When you get on the road without using a seat belt, and you get pulled over by a highway patrol officer, you should well expect a seat belt ticket, except if you can get into the good graces of the officer and can convince him or her why you shouldn’t be ticketed.
If and when you are eventually fined or you are given a seat belt ticket, you have several choices to make, whether you want to pay the fine, or contest the ticket using various methods.
Either way, if you get a ticket for a seat belt violation, does a seatbelt ticket go on your record?
A seatbelt ticket will go on your driving record when you pay the fine that accompanies the ticket. This means that if you pay the ticket, you would invariably admit to being guilty of the offense fined and this will certainly go on your record.
What is a Seat Belt Ticket?
When you violate the seat belt rule that says that you must always have your seat belt on while driving, you breach the traffic rules of the state, and if you are caught by an officer, and you get pulled over, you will be fined.
This fine usually comes in form of a ticket, called a seat belt ticket. It symbolizes that you have just committed a crime, however minute, and you have to pay the fine spelled out on the ticket.
You can be given a seat belt ticket for not wearing your seat belt at all, not wearing it the right way, not making sure that passengers, most especially children are not wearing a seat belt, or properly wearing a seat belt.
Also, although many times, you are let off, if you are driving with a faulty seat belt, and have been warned earlier, you can get a seat belt ticket.
A seat belt ticket means that you have a fine to pay for breaking traffic rules. If you do not want to pay the fine, then you can explore ways to contest the ticket.
Why Do People Get Seat Belt Tickets?
People get seat belt tickets for breaking traffic rules that have to do with seat belts, which are mostly not wearing one.
In case you are wondering, you cannot get a seat belt ticket because you are overspeeding. Instead, you get a speeding ticket, which is more grievous than the former.
Also, you cannot get a seat belt ticket for any other traffic offenses that have nothing to do with a seat belt. There are more offenses people commit that have to do with seat belts than not wearing them themselves.
If you are driving on the highway, and you are not wearing a seat belt for an intangible reason, you are going to get ticketed. This is one of the reasons why people get seat belt tickets.
Another reason why people get seat belt tickets is when they do not monitor the kids under the age of sixteen, who are passengers in their vehicle to put on their seat belts.
You can also get a seat belt ticket if you are not wearing your seat belt properly, or if you have a faulty seat belt that isn’t latching correctly.
So, let’s go over it again. The reasons why people get seat belt tickets are;
- They are not putting on a seat belt.
- The kids in their vehicle aren’t putting on a seat belt.
- They are not wearing their seat belt properly.
- Their seat belt is faulty.
Does a Seatbelt Ticket Go On Your Record?
A seat belt ticket can only go on your record if you pay the ticket. Paying the ticket is an admission of guilt, that you have done what the ticket says you have done, and that you deserve the fine that you have been given.
If you do not want the seat belt ticket to go on your record, whatever you do, do not pay for the ticket! Paying the ticket is synonymous with singing “sign, sealed, and delivered” for the ticket, against your record.
When you get a seat belt ticket, contest it. Visit the District Attorney’s office if you are a graduate of a driving school, and give a reasonable reason why you weren’t on your seat belt when you were pulled over.
You could also ignore the ticket until it goes away, or you attend the trial hoping that the officer will be absent, or build a very strong argument that will convince the Judge to dismiss the ticket.
Long story short, if you do not want a seat belt ticket to go on your record, do not pay the fine.
How To Avoid Getting A Seat Belt Ticket
There are several things to do to avoid getting a seat belt ticket, they are:
1. Always Wear Your Seat Belt
Obviously, not wearing your seatbelt is the major reason why you get pulled over and get a ticket in the first place. So, if you do not want a seat belt ticket, whenever you are driving, always have your seat belt on.
2. Ensure Passengers in Your Vehicle Wear their Seat Belts
If you’ve got minors in your car, or kids under the age of sixteen, you must do your due diligence and ensure that they have their seat belts on before getting on the road.
If you have a child in the car who isn’t wearing a seat belt, and you are pulled over, you will get hit with worse fines than you would have if it was just you.
3. Keep Your Seat Belt on When You are Pulled Over
A lot of people have gotten seat belt tickets just because they undid their seat belt before the officer walked up to them after getting pulled over.
Many say that they unconsciously do that once they park their car, others say they do that to enable them to get the credentials they know the officer will ask for, but it is a bad idea.
If the officer walks up to you and doesn’t see you wearing a seat belt, he is within his rights to assume that you weren’t using your seat belt in the first place, and then he might cut you a ticket.
4. Make Sure Your Seat Belts are in Sound Condition
If you’ve got a faulty seat belt, you might be putting yourself at risk of getting a ticket, as not all the officers would understand that your seat belt buckle is bad.
It is even worse when you have been pulled over and warned. If your seat belt is faulty, repair it as soon as possible.
5. Wear Your Seat Belts Properly
Wearing a seat belt is not enough. You must wear it properly for it to count. If you aren’t wearing your seat belt properly, it defeats the whole purpose of the seat belt in the first place.
Many drivers are fond of simply seating on the tongue of the seat belt, instead of buckling it properly. If you are caught, you are going to get a seat belt ticket.
Do all you can to ensure you do not get pulled over for a seat belt violation. Abide by all the rules about seat belts. Wear your seat belt properly, for your sake, and the sake of other road users.
If, for any reason, you get a seat belt ticket, if you don’t want it to go on your record, do all you can so you don’t pay the fine on the ticket. Paying the fine is admitting guilt and getting yourself convicted. That goes on your record.