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What should I know about Missouri’s helmet law changes?

by | Apr 20, 2021 | Firm News |

In 2020, Missouri made a significant chance to its motorcycle helmet laws. In July of last year, Gov. Mike Parson signed legislation that repealed part of the state’s helmet laws. When the new motorcycle helmet laws took affect in August, only riders under age 26 now are required to wear helmet while motorcycling.

Missouri helmet law change

Part of Missouri’s new helmet law requires motorcyclists over 26 who don’t wear helmets to have:

  • Medical insurance
  • Carry proof of another form of insurance that will cover any accident injury costs

However, many road safety groups, such as Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, opposed reducing Missouri’s helmet requirements for motorcycle riders. According to the Center for Disease Control, riders who wear helmets reduce their chance of suffering a head injury in a crash by 69%. Those who wear helmets while motorcycling also reduce their risks of dying in an accident by 37%.

Yet, some motorcycling advocates, such as Freedom of the Road Riders, cheer the new helmet law’s adoption. They have pushed to require helmets for more riders as an issue of personal freedom. State Rep. Jered Taylor, who backed the legislation, said he felt riders who are over age 26 are old enough to decide for themselves if they want to wear a helmet.

Who is liable for a motorcyclist’s injuries in an accident

If a motorcyclist not wearing a helmet suffers a head injury in a crash, the person who is at fault for the accident is liable for paying for those injuries. The personal injury claim goes through the insurance provider for the person responsible for the crash. Even if you were partially at fault for causing an accident while riding a motorcycle, you could receive some compensation from the other driver’s insurance company.

Motorcyclists are more likely to injuries in accidents with cars, whether they wear helmets or not. While wearing a helmet may protect you from life-changing injuries, you still may need to seek personal injury compensation for serious injuries you suffer in a crash.