog up, reducing visibility. While many modern helmets come with anti-fogging features, it’s still a concern for some riders.

All this said it would be irresponsible of us to not remind you that despite these disadvantages, the safety benefits far outweigh the disadvantages when it comes to wearing a helmet. 

But hey man, in the end, it’s your choice. That’s what freedom is all about!

What are the Benefits of a Half Helmet for Motorcycle Riders?

open-faced motorcycle helmet with goggles sits on the back of a motorcycle

Half helmets, often referred to as “brain buckets,” cover the top of the head. They offer better visibility and more airflow, making them popular in hotter climates. However, they provide less protection compared to full-face helmets.

What are the Best Motorcycle Helmets for Beginners?

close up image of a motorcycle helmet with an open visor

For beginners, venturing into the world of motorcycling can be both thrilling and daunting. One of the first and most crucial decisions a new rider will make is selecting the right helmet. A helmet is not just about protection; it’s about comfort, visibility, and enhancing the overall riding experience.

Here’s a deeper dive into choosing the best helmets for those just starting out:

  • Fit and Comfort: A helmet should fit snugly without causing discomfort. A loose helmet can shift during a ride, obstructing vision and reducing protection. Many brands offer different shell sizes and interior padding options to ensure a perfect fit.
  • Visibility: For beginners, a clear field of vision is essential. Helmets with wide eye ports offer better peripheral vision, helping new riders be more aware of their surroundings.
  • Ventilation: Proper airflow is crucial, especially during longer rides or in warmer climates. Look for helmets with adjustable vents, allowing riders to regulate airflow based on weather conditions.
  • Safety Standards: Ensure the helmet meets or exceeds safety standards like DOT, ECE, or Snell. These certifications indicate that the helmet has undergone rigorous testing.
  • Ease of Use: Features like quick-release straps and integrated sun visors can make the riding experience more enjoyable for beginners.
  • Price: While it’s tempting to go for the most expensive helmet, beginners should look for a balance between cost, comfort, and safety. Brands like HJC, Bell, and Shoei offer helmets that are both affordable and reliable.
  • Reviews and Recommendations: Before making a purchase, beginners should read reviews, ask fellow riders for recommendations, and visit local shops to try on different models.

Remember, the best helmet for one rider might not be the best for another. It’s essential to find a helmet that suits individual needs and preferences.

Is a Motorcycle Helmet Still Safe to Use After an Accident?

close up image of a white helmet at a motorcycle crash scene

No. Even if there’s no visible damage, the helmet’s integrity might be compromised. 

Helmets are designed to absorb impact by dispersing and cushioning the force throughout the helmet’s structure. 

Once a helmet has been subjected to a significant force, such as in a crash, its ability to provide the same level of protection is diminished. The materials inside, especially the EPS liner, are meant for one-time use; they compress upon impact to reduce the force before it reaches the head. 

If the helmet hit anything during the accident, it’s probably best to replace it. Even a mild crash can cause unseen micro-damage, reducing the helmet’s protective capabilities in future impacts. It’s always better to be safe than sorry; your life and well-being are worth more than the cost of a new helmet.

Are Full-Face Motorcycle Helmets Safer?

Absolutely. Full-face helmets stand out as the top choice for riders prioritizing safety. They envelop the entire head, including the face, chin, and neck areas, which are notably susceptible during accidents. 

The continuous shell around the head and face that full-face helmets provide also shields riders from environmental nuisances like wind, rain, debris, and pesky insects. 

While the allure of open-face or half helmets might appeal to some for their style or breezy feel, when it boils down to sheer protective capability, full-face helmets reign supreme.

Is it More Safe to Wear a Motorcycle Helmet or Not Wear One?

Smaller image of Ginger Jansen on a Harley Davidson

The answer is clear-cut: strapping on a helmet is always the safer route.

Helmets are meticulously crafted to absorb and distribute the brunt of an impact, drastically slashing the risk of severe head traumas or fatalities. 

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), helmets are about 37% effective in warding off fatal injuries to motorcycle enthusiasts. 

Riding without that protective layer leaves one exposed to direct, unforgiving impacts, potentially leading to traumatic brain injuries or worse. 

Beyond the life-saving crash protection, helmets also serve as a barrier against the elements, elevating the overall riding experience. The decision to wear a helmet can spell the difference between a minor scrape and a catastrophic injury.

