May 17, 2020
Can I Recover Compensation in a California Bicycle Accident if I Did Not Have a Helmet on?
Unlike motorcycle helmet laws, California law does not mandate bicycle helmets for adults. Wearing a helmet is encouraged and will reduce your chances of getting injured. But many cyclists choose not to wear one. And this could be to your detriment in the case of an injury depending on the circumstances. But even bicyclists who do wear a helmet are not guaranteed to be protected from serious injury. In fact, collisions with a vehicle could result in serious injuries to a bicyclist in California. If you or a loved one were seriously injured in a bicycle accident, ask our Los Angeles bicycle accident lawyer for help with your claim.
Compensation for accident injuries hinges on establishing fault. If a cyclist can prove that an accident and subsequent injury were the fault of the other party, there is no issue. But in the case where a cyclist has not taken appropriate precautions by wearing a helmet, it may mean a lesser amount in compensation or even none at all. That means that a trier of fact could find that you were partially at fault for your serious injuries if you were not wearing a helmet even though you were not legally required to do so. This is because a jury may agree that it would have been reasonable for a bicyclist to wear a helmet. That is what the defense lawyer and the insurance lawyer will be arguing.
When making a determination regarding compensation, the insurance company or the court will look at the injury itself. If injuries were to the extremities, the lack of a helmet would be of no consequence. However, if your injuries were head or neck trauma, they may decide that your injuries would have been prevented with the wearing of a helmet and may deny the claim entirely.
Determining fault in a bicycle accident can be a complex process. If you were injured in a bicycle accident, you should contact a Los Angeles bicycle accident lawyer to understand your rights to compensation for your injuries. For more information and a FREE case review, contact us today at (888) 588-1777. We are ready and willing to help.