Riding a motorcycle can be risky. Motorcyclists are susceptible to serious harm when they are involved in accidents, sometimes flying off their bikes or colliding with other vehicles. This can result in severe injuries, including traumatic brain damage.
To reduce the risk of head injury, it is important to wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle. However, Illinois does not have any laws requiring motorcyclists to wear one.
In Illinois, there is no law that requires motorcyclists to wear helmets while riding. This is quite unusual, as most states do have helmet laws on the books. In fact, Illinois is one of only two states without such requirements; the other state is Iowa.
Despite this, the statistics are clear: wearing a motorcycle helmet could save your life. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), motorcycle helmets are 37% effective at preventing deaths for riders and 41% effective for passengers. Additionally, helmets reduce the risk of head injury by 69%.
Any damage to the brain can result in lifelong complications and even death. Helmets cushion your skull from impact, helping reduce the severity of a brain injury. Although Illinois does not require you to wear a helmet, wearing one can better protect you in the event of an accident.
Additionally, failure to wear a helmet can impact your ability to recover compensation. Illinois is a fault accident state, meaning that victims of traffic accidents can file an insurance claim or lawsuit against a negligent driver.
Motorcyclists often face extra scrutiny while filing a claim. Insurance companies may automatically assume that the motorcyclist was at fault. If you were not wearing a helmet at the time of the accident, the insurer could use this fact as justification to offer a smaller award or as proof that you were at fault.
You have the right to choose when you want to wear a motorcycle helmet in Illinois. It is not illegal to ride without a helmet in the state. If you encounter this situation, it is important to have a Chicago motorcycle accident attorney on your side who can defend you against these accusations of fault.
The moments after a motorcycle accident can be scary. You may be suffering from severe injuries and need immediate medical care. Additionally, you may want to gather evidence to support your future claim.
Take the following steps after the crash to protect yourself and get the help that you need.
After seeking medical care, contact a Chicago personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Your lawyer will evaluate your case, explain your legal options, and help you take your first steps toward filing a claim.