What Speed Are Motorcycle Helmets Rated For?

Image of a man riding a motorcycle on an empty highway

It might surprise some to learn that most motorcycle helmets undergo impact tests simulating speeds around 13-14 mph. 

While this might seem modest given the velocities motorcycles can reach, it’s pivotal to grasp that these tests mirror the average speed a rider’s head would strike the ground in real-world mishaps, not the motorcycle’s cruising speed. 

In a plethora of accidents, even if the bike is zooming at highway speeds, factors like sliding, tumbling, or the bike’s deceleration can temper the actual head impact speed. With that in mind, it’s always wise to champion safety and steer clear of reckless speeds.

Helmets offer a formidable line of defense, but they aren’t magic barriers. Adopting a responsible riding approach maximizes the protective prowess of any helmet.

Are Expensive Motorcycle Helmets Worth It?

a shelf with four motorcycle helmets for sale

When it comes to helmets, the age-old adage “you get what you pay for” often rings true. 

Pricier helmets tend to offer enhanced comfort, superior ventilation, and cutting-edge features. They might also boast advanced materials and construction techniques that can provide better protection. 

However, it’s crucial to remember that safety standards, such as DOT or ECE, remain consistent across various price points. So, while a high-end helmet might offer additional comforts and features, many mid-range helmets still provide excellent protection.

Should I Buy a Pre-owned Motorcycle Helmet?

two shelves showcasing an extensive motorcycle helmet collection.

Regarding pre-owned helmets: while snagging a deal might be tempting, helmets are one piece of gear you should always buy new. The reason is simple. Even if a used helmet looks pristine, you can’t be certain of its history. It might have been involved in an accident or dropped, which could compromise its structural integrity. Plus, the interior padding of helmets, designed to provide a snug fit, conforms to the shape of the original wearer’s head over time.

A used helmet might not offer the same level of comfort or protection as a new one tailored to your head shape.

Are Most Motorcycle Helmets One Size Fits All?

image of a man and woman strapping on motorcycle helmets

Definitely not. Just as every individual is unique, so is the shape and size of their head. Helmets come in a variety of sizes, from XS to XXL, and many brands even offer different shell sizes and interior padding options to ensure an optimal fit. 

A proper fit is paramount for safety; a helmet that’s too loose or too tight can be a distraction and might not provide the best protection in an accident.

If you’re purchasing your first helmet, visiting a brick-and-mortar store can be invaluable.

three shelves with rows of motorcycle helmets for sale

 Local motorcycle shops or specialty helmet retailers often have knowledgeable salespeople who can guide you through the fitting process. They’ll measure your head, recommend sizes, and let you try on different models. This hands-on approach ensures you get a helmet that fits perfectly, which might be challenging when ordering online without prior experience.

How Does the Sun Visor Work in a Motorcycle Helmet?

Image of a man riding a motorcycle

Integrated sun visors in motorcycle helmets are a game-changer for many riders. These visors can be flipped down to shield the eyes from bright sunlight, eliminating the need for sunglasses and making transitions from light to dark areas smoother.

But beyond mere shading, many of these visors offer UV protection. On average, quality sun visors in helmets can block out up to 99% of harmful UV rays, safeguarding your eyes from potential damage and reducing eye strain during sun-drenched rides.

When shopping for a helmet with a sun visor, it’s a good idea to check the UV protection rating to ensure you’re getting the best protection possible.

How Does it Feel to Wear a Motorcycle Helmet?

Image of a person on a motorcycle at an intersection looking at the camera as if it were another motorist

Slipping on a motorcycle helmet for the first time can be a unique experience. A well-fitted helmet should feel snug around your head, with even pressure distributed throughout, but without any uncomfortable tight spots. The top of the helmet’s eye port should sit just above your eyebrows. 

As you wear it, you’ll notice a reduction in ambient noise and a sense of enclosure. This feeling of being “cocooned” can be reassuring for many, knowing that they’re shielded from potential hazards.

Does it Feel Good to Wear a Full-Sized Motorcycle Helmet?

Full-sized or full-face helmets, while offering the utmost protection, do come with a distinct feel. 

The comprehensive coverage can initially feel a tad claustrophobic to some, especially those transitioning from open-face or half helmets. However, many riders grow to appreciate the serene environment it offers, shielding them from wind blast, noise, and debris.

Over time, as riders get accustomed to the sensation, the benefits of enhanced safety and comfort usually outweigh any initial reservations.

