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Your questions answered at Visordown’s new law column

Got a biking legal question? We're here to help, thanks to the good folk at Thompsons Solicitors

WE'VE BEEN kicking off a new weekly section of the site, with some proper learned answers to your bikey legal queries. Whether you’ve been knocked off by a pissed-up driver, been stitched up by a dodgy trader, or looking down the barrel of a six-month ban for one speeding ticket too many, we can help – with some clever judicial stuff from Thompsons Solicitors, one of the biggest law firms in the country.

Send your questions to alan.dowds@visordown.com, or post on our Facebook page. We’ll answer as many as we can…

"I was knocked off my bike last year after a car pulled out of a junction in front of me. I had right of way, and the crash was totally the car driver’s fault. The problem is, I hadn’t fastened the strap on my helmet, and it came off and I sustained a (moderately) serious head injury. The police investigator found my helmet with the strap undone, and has reported that I hadn’t fastened the strap. Can I still make a claim for my injuries?

David Robinson, senior road accident specialist at Thompsons Solicitors, says: “Absolutely. The primary cause of the accident was the other driver’s fault, so providing that can be proved, and the police investigation report should help, then you should have a strong case.

“As part of a motorcycle accident claim it will then be considered whether the unfastened strap on your helmet would have prevented or reduced the extent of the injury. This will depend upon medical evidence from independently-instructed experts. They may conclude that the unfastened strap made no difference to the injury, or they may consider that had it been fastened it would have prevented the extent of the injury.

If the latter is the case, there will likely be a percentage reduction for what the law refers to as “contributory negligence”. The level of that deduction depends on the particular circumstances of the case. Generally, reductions range from 25% to 50%. What this means is that if the motorcycle accident claim was worth, for example, £100,000, it would be reduced, on these example figures, to either £75,000 or £50,000.

“Our #StayRoadSafe campaign reminds motorcyclists and other road users of why it’s important to stay alert when on the move and to wear a helmet when riding a motorcycle. We’ve included top tips on staying safe and how to make a road accident claim should you be injured.”

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