What the Illinois Law States Pertaining to Seat Belts

The Illinois vehicle code dictates the mandatory use of seat belts pertaining to children as well as adults.

  •  All people in the front seat of a vehicle must use a seat belt.
  •  Passengers under 16 years of age must wear seat belts even if in the rear seat.
  •  If a driver is under 18 years, all passengers in the vehicle younger than 19  years of age are required to use a seat belt irrespective of where they are sitting in the vehicle.
  • Children younger than 8 must be sitting in the correct child safety seats or booster seats.

You will learn that legally it is not a mandate that everyone uses seat belts. The fact of the matter is, anyone older than 16 does not have to use a seat belt when present in the rear passenger seats.

How Can Cops Tell If You’re Not Wearing A Seatbelt?

While a police officer will not divulge all of his or her secrets for being able to tell if drivers are wearing a seat belt or not, there is one sure way officers can tell if there is no seat belt usage:  if officers don’t see the strap above your left shoulder, then you’re not wearing your seatbelt. Yes, cops can even see though tinted windows. So, just buckle up! 

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Drive Informed by Taking a Course Offered by Ticket School

Have you recently been penalized for driving witho

Have you recently been penalized for driving without a seatbelt? Are you looking for a way to increase your knowledge of the various traffic laws that apply to New York drivers? No matter the reason, if you’re looking to take a New York defensive driving course, look no further than Ticket School.

In New York, drivers have the option to participate in the Point & Insurance Reduction Program. This program refreshes driving knowledge by teaching defensive driving techniques, safety tips, and reviewing traffic laws. By completing a driver safety course, you may be eligible for up to a four-point reduction on your New York driving record.

Another benefit of taking an online traffic school course from Ticket School is the fact that you can get a minimum of a 10% reduction on your auto insurance premiums. So, whether you have seatbelt violations on your record or just want to be a safer driver, we can help.

Learn more about Ticket School driving courses at or by calling our team at (800) 558-9887.

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Not All Seatbelt Tickets are the Same

Each state treats traffic tickets differently. In some states, a seatbelt ticket might be considered a moving violation. In this case, this is where you might need to worry about it raising your auto insurance rates. If this is not your first offense and you have other moving violations on your record, like speeding tickets or not stopping for a school bus, then it could hurt you even more.

However, a handful of states treat seatbelt tickets as non-moving violations, comparing them to the likes of parking tickets, which might have better or no outcomes on your insurance. Lastly, some states, like Minnesota, might just give you a slap on the wrist. In this more fortunate case, drivers caught without a seatbelt just have to pay a fine. It does not count as a driving violation.

If your state treats seatbelt violations seriously, then you might face other penalties for breaking this traffic law. On top of a potential increase in your insurance premium, you also run the risk of adding points on your driving record, which can hurt how much you pay in the future with other insurance companies. In very rare instances, you may also be responsible for paying court fees.

States that consider seatbelt tickets as a moving violation

On the other hand, breaking this traffic law and getting charged with a moving violation can have some impact on your driving record and, therefore, negatively impact how much you pay in car insurance. seatbelt tickets are treated as minor offenses, very much unlike a hit-and-run or driving under the influence. Not a felony, this is usually more of an infraction or misdemeanor.

In this case, failing to use a safety restraint can add points to your license or stay on your driving record, which would impact your car insurance rates, similar to a claim or collision in your history. Some states might also charge not only the driver but also the passengers a fine for not being strapped in. Here are a few states that treat seatbelt tickets a bit more severely:

Non-Moving Violations and Moving Seat Belt Violations

Beginning on January 1, 2012 it has been established that anyone who is present in a motor vehicle must use a seat belt no matter if they are in the front or the back seat. Prior to this date, it was not mandatory for individuals in the rear seat to use seat belts, but the law was reviewed in light of the possible damage rear seat passengers present to front seat individuals by becoming projectiles should an accident occur.

Not obeying this law can bring on a citation for a non-moving traffic violation. Because such violations can be resolved without necessitating a court appearance, many people choose to fork over the fine with taking into account the consequences of their actions. We can thoroughly explain the serious outcome you could possibly be confronted with now and in the future as a result of your violation.

In a case where children are not protected in their seating according to NHTSA safety regulations regarding children in a motor vehicle, the driver can be given a moving violation. A separate ticket can be issued for each individual child that is improperly restrained. There can be serious ramifications for your driving record due to moving violations, for your driving privileges, and for your insurance premiums. For example, if you are issued more than one conviction for moving violations within a year, your driver’s license can be suspended.

Out-of-State Drivers

Even those drivers who are from out-of-state can be ticketed in New York for a No Seat Belt ticket if driving in New York. This is because under what is known as The Driver License Company, states will share information with one another pertaining to non-residents. This includes traffic violation convictions. In other words, if someone from out-of-state is issued a ticket for failing to wear a seatbelt, New York will notify the state in which they reside. Then the state in which the driver resides will actually treat the violation as if it had occurred in that state, adding local laws to the offense as well. 

How Much Is a Ticket for Not Wearing a Seatbelt?

The cost of a seatbelt ticket depends on the state where it’s issued. The main factors that affect the cost are:

  1. Whether the state is a primary enforcement state
  2. Whether the state is a secondary enforcement state

What Constitutes a Secondary Enforcement State, and How Much Does a Ticket Cost There?

A secondary enforcement violation happens when a police officer pulls you over for a different violation and fines you for not wearing a seatbelt in addition to your primary offense. The secondary enforcement states and costs of the tickets there are listed in the table below:

StateMaximum Ticket Cost for the First Offense
Arizona$10
Colorado$71
Idaho$10
Massachusetts$25
Missouri
  • $50 driver
  • $10 passenger
Montana$20
Nebraska$25
Nevada$25
North Dakota$20
Ohio
  • $30 driver
  • $20 passenger
Pennsylvania$10
South Dakota$25
Vermont$25
Virginia$25
Wyoming
  • $25 driver
  • $10 passenger

Seatbelt Tickets: Not the End of the world

At the end of the day, getting a seatbelt ticket isn’t ideal, but it really won’t hurt you that much. While it can affect your car insurance rates, at most, you might see a minimal increase of three percent. That means that if you pay $200 for your monthly premium and get charged with a seatbelt violation, then your premium could go up to just $206. It’s not worth the hassle of court.

What you might need to worry about is racking up points on your driver’s license or driving history if you already have a number of claims or violations. In this case, it might be time to shop around for another policy. Insurify has you covered. In just a few minutes, we can help you find affordable rates that fit your needs and budget. A cheaper policy is just a couple of clicks away!

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