Is it Hot to Wear a Full-Face Motorbike Helmet?

close-up image of a motorcycle rider wearing a helmet

Full-face helmets, due to their comprehensive coverage, can feel warmer than their open-face counterparts. However, advancements in helmet design have led to improved ventilation systems.

Modern full-face helmets come equipped with multiple vents that channel fresh air in and expel hot air out, creating a cooling effect. While they might feel a bit warm when stationary, especially in hot weather, the airflow while riding usually keeps the rider reasonably comfortable.

Do Motorcycle Helmets Get Sweaty?

Yes, especially during warmer days or intense rides, helmets can get sweaty inside. However, modern helmets are designed with this in mind. They often feature moisture-wicking liners that pull sweat away from the skin, keeping you relatively dry.

Additionally, advanced ventilation systems allow for airflow, helping to evaporate sweat and keep the rider cool. For those who ride in particularly hot climates, it might be worth investing in helmets with superior ventilation or removable and washable liners.

Do Motorcycle Helmets Block Sound?

Image of several bikers riding motorcycles- each controlling the space around them

Helmets are designed to reduce certain types of noise, primarily wind noise. A good helmet can significantly cut down on the roar of the wind rushing past, offering a quieter ride.

However, they won’t block out essential sounds like sirens, horns, or the engine’s roar. Some riders, especially those on longer rides or high-speed journeys, opt to wear earplugs to further reduce noise levels, ensuring they can still hear crucial sounds while protecting their hearing.

Do Motorcycle Helmets Loosen Up?

nearly grayscale image of a man riding a motorcycle down a highway

Over time and with regular use, the interior padding of a helmet can compress slightly, leading to a looser fit. This is a natural process as the materials conform to the shape of the rider’s head.

However, a helmet should never become too loose. If it starts to shift or rotate easily while on your head, it’s a sign that you might need a replacement or at least new interior padding. Regularly checking the fit and ensuring it remains snug is crucial for safety.

Is it Hard to Breathe in a Motorcycle Helmet?

For the uninitiated, the notion of a full-face helmet might conjure up concerns about breathability. However, modern helmet designs prioritize the rider’s comfort and safety.

  • Ventilation Systems: Most helmets come equipped with a series of vents, especially around the mouth and nose area. These allow for a steady flow of air, ensuring that the rider can breathe comfortably.
  • Anti-Fogging Features: To combat the issue of visors fogging up due to breath, many helmets have anti-fog treatments or pin-lock systems. This ensures clear vision without compromising breathability.
  • Adjustable Features: Some helmets have adjustable chin curtains or breath guards, allowing riders to customize the airflow based on their comfort.

While it might take a ride or two to get accustomed, most riders find that breathing in a full-face helmet is no more challenging than in any other type.

What is the Most Comfortable Motorcycle Helmet?

close up image of an open visor helmet

Comfort is subjective and can vary from rider to rider. For this reason, it’s a good idea to know exactly what to look in terms of comfort for when choosing the right helmet.

Four Common Factors to Consider for Helmet Comfort

1. Fit 

A helmet that fits well, neither too tight nor too loose, is paramount. It should hug the head without causing pressure points.

2. Lining and Padding 

Helmets with plush, moisture-wicking liners tend to be more comfortable, especially on longer rides. Some helmets even offer customizable padding systems for a tailored fit.

3. Weight

Lighter helmets reduce strain on the neck and shoulders, enhancing comfort during extended rides.

4. Ventilation

A well-ventilated helmet can make a world of difference, especially in warmer climates.

Brands like Shoei, Arai, and Schuberth often receive high marks for comfort, but it’s always a good idea to try on several models to determine the best fit for your unique head shape and preferences.

What Do You Do with Old Motorcycle Helmets?

Image of an old motorcycle helmet that should not be worn

Once a helmet has reached the end of its life, whether due to age, wear, or an accident, it’s essential to retire it responsibly. Here are four solid suggestions:

  1. Recycle: Some areas offer recycling programs for helmets. The outer shell, EPS liner, and other components can sometimes be processed separately.
  2. Donate: Some organizations accept old helmets for display, educational, or artistic purposes. They might use them in crash demonstrations or for art projects.
  3. Repurpose: Get creative! Turn your old helmet into a planter, lamp, or any other DIY project.
  4. Dispose: If you can’t find a recycling or donation option, ensure you dispose of your helmet properly. It’s a good idea to cut the straps off to ensure it doesn’t get reused unsafely.

