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Sunak gets fined for not wearing a seatbelt, but what does the law say?

By Tom Gibson | January 24, 2023


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There are numerous reasons why you don’t need to wear a seatbelt. How many of these did you know?

Sunak gets fined for not wearing a seatbelt, but what does the law say?

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak was issued a fine by Lancashire Police after being filmed not wearing a seatbelt in a moving vehicle.

No 10 said Mr Sunak "fully accepts this was a mistake and has apologised", adding that he would pay the fine.

Passengers caught failing to wear a seat belt when one is available can be fined £100 and this can increase to £500 if the case goes to court.

Quite how none of his advisers or PR team failed to spot that he wasn’t wearing a seatbelt is beyond us, but what does the law say and are you ever exempt from wearing one.

Well, yes you are. The law says…

When you don't need to wear a seat belt

You don’t need to wear a seat belt if you’re:

- a driver who is reversing, or supervising a learner driver who is reversing

- in a vehicle being used for police, fire and rescue services

- a passenger in a trade vehicle and you’re investigating a fault

- driving a goods vehicle on deliveries that is travelling no more than 50 metres between stops

- a licensed taxi driver who is ‘plying for hire’ or carrying passengers

Pregnancy and disability exemptions

If you fall into one of the above categories you are not exempt from wearing a seatbelt unless you have a specific exemption from a doctor on medical grounds. You can also get an exemption for a medical condition. For any of the above, you can get a ‘Certificate of Exemption from Compulsory Seat Belt Wearing’ from your doctor and you have to keep this in your vehicle to show to the police if you’re stopped. You’ll also need to tell your car insurer.

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