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Can I Claim Compensation For Cycling Without A Bike Helmet?

By Lewis Cobain. Last Updated 11th April 2023. If you’re wondering ‘can I claim compensation for cycling without a bike helmet?’, this guide can help.

'can I claim compensation for cycling without a bike helmet?'

‘can I claim compensation for cycling without a bike helmet?’

No matter whether you were wearing a bike helmet or not, the most common form of accident from a cycling accident and the most common type of claim we see are for head injuries. A question that we are asked is whether you can claim compensation for cycling without a bike helmet. So, if you have been involved in a bike accident and were not wearing a helmet, does this prevent you from making a compensation claim?

In the guide below, we look at how a personal injury solicitor can help you to claim compensation for cycling without a bike helmet if you are injured. To start your claim:

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Cycling Accident Claims – How Is Eligibility Determined?

If you’ve suffered injuries while cycling without a helmet in the UK, you may wonder if you are eligible for compensation. In order to claim, you must be able to demonstrate that another road user owed you a duty of care. In addition, you must prove that your injuries were caused by a disregard of this duty. This means that road users need to act in a manner that reduces the risk of causing harm to others while navigating the roads.

Rules 211-213 of the Highway Code gives cyclists additional protections while on the road. If you were injured because a driver broke one of these rules, it could be said that they did not abide by the duty of care. The Highway Code sets rules for all road users in England, Scotland and Wales. Some of these rules may be backed up by legislation.

I Was Not Wearing A Bike Helmet – Can I Still Claim If Injured?

You could still make a cycling accident claim even if you did not wear a helmet. To do so, you would need to prove that negligence occurred. This involves a road user breaching the duty of care they owed you and causing you harm as a result.

Call our advisors for free advice about claiming for injuries suffered while cycling. If you were owed a duty of care and can submit supporting evidence that a breach in this caused your injuries, you may be able to recover compensation.

Is There A Bicycle Helmet Law In The UK?

You may wonder whether there is a law surrounding cycling without a helmet in the UK. The Highway Code recommends that you wear a helmet that conforms to current regulations and is the correct size as well as being securely fastened. This is according to Rule 59 which also states that there is evidence that wearing a helmet that is correctly fitted can reduce your risk of sustaining a head injury such as a traumatic brain injury.

If you are wondering whether you could start a claim after cycling without a helmet and being injured in a road traffic accident, our advisors are on hand to offer free no obligation advice. Should they find your case valid, they could connect you with a cycle accident solicitor to represent your case.

Get in touch with our advisors if you have any additional questions regarding cycle helmet law in the UK. We are available 24/7 to assist you.

How Does Contributory Negligence Affect My Claim?

You may be wondering ‘can I claim compensation for cycling without a bike helmet?’. If you can prove that negligence occurred, you could be eligible to seek compensation.

However, if you were not wearing a helmet and you suffered a head injury, consideration may be given to whether you contributed to the severity of your head injury. This is known as contributory negligence. As such, you may need to prove that even if you were wearing a helmet, the head injury you sustained still would have occurred.

However, not wearing a helmet would not have had an impact on any other injuries you suffered, as such contributory negligence would not apply to these.

For more information, please get in touch on the number above.

Does Not Wearing A Helmet Make Me At Fault?

When making a bicycle injury claim, not wearing a helmet does not necessarily mean that you were at fault for your injuries. Whilst there are good reasons to wear a helmet, as they are not a legal requirement the law does not say that the failure to wear one amounts to contributory negligence.

The courts looking at your claim for a bike accident would simply accept that by not wearing a helmet, you ran a greater risk of contributing to your own injuries. They would then assess the merits of your individual case and claim. The court will look at factors that could have determined whether or not you should have worn a helmet such as the road conditions, levels of traffic, and how much experience you have cycling overall.

For more information on the question of ‘can I claim compensation for cycling without a bike helmet?’, please read on.

Calculating Compensation For Cycling Injuries Without A Helmet

If you have suffered bike injuries without a helmet as a result of third-party negligence, you may be wondering how much compensation you could be entitled to, and whether or not bicycle helmet laws in the UK could affect what you receive.

Road traffic accident compensation can usually be split into two heads of claim: general damages, and special damages. General damages is the head of claim that compensates you for your physical and mental injuries, as well the effect those injuries will have on your life going forward.

You can find some examples of what you might receive in terms of general damages in the table below, which includes guidelines from the 2022 edition of the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG).

Body part and severity of injury Settlement band Injury notes
Very severe brain damage/ injury £282,010 to £403,990 This bracket is the highest level of compensation awarded, though more serious injuries may acquire a higher settlement.
Moderately severe brain damage/ injury £219,070 to £282,010 The claimant may be somewhat dependant on others over the medium term.
Very severe scarring – disfigurement of the face £29,780 to £97,330 The highest settlements will be given to younger women.
Significant disfigurement of the face £9,110 to £30,090 Disfigurement can be corrected by surgery and any mental health problems can abate over time.
Severe back injuries (iii) £38,780 to £69,730 The severe category of injury such as serious breaks and which will lead to loss of mobility.
Moderate back injuries (ii) £12,510 to £27,760 Moderate soft tissue injuries which you can recover from over the medium term.
Minor back injuries (i) £7,890 to £12,510 Much simpler back injuries than the subsequent categories.
Severe ankle injuries £31,310 to £50,060 Much more serious and complex fractures, or several fractures to the ankle.
Moderate ankle injuries £13,740 to £26,590 Less serious fracture of the ankle and other similarly severe injuries.

Special damages compensates you for the financial impact of your injuries. For example, you may need to have a stairlift fitted to your home following a severe leg injury, and the cost of this could be included under special damages.

Under UK law, a helmet is not legally required when riding a bicycle, and as such, it may not affect your compensation if someone else was at fault for the accident. Read on to learn more about split liability, and how it might affect your compensation.

No Win No Fee Solicitors For A Cycling Accident Without A Helmet

Now that we’ve discussed the UK bicycle helmet law and if you can make a claim when injured after cycling without a helmet in the UK, you might be interested in knowing how a solicitor could benefit your claim. A solicitor could help make the claims process easier for you in various ways. They could help with:

  • Gathering relevant evidence
  • Organising an independent medical appointment
  • Negotiating with the defendant, if necessary
  • Ensuring your claim is filed in full

However, if you are concerned about paying a high upfront fee, you may benefit from hiring a No Win No Fee solicitor.

A solicitor working under this arrangement could offer you a type of No Win No Fee agreement known as a Conditional Fee Agreement. This means you typically aren’t asked to pay a fee upfront whilst any ongoing fees are also usually covered.

Furthermore, if your claim is unsuccessful, you aren’t required to pay your solicitor for their work. However, in the event that your claim is successfully settled, a success fee is paid out of your cycle accident compensation to your solicitor. You won’t ever be overcharged for this fee as it is capped by law under the Conditional Fee Agreements Order 2013.

Our panel of solicitors work under No Win No Fee arrangements and could help you get one step closer to being awarded compensation. To find out more, get in touch for a free consultation. All you need to do is:

Learn More About Claiming For Bike Injuries Without A Helmet

For more information on claiming for bike injuries without a helmet and other claims:

Thanks for reading our guide. We hope we’ve answered the question of ‘can I claim compensation for cycling without a bike helmet?’.

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    • Patrick Mallon

      Patrick is a Grade A solicitor having qualified in 2005. He's an an expert in accident at work and public liability claims and is currently our head of the EL/PL department. Get in touch today for free to see how we can help you.