Remember, an old helmet should never be sold or given away for riding purposes. Its protective capabilities are likely compromised, and it could be dangerous for a new rider.

Should You Customize a Motorcycle Helmet with Bluetooth Audio and Accessories?

motorcycle helmet with a set of bull horns attached to the sides

It’s essential to avoid any alterations that might compromise the helmet’s structural integrity, such as drilling holes. Instead, opt for accessories specifically designed for motorcycle helmets. In the world of biking, safety and functionality should always ride hand in hand.

Customizing a motorcycle helmet with Bluetooth audio and other accessories has become increasingly popular among riders, and it’s easy to see why. Bluetooth systems have revolutionized on-road communication, allowing riders to seamlessly connect with fellow bikers. 

This is especially beneficial during group rides, where coordination and communication can enhance the overall experience. Beyond just chatting, these systems provide the added advantage of real-time navigation instructions, eliminating the need to frequently stop and check maps.

Beyond Practical Application: More Benefits of Helmet Customization

Of course, we can’t forget to mention the entertainment value.

Long rides can sometimes become monotonous, but with Bluetooth audio, you can immerse yourself in your favorite tunes, podcasts, or audiobooks, making the journey as enjoyable as the destination. This fusion of technology and riding brings a modern twist to the age-old thrill of motorcycling.

However, while the allure of customization is strong, safety should always be at the forefront of any modifications. If you choose to customize your helmet, you should be cautious to ensure that your enhancements don’t undermine the helmet’s primary function: protection.

In Conclusion

image of a motorcycle crash scene with a helmet

Motorcycle helmets are a rider’s best friend, offering protection and enhancing the overall riding experience. Remember, safety first! And if you ever find yourself injured in an accident, don’t hesitate. Contact The Biker Lawyers for expert guidance and support.

What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident

What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident

Protecting Your Rights and Your Wallet: The Ultimate Guide After a Motorcycle Accident

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The following is based on a true story. Don’t make it yours.

It was a crisp, clear morning as I zipped up my leather jacket and secured my helmet. I straddled my beloved motorcycle, my pride and joy, and felt a rush of adrenaline course through my veins. Today was perfect for the open road—a day to leave behind the stress of my daily life and seek solace in the wind.

My destination was the annual biker rally, an event I looked forward to every year. As I rode, the familiar hum of my engine lulled me into a meditative state. For a few hours, it was just me, the wind, and the open road.

Image of three motorcycles parked in a beautiful setting with mountains in the background

Photo Credit – Viking Bags

Little did I know that today, my life would change forever.

As I approached an intersection, I saw the light turn green, and I eased on the throttle. Out of nowhere, a truck hurtled through the red light, directly into my path. Time seemed to stand still as I braced for impact, my life flashing before my eyes. The next thing I knew, I was lying on the ground, my motorcycle in ruins, and my body in immense pain.

In the months that followed, my life became a whirlwind of doctor’s appointments, physical therapy, and overwhelming medical bills. My once-strong body was now a shell of its former self, and I struggled to maintain my spirit.

Through sheer willpower, I found the strength to seek help.

We’ll come back to this rider’s story a bit later.

Ginger of The Biker Lawyers on his motorcycle in front of nature.

As you embark on the journey to find compensation and justice for yourself or a loved one after a motorcycle accident, let our comprehensive guide be your road map. We’ll walk you through the steps to protect your rights, deal with insurance companies, gather evidence, and work with a personal injury attorney.

Don’t miss out on the compensation you deserve. Read on and take control of your fight for justice.

The Importance of Knowing Your Rights After an Accident

Motorcycle accidents are traumatic events that can leave victims feeling overwhelmed and confused. It’s essential to understand your rights and how to protect your assets, especially when dealing with insurance companies. 

General rights that motorcyclists have after a crash include:

  • Right to medical treatment: You have the right to receive prompt and appropriate medical care for your injuries.
  • Right to file a claim: You have the right to file an insurance claim with your insurer or the at-fault party’s insurance company.
  • Right to compensation: You are entitled to compensation for damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering.
  • Right to legal representation: You have the right to seek legal counsel to help navigate the complex legal process and advocate for your best interests.
  • Right to refuse a quick settlement: You have the right to refuse a lowball settlement offer and pursue fair compensation through negotiation or litigation.

