Motorcycle accidents and helmet laws | The Dickerson & Smith Law Group
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Motorcycle accidents and helmet laws

Virginia law requires all motorcycle operators to use goggles, safety glasses, a face shield or a motorcycle that has a built-in safety glass or windshield. Motorcycle operators and their passengers are also required to wear protective helmets. Those helmets must be approved for use with motorcycles.

In spite of Virginia's motorcycle helmet laws, it is not uncommon for attorneys to get questions about motorcycles and helmet use. For example, a motorcyclist might ask, "Do I need to wear my helmet if I only ride on the weekends?" In Virginia, the answer to this question is certainly yes. However, if a motorcyclist is ever unsure, he or she can contact the State Department of Motor Vehicles to review the law in more detail.

Another question that personal injury attorneys hear a lot is from people injured in motorcycle accidents who want to file a claim for damages. Sometimes a motorcycle accident victim may not have been wearing a helmet at the time of the crash, and this person will want to know whether the failure to wear a helmet will hurt a claim for damages. The answer to this question is both yes and no. The plaintiff will probably still have a claim; however, the amount of damages recoverable could be discounted based on an evaluation of how badly he or she may have been hurt in the event the motorcyclist had chosen to wear a helmet.

Motorcyclists who were hurt due to no fault of their own may require the assistance of a personal injury lawyer to pursue a claim for damages. If successfully navigated, such a claim could help an injured motorcyclist get money to pay for his or her medical care, time spent unable to work, pain and suffering, damaged property and other issues related to an accident.

Source: FindLaw, "Motorcycle Accident FAQ," accessed Nov. 25, 2016

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