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Are Motorcycle Helmets Mandatory?

I’m personal injury attorney Mike Lombardi. Laws requiring bikers to wear a motorcycle helmet vary from state to state. Do you know the laws in your state? It should go without saying that wearing a motorcycle helmet when riding will likely keep you from receiving a serious brain injury should you be in an accident.

Laws vary from state to state

Nonetheless, laws governing mandatory motorcycle helmet use vary from state to state, and they also change from time to time as new laws are enacted. We strongly advocate wearing a motorcycle helmet when you are out riding, no matter what the distance is.

However, it’s not always mandatory right now. Nineteen states have a mandatory helmet law. There are 28 other states with only a partial law for certain riders, and three others that have no helmet law at all.

Know the laws in your state

As a motorcyclist, it’s very important that you know what the law is in the state where you reside. If you are riding in another state, you should definitely check out their laws as well. There are different types of regulations: federal and state regulations.

Federal law

The federal law states that all helmets must meet or exceed a safety standard set by the Department of Transportation or DOT in 2013. This regulation was put in force to help reduce the availability of novelty helmets, which don’t meet current federal safety standards.

State laws (Rhode Island)

All state laws have to follow federal regulations, but they can also pass their own versions that include the federal ones. In Rhode Island, the law requires that any motorcycle operator under the age of 21 has to wear a helmet.

In addition, all brand new operators, no matter what their age, have to wear a helmet for one year after the date their motorcycle operator’s license was issued. Other laws in Rhode Island say that, regardless of age, operators are required to wear approved eye protection at all times, and all motorcycle passengers must wear helmets.

State laws (Massachusetts)

In Massachusetts, all drivers and riders must wear both a motorcycle helmet and protective eyewear. The law also applies to people riding in sidecars. Eye protection consists of goggles or a protective face shield.

Let’s say your bike is not equipped with a windshield or a screen. Even if you are a careful and responsible motorcyclist and wear a motorcycle helmet and all the protective gear, accidents do happen.

If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, give me a call or text me at Mike Lombardi Injury Attorneys, so we can set up a time to discuss your case and answer any questions you may have. We want to hear from you and will be happy to help you in any way we can.

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