By understanding and exercising your rights, you can better protect your interests and ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve after a motorcycle accident.

Insurance Companies: Necessary Evil in Personal Injury Cases

Meme of a demon in a suit standing next to a motorcycle with the text "Insurance, A necessary Evil"

Insurance companies work to make a profit for their stockholders. They have no genuine concern for people who get injured in crashes other than to settle as cheaply as possible. 

To maintain profit margins, they often look for ways to minimize the payouts on claims. While they may be a necessary part of the process, it’s crucial to be aware of their tactics and take steps to protect yourself.

This starts long before an accident by making sure you have enough of the right coverage (including UM/UIM insurance) to protect your assets.

5 Things to Do at the Accident Site (If Able)

Three images of crashes with the text "Crash Aftermath"

  1. Stay at the accident site and report injuries: Remaining at the scene of the accident is essential to avoid legal complications. By staying, you can provide accurate information to authorities and ensure that your account of the incident is on record.
  2. Call emergency services, police, and medical professionals to create a medical record from the accident: Promptly calling for help establishes a crucial timeline of events. A medical record created at the scene provides valuable evidence to support your case and helps validate your injuries.
  3. Take photos of the scene, the damage to your motorcycle, and gather insurance information from other parties and witnesses: Photographic evidence is indispensable when building a strong case. It allows you to document the severity of the accident and the extent of the damage. Additionally, collecting contact and insurance information from other parties involved and any eyewitnesses will help your attorney during the investigation and claim process.

Image of a crashed red motorcycle

As the saying goes, “If it’s not documented, it didn’t happen.” Keeping this in mind can help you navigate the complex process of motorcycle injury claims and secure the compensation you deserve.

  1. Contact a motorcycle injury lawyer to help protect your rights and maximize compensation: An experienced personal injury lawyer understands the nuances of motorcycle accident cases and can help you navigate the complexities of the legal system. They will ensure that your rights are protected, and help you pursue the maximum compensation available.
  2. Report the accident as soon as possible: Reporting the accident to your insurance company and relevant authorities promptly is vital. It helps establish a clear timeline and ensures that you comply with any legal requirements.

Don’ts in a Motorcycle Accident

Meme image of a laughing demon wearing a suit with text "Insurance companies be like: sure you've got enough coverage, trust me!"

There are a few things a rider can do to really screw up their case early on. Here are the top things to avoid after an accident.

  1. Never admit fault, even if you think you might be partially responsible: Admitting fault at the accident scene can be used against you in your case. Leave the determination of fault to the professionals, as there may be factors you’re not aware of that contributed to the accident.
  2. Don’t ignore injuries, even if they seem minor: Seek medical attention and follow your doctor’s advice. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent, and ignoring them could lead to complications later on. Documenting all injuries and following through with medical care also strengthens your case.
  3. Avoid giving incomplete information regarding your lost income and employment history: When seeking compensation for lost wages, it’s essential to provide accurate and complete information about your income and employment history. Inaccurate or incomplete information may result in reduced compensation or damage to your credibility. Your attorney can help you gather and present this information in the best possible way.

Documenting Lost Income and Employment Records

Image of a gavel, justice scales and a statue

Accurate documentation of lost income and employment records is essential in personal injury cases. Be sure to have

Tax returns from the past and present: Tax returns serve as an official record of your income history. They can help establish your earnings before the accident and provide a basis for calculating lost wages. Gather both your past and present tax returns to present a comprehensive view of your financial situation.

Pay stubs and other income documentation: Pay stubs and other income documents, such as direct deposit records or commission statements, offer further insight into your regular earnings. These documents can help verify your income, and when combined with tax returns, they paint a more detailed picture of your financial losses resulting from the accident. Collect pay stubs and any other relevant income documentation from the period before the accident up to the present.

Employment records, including hours you’ve worked, work missed, and pay: Detailed employment records help demonstrate the impact of the accident on your work life. Keep track of the hours you’ve worked before and after the accident, any time missed due to medical appointments or recovery, and any changes in your pay rate. These records can be instrumental in determining the total amount of lost income, as well as demonstrating the non-economic impact of the accident on your life, such as missed opportunities for promotions or career advancement. 

