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How to Fight Seat Belt Tickets

Question:

Do you fight seatbelt tickets?  I work as a driver to deliver to residential addresses for a company in Windsor, Ontario.  My job has me always in and out of my truck. I don’t always put my seat belt on – it’s a pain and waste of time given how much I have to stop.  The fine is kind of big but I don’t want demerit points or any problems.

Response:

It sounds like you have been charged under Highway Traffic Act section 106(2):

(2) Every person who drives on a highway a motor vehicle in which a seat belt assembly is provided for the driver shall wear the complete seat belt assembly as required by subsection (5).  2006, c. 25, s. 1.  

This is a 2-demerit point offence and if you are convicted the offence will be shown on your driving history.  We frequently assist both regular drivers and commercial motor vehicle drivers with seatbelt charges.  If you are classified as a commercial motor vehicle, we may have to look at the issue of any potential CVOR points that would be incurred by a conviction.

Like regular a seatbelt ticket, we can absolutely fight the matter at court on your behalf in seeking to either eliminate or reduce the offence and penalties.  However, you may have a further defence that we can pursue given the situation that you describe.  The Highway Traffic Act provides a number of exceptions to when a driver is required to wear a seatbelt:

(6)  Subsections (2) and (3) do not apply to a person,

(a) who is driving a motor vehicle in reverse;

(b) who holds a certificate signed by a legally qualified medical practitioner certifying that the person is,

(i) for the period stated in the certificate, unable for medical reasons to wear a seat belt assembly, or

(ii) because of the person’s size, build or other physical characteristic, unable to wear a seat belt assembly; or

(c) who is actually engaged in work which requires him or her to alight from and re-enter the motor vehicle at frequent intervals and the motor vehicle does not travel at a speed exceeding 40 kilometres per hour.  2006, c. 25, s. 1.

It is the last section, HTA s.106(6)(c), that we may be able to develop and argue a further legal defence to your matter on.  I will need to speak with you in further detail and review the evidence of the Prosecutor to determine whether this exemption may apply.  However, it is certainly worth reviewing to determine if it is a valid legal argument in your specific case to have the charge withdrawn or dismissed. Fortunately seatbelt cases are simple and straightforward legal matters that require minimal legal work and cost.

If you would like to discuss your case in further detail, our staff can be reached at 1-844-647-6869 or info@otdlegal.ca. We offer a no cost, no obligation initial consultation and would be happy to assist you in protecting your interests in this matter.

Posted under Demerit Points, Seat Belts, Traffic Ticket Defence

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