For nearly fifty years, Michigan has had one of the most comprehensive motorcycle helmet requirements in the state. Everyone riding a bike was expected to wear a helmet, or face legal consequences if caught without one.
Now, that situation has changed. Governor Rick Snyder recently signed into law a bill that allows some Michigan bikers to ride without their helmets, as long as they meet the law’s new requirements. Motorcyclists who don’t meet the requirements for riding without a helmet may still face criminal penalties if they are caught without their helmets.
The new MI motorcycle law allows motorcyclists to ride without a helmet on Michigan roads only if they meet the following requirements:
- Rider must be 21 years of age or older;
- He or she must have $20,000 or more of insurance coverage for injuries; and
- The rider must have passed a motorcycle safety course or had a motorcycle endorsement for at least 2 years.
Passengers may also ride without helmets if they are 21 years of age or older and have an additional $20,000 of insurance coverage. The extra insurance can be purchased by either the passenger or the driver of the motorcycle.
Violating the new law is a misdemeanor, with a maximum possible sentence of $100 in fines, 90 days in jail, or both.
Motorcycle helmets can prevent or reduce the severity of many types of head and facial injuries, including traumatic brain injuries. However, no helmet can prevent every accident or injury, especially when another person’s negligence is at fault. At Lipton Law, our experienced motorcycle accident lawyers in Southfield strive to provide exceptional representation and advice to each of our clients. If you’ve been injured in an accident, call us today at (248) 557-1688 for a free and confidential case evaluation.
Michigan is one of several U.S. states that require motorcycle riders to wear helmets when riding their bike. The National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA), estimates that motorcycle helmets make the difference between life and death for 37 percent of motorcycle accident victims each year.
Despite helmets’ life-saving abilities, however, opponents of Michigan’s motorcycle helmet law seek to get it repealed nearly every year. What opponents rarely mention is that Michigan’s helmet law does more than save lives. It also saves every vehicle owner in Michigan money on their insurance bill each year.
Michigan’s no-fault car insurance law is one of the most comprehensive in the United States. If a car crash occurs, the drivers’ insurance covers the costs of any injuries suffered in the accident, no matter who is hurt. Insurance must offer lifetime benefits for certain lifelong injuries or permanent disabilities. All car owners are required to carry this insurance, but motorcyclists are not. When a car and a motorcycle crash in Michigan, the car owner’s insurance pays for everyone’s injuries, including the motorcyclists’ injuries. If bikers were allowed to ride without a helmet, the costs of serious injuries in motorcycle accidents would almost certainly increase – and so would insurance premiums.
Drivers or motorcyclists who suffer permanent impairments or disfigurement as well as family members of motorcyclists killed in an accident may be able to seek compensation from the person who caused the crash in order to cover bills that insurance does not cover. If you have been seriously injured in a motorcycle crash in Michigan, please don’t hesitate to call the experienced Southfield motorcycle accident lawyers at Lipton Law, P.C. We will help you seek the compensation you deserve from insurance companies or negligent drivers. Call us today at 248-557-1688 for a free consultation.