Working with Your Employer and Personal Injury Attorney

Image of The Biker Lawyers on courthouse steps with their logo

Collaborate with your employer and attorney to gather the necessary documentation and build a strong case. Remember, a well-documented case can make all the difference in securing the compensation you deserve.

Conclusion 

So, you’re probably wondering what ever happened to the rider in the story from earlier.

Through sheer willpower, He found the strength to seek help. This led him to call The Biker Lawyers, a personal injury law firm. He called us because we understand the complexities of motorcycle accidents and the immense challenges faced by victims. Together, we built a case that would not only cover his medical expenses but also compensate for his pain, suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life.

It was a long, hard road, but with the support of our personal injury team, the rider eventually found justice. His story is a testament to the importance of knowing your rights and seeking help when you need it most.

Accidents can be overwhelming, but by following these steps and working with a personal injury attorney, you can protect your rights and secure the compensation you deserve. Don’t let insurance companies take advantage of you. 

Contact one of our personal injury lawyers today to help you navigate the complex world of motorcycle injury claims.

How do Wrongful Death Lawsuits Work?

How do Wrongful Death Lawsuits Work?

How do Wrongful Death Lawsuits Work?

Posted on August 18, 2022 at 12:16 PM by The Biker Lawyers

 

What is wrongful death?

If a person dies as the result of another person’s negligence, recklessness, or intentional act, then that family member can file a wrongful death lawsuit. Examples may include a car accidenttruck accidentmotorcycle crash, or the defendant’s involvement in criminal activity.

Wrongful death is a type of personal injury claim in which a judge or jury determines that the deceased victim’s estate should be compensated for financial losses caused by their untimely death.

Additionally, the court may order reparations for emotional damages sustained by those left behind. The best way to understand how wrongful death lawsuits work is to learn about each stage of this complex process:

Who can file a wrongful death lawsuit?

If a person’s death is caused by the negligence or misconduct of another, then the surviving family members have a right to sue for wrongful death.

If a person’s death is caused by the negligence or misconduct of another, then the family members have a right to sue for wrongful death. Wrongful death lawsuits can be brought by:

  • spouses;
  • parents;
  • children; or
  • siblings.

What are the key elements in a wrongful death case?

 

The main element of a wrongful death case is that the defendant acted negligently, recklessly or intentionally, thereby causing someone’s death.

In a wrongful death lawsuit, the main element is that the defendant acted negligently, recklessly or intentionally, thereby causing someone’s death. This means that you must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the person died because of the defendant’s actions or inactions.

Wrongful death lawsuits can be filed by parents and spouses on behalf of children who are under 18 years old at the time of death; children over 18 but still considered dependents by their parents; and other family members if they were dependent on the deceased for support.

Who can sue for wrongful death?

Parents, spouses, and children are allowed to sue for wrongful death. In some cases, other family members may be allowed to file a wrongful death lawsuit.

If you are the child of a deceased person, you are allowed to file a wrongful death lawsuit. This is true even if your parent was not your natural parent. For example, if you were adopted and lost an adoptive parent, you may have grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit against the person who caused their death.

In some cases, other family members or close friends may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of the deceased individual’s estate as well. For example, if two people were married but living separately at the time they died in an accident together while sailing on vacation in a rented boat, each spouse could sue for damages related to their relationship with each other (such as loss of companionship).

How hard is it to prove wrongful death?

It can be challenging to prove that the act or omission of another party caused a person’s death. Attorneys must know how to investigate and gather evidence to build strong cases.

In order for a wrongful death lawsuit to be successful, an attorney must prove that the defendant’s act or omission caused the death. The attorney must also prove that this act or omission was the proximate cause of the victim’s death. Finally, they must show that it was the legal cause of their client’s loved one’s demise—meaning that it would have been possible to avoid such an outcome by taking reasonable measures to prevent harm.

There are many ways parties can be held liable for a fatal accident:

  • Negligence: This is when someone failed to exercise due care in performing their duties and thereby caused harm to another person or property;
  • Reckless behavior: This involves doing something you know has a high risk of causing injury;
  • Intentional conduct (or assault): If someone intended to cause harm but did not do so recklessly, they could still face criminal charges; and/or
  • Strict liability (product liability): If a product causes harm even though there was no human error involved in its production, then manufacturers may be held responsible for any resulting injuries or deaths

What happens if you win a wrongful death case?

If a claim is successful, the defendant will be responsible for paying damages awarded by a judge or jury.

