Seat belt defense: Can one claim recovery for the damages?

The ‘seat belt defense’ is a personal injury lawsuit defense adopted in a few states wherein there is a reduction in the amount for recovery damages during an accident. This is because one did not strap on the seat belt! While there are debates as to why this system is not fair, others argue that it is a rule to put on seat belts. So violating the law would mean compensating for it.

Who are the victims of the seat belt defense?

The seat belt defense applies to not only the drivers who seek to claim insurance, but the co-passengers as well. While this system is not in place in the US, one can contact a personal injury attorney to check whether this defense system falls within their jurisdiction.

How does the defense work?

Applying the seat belt defense into action is all in the hands of the jurisdiction’s laws of legal responsibility. While a personal injury lawyer determines the case and points out the defaulter, the defense system analyses the case from the very core. For example, if an accident occurs due to a rear-end collision, and the victim was not wearing a seat belt, there would be a reduction in the amount of damage claim.

What’s the substitute for seat belt defense?

As stated above, the rule of seat belt defense does not apply to all US states, but most states have made it mandatory to put on seat belts. If one were to meet with an accident in these states, the fact that one was not wearing a seat belt does not play a significant role. In fact, the assessment of the accident is made on principles and theories to come to a negotiation. In places where the seat belt defense is in place, the reduction rate for the insurance claim amount is 15 percent simply because the defense system is seen to be inconsiderate.