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Can bikers be denied compensation for not wearing a helmet?

Motorcycles come with a risk factor to them– or at least, that’s what the insurance companies believe.

When motorcycle accidents occur, the injuries can often be a lot worse than if you are inside a vehicle. The most common injuries in motorcycle accidents are head injuries, and for that reason, there is a universal helmet law in Louisiana. 

Pierce & Shows are Baton Rouge, Louisiana-based attorneys with in-depth knowledge of motorcycle laws and experience in helping clients. So if you have gotten into an accident, with or without a helmet, our team can help you navigate the insurance company, claims, and anything else that comes your way.

Motorcycle state laws in Baton Rouge Louisiana

There are quite a few motorcycle state laws in the state of Louisiana. Louisiana is a state with a universal helmet law that requires anyone who rides a motorcycle to wear a helmet, with few exceptions. The law states that you need a helmet that contains: 

  • Adequate padding to protect the head from trauma
  • A chin strap to secure the helmet
  • An interior lining to ensure that the helmet is comfortable when it comes in contact with the head
  • A visor to protect the eyes

There are two exceptions to this requirement:

  • Police in a town, city, village or parish can allow members of organizations that are sponsoring, conducting, or participating in parades or public exhibitions to not wear helmets while participating in the parade. 
  • The law does not apply to a motorist if the vehicle has supports that meet the standard for a safety helmet, roll bar, or roll cage. A roll bar or roll cage means supports that can bear the vehicle’s weight and can protect occupants while the vehicle is resting on those supports.

Louisiana’s at-fault standard

In an at-fault state, the driver who causes an accident uses their insurance to pay for the other driver’s bills from the collision. If more than one driver is at fault, they will share the blame, and their insurance companies will decide the responsibility percentage.

For example, one driver could be 30% at fault, while another driver is 60% at fault, and a third is at 10% fault. That will be the percentage their insurance companies will pay. Being at fault also means that the other drivers can sue you for damages. 

As a result of this state-wide legal standard, a motorcycle driver may be viewed as being at fault for not wearing a helmet due to negligence. This is a particular point that insurance companies will hone in on and, at the very least, try to reduce the amount of compensation that you receive.

Contact A Motorcycle Attorney in Baton Rouge

Insurance companies aren’t in the business of trying to give out the maximum amount of money for your claim- especially if there is a law in place that allows them to partially or entirely deny a claim due to negligence.

For this reason, having an attorney who is experienced in motorcycle accidents and dealing with insurance companies is critical. An attorney like those at Pierce & Shows will be able to help you get the compensation you deserve. We want to make sure that you have someone in your corner after a motorcycle accident. If you or a loved one have been in an accident, contact us for a free consultation.

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