It is important that families work with an attorney who is familiar with calculating damages in wrongful death cases.
Image breaking down what is considered Damages in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

If a wrongful death claim is successful, the defendant will be responsible for paying damages awarded by a judge or jury. Damages are intended to cover the family’s loss of financial support and future earning potential, as well as pain and suffering. The following are some common types of damages that may be awarded:

  • Loss of companionship
  • Funeral expenses
  • Medical bills related to the death
  • Loss of support
  • Loss of accumulations to the estate

 

Is there a statute of limitations on wrongful death?

States typically impose statutes of limitations on wrongful death claims. These limit the amount of time during which loved ones can file claims. Families who fail to file lawsuits within the allotted time are barred from filing them later.

In most cases, the statute of limitations for wrongful death claims is two years from the date of the loss. However, this time limit varies from state to state, and it can also depend on the type of claim and other factors. For example:

  • In Iowa, a person has three years after the injury or death that caused their loved one’s wrongful death to file a lawsuit.
  • While some states allow parents to sue medical malpractice insurance companies after their child dies from medical error (and not just malpractice), others do not give them this option unless their child has already been awarded damages by a court due to malpractice.
  • The age of your loved one at the time of his or her death may affect how long you have until you run out of options in filing a wrongful death lawsuit as well.
    • For example, if your daughter dies at age 20 but didn’t marry yet before she passed away—or even if she did get married but never had children yet—that could change how long these deadlines apply because certain legal actions like marriage are governed by different rules than other types of personal relationships such as being related by blood or adoption laws between siblings

Why do we need a wrongful death attorney?

To improve your chances of winning compensation for your family member’s wrongful death, you should hire an experienced wrongful death attorney to act as your family’s personal representative.

Hiring a wrongful death lawyer is the first thing you should do if you want to bring your case to court. It’s important to work with someone who has experience handling these kinds of cases, because they know all the ins and outs of what happens in courtrooms and can help prepare your case properly. If you don’t hire an attorney, there’s no guarantee that your loved one will get justice or compensation for their loss.

If you’re seeking compensation for lost wages or medical bills from the person who caused your loved one’s death, then you’ll have to prove that he or she was legally responsible for causing it. This means proving that:

  • the decedent died due to this person’s negligence;
  • this person owed them a duty (like a doctor owes his patient);
  • he breached that duty by acting improperly;
  • and this caused them harm (such as by leaving them at risk of infection).

Conclusion

Wrongful death can be a very emotional issue. It is important that you work with an attorney who not only has experience handling these cases but also understands how to communicate effectively with a grieving family.

Lost a loved one? Ride with us.

The Biker Lawyers’ wrongful death attorneys want to hear your story. We’re ready to answer any questions you may have.

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When do I need a personal injury lawyer after a crash?

When do I need a personal injury lawyer after a crash?

When do I need a personal injury lawyer after a crash?

Posted on June 16, 2022 at 8:00 AM by The Biker Lawyers

It seems more car accidents happen this time of year than any other. There are few events in life as jarring and filled with potential consequences as getting into a crash. If you’re lucky, all you have to deal with is some injuries and a damaged car or motorcycle. However, if the crash leaves you or someone else seriously injured, life can become very complicated.

This guide is by no means comprehensive. For ease of navigation, if you have a specific question, click below to jump ahead. Otherwise, read on.

What to do First When to speak to a lawyer
Accidents involving a Car and Motorcycle  Questions about Insurance
Questions about Wrongful Death Should I Hire a Lawyer?

This complexity doesn’t just stem from the physical pain of your injuries, but also from the potential legal ramifications of the accident.

For instance, if your vehicle was damaged or totaled by another driver who was behaving negligently (i.e., speeding, distracted driving), then that negligent driver could be held legally accountable for any damages they caused—and this is where it gets even more complicated.

In many cases like this one, an injury attorney will be required to help you recover compensation for damages caused by someone else’s negligence. Read on to learn what happens after a serious accident, when do I need an injury attorney after a crash?

 

The first thing to do after a crash is to make sure you (and your passengers) are alright.

“After a car crash, the first thing you should do is make sure no one is seriously injured. You may need to call emergency services. Regardless, you’ll probably need to call the police and/or ask 911 to send an ambulance. If you are injured and not sure if it’s serious, call a friend or family member who can come over and stay with you and help you stay calm until help arrives.” – Pete Leehey, Personal Injury Attorney, The Biker Lawyers

The second thing you need to do is call your insurance company. Your insurance agent will help you figure out what to do next.

