Ohio Motorcycle Safety Law & How it Can Affect Your Claim
Ohio motorcycle safety laws are meant to keep you and other motorists safe while on the road. If you’ve been injured on a motorcycle because of another’s carelessness, our Ohio motorcycle accident lawyers can help you. Do not hesitate to reach out to our lawyers at Kisling, Nestico & Redick today.
As a motorcycle rider, you need to be aware of all Ohio laws that impact your ability to own and ride your bike. From the rules surrounding riding gear to the differences in traffic laws for you and vehicles, you need to be fully informed of your responsibilities to keep yourself safe and avoid liability in an accident.
As the motorcycle rider, you will be placed under a microscope. Any possible mistake or violation of a traffic or safety law could lead to discussions of your negligence – something you want to avoid while seeking compensation from an at-fault driver. If there is evidence you did something wrong, you may not gain as much compensation for your injuries, or you may not receive any at all.
To learn more about Ohio motorcycle safety laws and how these could impact your motorcycle accident compensation claim, contact our experienced motorcycle accident lawyers at Kisling, Nestico & Redick at 1-800-HURT-NOW.
Obtaining a Motorcycle License
Ohio’s motorcycle safety laws begin with regulating who can operate a motorcycle. To drive a motorcycle or a scooter within the state, you must have a valid permit or license.
To begin the process of obtaining a motorcycle license, you must be at least 15 years and six months old, pass a written exam, pass a vision test, and then obtain a Temporary Instruction Permit Identification Card (TIPIC). The TIPIC is valid for up to one year. If you are over 18, you may take the motorcycle skills test or you can take a Motorcycle Ohio course, which waives the skills test if the course is completed within 60 days of obtaining your TIPIC. If you are a minor, you must have your permit for at least six months before you can take the final test and obtain your license.
Motorcycle Safety Gear
Ohio law requires minors under 18 and individuals of any age who have temporary instruction permits to wear a protective helmet that has been approved by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Every other rider, meaning those who are 18 or older and have a full motorcycle license, are entitled to ride without helmets.
If you are in an accident and are not wearing a helmet, this could impact your claim and potential compensation. If you were legally required to wear a helmet and you were not, then this may be construed as contributory negligence. An insurer or the other party’s lawyer may claim it was negligent not to wear a helmet even if you were entitled to go without. You should have an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer help you deal with the potential complications that arise from foregoing a helmet.
Additionally, Ohio law requires you to wear eye protection unless your motorcycle has a full windscreen. This eye protection could be glasses, goggles, or a shield on a helmet.
Motorcycle Traffic and Safety Laws
Ohio has a number of laws regarding motorcycles that could potentially impact a claim for compensation after an accident. These laws state you must:
- Ride facing forward in a permanent or regular seat or saddle.
- Ride sitting astride the seat, with one leg placed on each side of the motorcycle.
- Only carry a passenger in an attached or regular seat.
- Only carry as many passengers as the motorcycle is designed for, which means there must be a seat and footrests for each passenger.
- Have handlebars that are no higher than your shoulders while you are on the motorcycle.
- Have a headlight and brake lights.
- Have one or more mirrors that provide a clear view behind you.
- Have turn signals so long as the motorcycle was built after January 1, 1968.
As a motorcycle rider, you are required to follow the same traffic laws as vehicles. This includes adhering to all speed limits, properly using lanes, and keeping proper distances between you and other vehicles. However, there are a couple of differences.
Motorcycles in Ohio can ride two abreast within one lane. Lane splitting, which is a controversial topic, is not specifically allowed or prohibited in Ohio. If you are caught doing it by the police, you could be ticketed for improper lane usage. If there is evidence you were driving on the lines or between vehicles during a crash, the other side may argue you contributed to the accident, and therefore your injuries. If lane splitting is an issue within your motorcycle accident claim, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer right away.
Ohio Motorcycle Laws May Impact Your Compensation Claim
Ohio safety laws can impact your claim for compensation after an accident. The most obvious way is in regard to determining fault. In many motorcycle accidents, someone did not follow the law. For example, many motorcycle crashes are caused by a vehicle turning left into a bike that is moving through an intersection. The vehicle should have yielded to the vehicle with the right of way, which was the motorcycle. This helps establish the vehicle’s liability following the crash.
If there is evidence you violated a traffic or safety law, then you may be considered fully or partly responsible for the accident. This is known as comparative negligence and can be a significant issue. If an insurer determines you were up to 50 percent responsible for the accident, then your compensation will be reduced by the amount of your liability. For example, if you were 25 percent responsible, your compensation will be reduced by a quarter. However, if you are found to be 51 percent or more responsible, then you are prohibited from obtaining any compensation for your injuries.
Contact Our Ohio Motorcycle Accident Lawyers for Help
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident, contact our experienced personal injury lawyers at Kisling, Nestico & Redick. We will thoroughly investigate your accident, and gather as much information about what happened as we can. We will use this information to analyze the strength of your claim for compensation and to strategize the next best steps. If another party was at fault for the crash and your injuries, we will guide you through the process of seeking compensation.
To learn more, contact us or call 1-800-HURT-NOW to schedule your initial consultation.