Indiana Motorcycle Laws
I’m David Holub, an attorney concentrating on personal injury law in northwest Indiana.
Welcome to Personal Injury Primer, where we break down the law into simple terms, provide legal tips, and discuss topics related to personal injury law.
Today’s question comes from listener whose husband was seriously hurt in a motorcycle crash. She asks “a lady pulled out in front of my husband’s motorcycle, it is clearly her fault, but he didn’t have his helmet on, can we still sue? “
Each state has different laws regulating the operation of motorcycles, and a conscientious motorcyclist will consider these differences when traveling over state lines.
The American Motorcyclist Association has a useful tool that allows people to search motorcycle laws by each state: http://www.americanmotorcyclist.com/Rights/State-Laws.aspx
In Indiana, motorcyclists are not required to wear safety helmets if they are 18 years old or older.
However, safety helmets as well as protective glasses, goggles, or face shield are required to be worn by motorcyclists under the age of 18. See Ind. Code 9-19-7-1.
Although safety helmets are an important part of protective gear and should be worn, the legal significance of Indiana’s law means that in most circumstances, if an adult motorcyclist who is not wearing a helmet is injured in an accident with another motor vehicle, the motorcyclist not wearing a helmet cannot be shown to be comparatively at fault merely because he or she was not wearing a helmet.
That said we have represented many motorcycle accident victims and their families. It is not a scientific study, BUT the injuries are less severe if the riders are wearing helmets.
I know wearing a helmet is inconvenient and confining. But, if you think about the people who may have to suffer through the consequences of you getting injured, would you want them to have to deal with you and minor injuries, or you and catastrophic injuries?
I hope you found this information helpful. If you have questions about your legal rights if you get hurt due to the carelessness of another person, or as a result of substandard medical care, or due to a product defect, construction injury, or any other type of personal injury, please give us a call at (219) 736-9700. You can also learn more about us by visiting our website at DavidHolubLaw.com – while there make sure you request a copy of our book “Fighting for Truth”.