Do not admit fault to anyone. Often, even in a motorcycle or car accident that seems pretty straightforward, things aren’t what they seem.

If possible, document everything that happened by taking photos or videos from different angles of both vehicles involved in the crash (front and back). This will help prove how much damage was done by other drivers at fault for causing injuries instead of just trying to minimize them as much as possible. It may also help prove where in the roadway the collision happened. Think of it as collecting evidence that could be very helpful later.

Accidents involving a car and motorcycle are especially devastating

Motorcycle accidents are especially devastating to riders and their families, with the fatality rate being higher than for cars. This is due to a number of factors, including:

  • Motorcycles are less visible than automobiles. Drivers often don’t see motorcycles until the last moment, if at all.
  • Motorcycles lack many features that protect passengers in a car crash, such as airbags and seatbelts.

Injuries sustained during motorcycle crashes can be more severe than those sustained in an automobile accident because there isn’t as much protection between you and the road surface when your bike falls over or crashes into stationary objects like guardrails or parked cars.

A Motorcycle Crash resulting in Wrongful Death

There are many reasons why a motorcycle crash could result in wrongful death.

If the rider is hit by another vehicle, it can cause severe injuries that may kill the rider.

In fact, because of their small size and lack of protection, motorcycle riders are more likely to suffer traumatic brain injury (TBI) or even die after suffering a serious car accident than those in cars or trucks.

If someone’s negligence causes an accident that results in your loved one’s death (like if a distracted driver runs into them), you can work with a personal injury attorney and pursue legal action against that party for damages such as loss of support and services, loss of accumulations to the estate, and medical expenses or funeral costs associated with your loss.

The driving decisions of the motorcyclist before the crash will also be put under a microscope. Things like speed, braking, location on the roadway, and evasive action attempted will all be considered. There is 100% fault to be divided up between the drivers involved in a crash, so everything that happened in the moments leading up to the crash is important.

Each case is unique, so it is important to speak with a qualified wrongful death attorney early.

When do I speak to a lawyer about a personal injury?

  • When you have been injured in a car accident or motorcycle accident.
  • When you have been injured by someone else’s negligence.

In short, if another party is responsible for your injuries (whether it was intentional or not), then it’s important to contact an attorney as soon as possible. If you aren’t sure who is responsible, contact an attorney for a free case evaluation.

Will insurance cover all my medical bills after an accident?

You may think that the insurance company will pay for all of your medical and accident-related bills and other losses —but that often isn’t true. Commonly, an injured party fails to consider long-term factors such as pain and suffering, disability, or physical therapy. They tend to assume that the health insurance companies will cover these types of expenses in the future.

In fact, some insurance companies will still try to deny coverage or dispute damages even after they’ve admitted fault! That’s why it’s essential to contact an attorney immediately so that they can begin working on your case immediately and fight any efforts by the other party or their insurance company from trying to avoid responsibility for their actions.

Should I hire a lawyer?

If you have been injured in a car accident, motorcycle accident or slip and fall, you may need to hire an attorney.

Personal injury cases and filing personal injury claims can be complex. If you have been injured in a car accident, motorcycle accident or slip and fall, you may need an injury attorney. You should speak to a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident.

In most cases, people who are involved in accidents that occur on roads or sidewalks will contact the insurance company to file claims. However, if the at-fault party has no insurance or if your injuries were severe enough to warrant more money than the insurance coverage of the other driver, we recommend speaking with an injury attorney as soon after the accident happens as is reasonably possible.

If someone else’s negligence caused your injuries, then they should be held responsible for paying for those damages and losses associated with your injuries.

If you have been injured because of another person’s careless actions (i.e., failure to yield, driving under the influence, failure to maintain control of a vehicle, etc.) it may be possible for you to receive compensation from that person even though he does not have any money!

This is where hiring an experienced personal injury lawyer becomes critical for any victim looking for justice after suffering serious personal injuries resulting from someone else’s negligence behind the wheel!

Conclusion

If you’ve been injured in an accident, don’t just accept the insurance company’s offer. It may not be enough money to cover all your medical expenses, lost wages, disability, pain and suffering, and how it will affect your life in the future. A good personal injury lawyer can help you maximize the compensation you receive for your injuries and avoid long-term financial problems.

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