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Fines for Not Wearing a Motorcycle Helmet in New Jersey

NJ Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

When riding a motorcycle, it is very important to wear a helmet. Helmets are arguably the most important piece of safety equipment for motorcyclists. In fact, in New Jersey, it is required by law to wear an approved motorcycle helmet when operating a motorcycle. However, that does not mean that everyone who rides a motorcycle follows this rule. Accordingly, there are fines you can be made to pay if you ride a motorcycle without a helmet.

Under New Jersey law, you can be fined $25 for not wearing an approved motorcycle helmet. However, there are also fines if a passenger is present on a motorcycle without a helmet, especially if that motorcycle is not designed to fit two people. In those cases, you will be paying somewhere between $50 and $100.

To have New Jersey motorcycle accident lawyers Jerry Friedman go over your situation, call 1-800-529-4464.

What is the Penalty for Not Wearing a Motorcycle Helmet in New Jersey

Like most states, New Jersey has laws requiring people riding motorcycles to wear helmets. This is because helmets are incredibly important to rider safety. Helmets save lives in motorcycle accidents that would otherwise be lethal, and they also prevent serious injuries like TBIs. Because helmets are so important, they have been deemed necessary for motorcycle riders, and there are legal penalties for failing to wear them.

Failure to Wear a Helmet When Driving a Motorcycle

Under N.J.S.A. § 39:3-76.7, motorcyclists are required to wear a DOT-approved helmet at all times when riding a motorcycle. These helmets are required to have a neck or chin strap and must be approved by the chief administrator.

The penalty for failing to wear a DOT-approved helmet when operating a motorcycle is $25 per N.J.S.A. § 39:3-79.

Failure of a Motorcycle Passenger to Wear a Helmet

There are more serious penalties for motorcycle riders who have a passenger on their bike who is not wearing a helmet. N.J.S.A. § 39:3-76.5 requires all passengers on motorcycles to wear a protective helmet held to the same standards as those designed for motorcycle riders. After all, a motorcycle accident will not discriminate between injuring a motorcycle operator or a passenger.

Additionally, there are requirements for a motorcycle carrying a passenger to be appropriately designed. You can get in trouble if you have a passenger on a bike designed for only one person – helmet or not.

The penalty for having a passenger present on your motorcycle without a helmet is no less than $50 and no more than $100.

Additional Required Motorcycle Safety Equipment in New Jersey

Some other protective equipment is required under New Jersey law, in addition to helmets. Per N.J.S.A. § 39:3-76.8, motorcycle riders must also wear goggles or a face shield at all times. Alternatively, someone riding a motorcycle equipped with a windscreen does not need to wear goggles or a face shield, as the windscreen offers that protection instead. As with failure to wear a helmet, the penalty for not wearing these things is $25.

Other Consequences of Failing to Wear a Motorcycle Helmet in New Jersey

Besides fines and penalties, there are other, arguably much more severe consequences for not wearing a helmet on a motorcycle if you are unlucky enough to get in an accident. Failure to wear a helmet can make the overall legal process after a motorcycle accident much more difficult.

More Severe Injuries

The most immediate consequence of failure to wear a motorcycle helmet if you end up in a motorcycle crash is that the injuries you may sustain are likely to be much more serious. A helmet will not prevent injury in every circumstance, but it can diminish or protect you from harm in many instances. Not wearing a helmet increases the risk of nerve damage, paralysis, skull and neck fractures, traumatic brain injuries, and even death.

Difficulty with Insurance Claims

Not wearing a helmet can also make it difficult when interacting with insurance providers. Since New Jersey is a no-fault state, you will be able to get coverage to some degree regardless of anyone’s fault, but insurance companies may latch onto the fact that you were not wearing a helmet to try and exempt themselves from providing additional coverage.

Difficulty in Court

If a driver involved in a motorcycle crash has a limited or unlimited right to sue, you can have our New Jersey motorcycle accident lawyer take them to court. However, if you were not wearing a helmet when the accident happened, it can make some things trickier.

New Jersey uses “comparative negligence” in personal injury civil cases pursuant to N.J.S.A. § 2A:15-5.1. Comparative negligence is a legal system by which a plaintiff’s damages can be limited if they are partially at fault for an accident. Smart defense attorneys will use the fact that you were not wearing a helmet against you to try to reduce your recovery or make you lose the case outright.

Guarding Against Motorcycle Crash Injuries in New Jersey

There are steps you can take in addition to wearing a helmet to make sure that you stay safe on the road and abide by all traffic laws. First, it is advisable to wear a good amount of safety gear, even if it is not required under New Jersey Law. This includes padded jackets, sturdy pants, and suitable footwear. Second, stay alert at all times. One of the advantages of a motorcycle is a better field of view, so you can spot things before someone driving a regular car can in some instances. Finally, practice riding your motorcycle and make sure that you are qualified to take one out on the road.

Chat with Our New Jersey Motorcycle Accident Attorney Today

Jerry Friedman is a Atlantic City, NJ motorcycle accident attorney, and he’s here to help when you contact us at the number 1-800-529-4464.

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