If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident where you were not at fault, but also not wearing a helmet, you may be wondering if you have the ability to file a claim against the other driver for damages. In the state of Colorado, it is not illegal to not be wearing a helmet as long as you’re over the age of 18.
If you’ve made the decision to not wear a helmet and are injured by another driver, you may still file a claim against them. However, the fact that you chose not to wear a helmet can impact the amount of damages you recover from insurance or the other driver. Having a knowledgeable personal injury attorney on your side can help you recover as much as possible, though, no matter your helmet preferences.
While it may not be against the law to not wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle, that does not mean it’s safe. Colorado is a beautiful state with many sunny days where riding without a helmet can feel like a great choice, but all it takes is one rogue driver not paying attention to impact the rest of your life. In 2016 in Colorado 125 motorcyclists died, most of them while not wearing a helmet.
Experience has shown us that many of our client’s traumatic brain injuries and deaths could have easily been prevented simply by throwing on a helmet before heading out. Additionally, wearing a helmet can assist in maximizing your damages if the accident is determined to be at the hands of the other driver.
Colorado conforms to the comparative negligence legal ideology, which means that if you’re found to be less than 50% responsible for your accident, you may seek compensation. However, the percentage of responsibility you are found to have will determine the amount of damages that you are able to receive. If you’re found to be more than 50% responsible for your accident, you will not be allowed compensation.
Due to this being a comparative negligence state, the failure to wear a helmet will affect your case depending on the injuries you’ve suffered. If, for example, you broke your leg, then there’s very little possibility of that injury being tied to not wearing a helmet. On the other hand, if you’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury or neck injuries, it’s very likely that a judge or jury could be convinced that you had a higher degree of responsibility and reduce the amount of compensation you receive.
If you’re looking to determine what kind of responsibility you hold and what the likelihood is of you collecting damages, contacting a top Fort Collins personal injury attorney is your best course of action.