Do You Have To Wear A Motorcycle Helmet In New York?

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Motorcycle helmet laws protect motorcycle riders and passengers from serious injury or death in the event of a crash. These laws vary by state, but they generally fall into one of three categories: universal, partial, or no law.

This article will answer do you have to wear a motorcycle helmet in New York. Yes, you do! The state’s laws are universal, and everyone must wear one, with no exceptions. The state of New York has much more to offer in this regard than a simple and basic law.

So, I suggest you stick around for a few more minutes, so you can clearly understand its regulations regarding this matter. So, let’s get into it!

Motorcycle Helmet Laws And Rules In New York

Let's find out if adults have to wear bike helmets in NY or not

New York State has a helmet law that applies to everyone, regardless of age. Unlike other states that don’t require older people to wear helmets, New York has devised a law that puts everyone under it.

The law also requires people riding motorcycles or mopeds to wear eye protection.

The type of protection required is not specified in the law but must at least be shatter-resistant lenses and be able to reduce glare from the sun and other sources of light.

This allows for a safer riding experience, day or night. This law has been around since 1967, and no changes or amendments have been made. It is a great one, and I believe it keeps most riders safe from life-altering injuries.

Other states only require people under 18 or under 25 to wear helmets, which is unacceptable. Older people are at just as much risk as younger ones, so there is no point in getting a specific age group to wear one.

Motorcycle Helmet Requirements In NY

The New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) requires all motorcycle helmets to be DOT-approved.

This means helmets must meet impact resistance, penetration resistance, and retention system strength standards.

The NYSDOT will not allow any rider to ride without a DOT-approved helmet. Now the question arises, how to check a DOT-approved helmet?

Well, the easiest way to do so is to check for the DOT Approved sticker on the back of the helmet. It is easy to identify. If you cannot find one, you should also look at the box in which your helmet arrived.

If there is no approval, then this means that it is illegal to use that helmet in the state of New York. You can get into serious trouble with the authorities if caught wearing one.

Penalties/Legal Consequences

So, you’re in New York and don’t want to wear a helmet. Well, I have some bad news for you: it’s not just about your brain—it’s about your wallet too!

In New York, there can be serious consequences if you aren’t wearing a helmet and get pulled over by the police. And I am not talking about just paying a fine.

You could end up with an expensive ticket, which can be a maximum of $100 or even 30 days in jail. Sometimes, both of these can be awarded as well!

So, always wear a helmet when riding your motorcycle in New York City. It’s not only smart—it’s the law!

A Decrease In Helmets Usage And Facts About Accidents In New York

The State of New York saw a decrease in helmet usage from 77% in 2019 to 70% in 2020.

There was also a 50% increase in fatal crashes compared to 2019, with 27 riders losing their lives, in 2020 alone, due to them not wearing helmets.

While this may seem like a small number compared to the total number of riders in New York State (750,000), it’s still a significant increase from the previous year.

This is concerning because it means more people are injured due to not wearing helmets. The decrease in helmet usage may mainly be due to the law not being enforced properly.

This lead people to believe they can roam around the streets of New York without the authorities charging them.

This is a serious issue that you should also keep in mind. So, keep your helmet on at all times, as it will save you in case of an unfortunate event.

Get In Touch With Experienced Motorcycle Attorneys In New York

Getting a competent attorney in the state of New York is not easy. This section will be taking a look at the top motorcycle injury firms in the state, so you don’t have to waste time on research or money.

1. Morgan & Morgan

If you have been in a motorcycle accident, you may wonder what your next steps should be. You know you need help from a qualified attorney, but where do you start?

The answer is simple: with Morgan & Morgan. This firm is the highest-rated one I have ever seen and has more than 1400 five-star ratings on Google.

They have offices nationwide, which means they are not a one-branch firm. Not only that, but they also offer free case evaluations.

Moreover, they will only charge you a fee if or when you win, not before. That, alone, should be enough to get you to trust them because you are putting in little to no risk with them.

Phone Number: 877 359 7502

2. The Law Office of Richard M. Kenny

The Law Office of Richard M. Kenny is a popular personal injury firm in New York. It has a collective experience of more than a hundred years.

Their firm’s founder, Richard M. Kenny, has been practicing law since 1990 and has recovered more than $350 million for clients.

Moreover, the Law Office of Richard M. Kenny offers free case evaluations. This means that you can visit them today and will not have to worry about spending a dime just to see if this is the firm you want to work with or not.

The firm has a high win rate, and you will also be a part of their success stories. Believe me; you will want to.

Phone Number: (866) 886-0892

3. Raphaelson & Levine Law Firm, P.C.

The Raphaelson & Levine Law Firm, P.C. is one of the best motorcycle injury firms in New York. They have decades of trial experience and have won millions of dollars on behalf of their clients.

They are an excellent personal injury firm that can help you get the compensation you deserve after an accident. With hundreds of satisfied clients, they can deal with insurance companies to ensure you get what you deserve.

Furthermore, they will only charge you fees after you win, so there is no risk involved. So, what are you waiting for? You can contact them today and get your case evaluated for free.

Phone Number: (212) 268-3222

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Is It Ok To Wear An Open Face Helmet In New York?

The short answer is yes! Any helmet is allowed as long as it is DOT approved. If you can find an open-face helmet that is also DOT approved, you should not have any issues with the authorities over it. No laws require you to wear a full-face helmet in the state of New York.

Q2. How Much Is The Fine For Not Wearing A Motorcycle Helmet In New York?

If you’re not wearing a motorcycle helmet in New York, the worst-case scenario is that you might pay a fine of up to $100 and spend up to 30 days in prison.

Normally, one of these is chosen by the authorities. Regardless, you should spend the money on buying a helmet as it is safer.

Q3. When Did Motorcycle Helmet Become Law In New York?

In 1967, the helmet law was passed in New York. It was aimed at reducing motorcycle fatalities and injuries.

Before then, helmets were not required, and it was the people’s choice. But the state certainly took the correct step, so all people would wear a helmet, riders and passengers alike.

Q4. Should Passengers Wear A Helmet In New York?

Yes, passengers should wear a helmet in New York. Regardless of age, they should wear DOT approved helmets because riders and passengers are equally prone to injury.

Q5. Are Moped Drivers Required To Wear A Helmet In New York?

The same motorcycle helmet law applies to mopeds. All people operating a moped in New York must wear a DOT-approved helmet. This includes people of all ages.

You may also be interested in my article: How To Get A Motorcycle License In New York


I hope you got all the information you were looking for. In New York, all motorcycle riders must wear a helmet at all times.

The law states that anyone operating or riding a motorcycle must wear a helmet that meets federal standards and is fastened securely so it does not move.

In addition to helmets, eye protection is also mandatory for all riders. Although the answer to your question of do you have to wear a motorcycle helmet in New York is simple.

This article made sure to cover every angle of it, so you can always be informed about the state’s laws regarding it.

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