As an Atlanta motorcycle accident attorney, we know that motorcycle crashes are some of the most dangerous of all motor vehicle accidents. That’s because the human body simply can’t withstand the impact of a two-ton machine. The only thing that stands between you and the car or SUV is a plastic helmet. The good news is that helmets are said to prevent a lot of serious head injuries. The bad news is that there’s nothing to prevent the rest of your body from suffering serious, even fatal injuries. That’s why Atlanta motorcycle accident attorneys take these cases so seriously.
If you are hurt in a motorcycle accident, you could suffer all sorts of injuries. Some of these may include:
- Neck injuries
- Back and spine injuries
- Head injuries including a traumatic brain injury
- Broken bones and sprains
- Burns, lacerations and contusions
Your Atlanta motorcycle accident attorney will fight to get you compensation for these injuries. Just keep in mind – if you aren’t wearing your helmet at the time of the crash, it can impact your chance of recovering damages.
What is the Motorcycle Helmet Laws in Georgia?
In most states, the law only requires you to wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle if you’re under a certain age. This isn’t the case in Georgia. Georgia law requires that anybody driving or riding on a motorcycle wear a helmet. This law can be found in the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, section 40-6:315.
According to the law, you can’t just wear any old helmet. You are legally required to wear a helmet that is approved by the State. Every year, the State posts a list of the approved headgear. For example, you can’t wear the same sort of helmet on a motorcycle that you would wear while riding a bicycle. The goal of these laws is to protect you. It’s also designed to protect your passenger.
Obviously, the biggest problem with not wearing your helmet is that it can leave you vulnerable to injury. If you don’t have anything to protect your head, you can end up with a concussion. You can also suffer a traumatic brain injury which can lead to long-term issues. Some of the signs of a traumatic brain injury (TBI) are:
- Ringing in the ears
- Slurred speech
- Vision problems
- Fatigue or insomnia
- Difficulty concentrating
If you suffer any of these things, you need to get to the hospital right away. You also need to call a skilled Atlanta motorcycle accident lawyer.
Atlanta Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Understand Why Not Wearing a Helmet Can Impact Your Case
Some people think that, just because they’re involved in a motorcycle crash, they’ll be entitled to thousands or millions of dollars in damages. This isn’t the case. In order to get any money, your Atlanta motorcycle accident attorney needs to prove two things. First, they need to prove that the other driver was at fault. Second, they need to prove that you suffered actual damages.
The problem with not wearing your helmet is that it can work against you. The defendant’s lawyer is going to argue that your injuries could’ve been prevented had you been wearing your helmet. And, in Georgia, this can affect that amount of compensation you receive. This is because Georgia follows a comparative negligence rule. Under this rule, your damages can be reduced by your percentage of fault. This means that, if you’re found to be 20% at fault, your judgment will be reduced by 20%. So, your demand for $100,000 will be reduced to $80,000.
Speak with a Seasoned Atlanta Motorcycle Accident Attorney as Soon as Possible
If you’re hurt in a motorcycle accident, you’re likely going to suffer very serious injuries. The last thing you’ll want to do is sit on the phone fighting with the insurance company. This is why it’s important that you call an experienced Atlanta motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible after your wreck. You can call and schedule your free, initial consultation the same day as your accident. Or, if you need to, wait until you complete your initial round of medical treatment to call our office.
When you sit down with your attorney, make sure to ask any questions you may have. You also need to let them know what happened. Be upfront and honest. The last thing you want to do is have your Atlanta motorcycle accident attorney be blindsided halfway through the case.