According to Indiana Code 9-19-10, you can get a ticket if a passenger under the age of 16 is riding in the vehicle without a seatbelt. If the passenger is an adult, they may receive a ticket for not wearing a seatbelt. All adult passengers are responsible for wearing their seatbelts regardless of where they are sitting in the vehicle.
You will not be penalized for a violation committed by an adult. However, you may be penalized for anyone under the age of 16 who is not wearing a seatbelt. The penalty depends on the nature of the violation, the number of previous violations, or if there were any injuries in an accident.
Suing the Driver if You Were Injured as a Passenger
If you were a passenger and you were injured due to the driver’s negligence or reckless actions, you may still file a lawsuit against the driver even if you were not wearing a seatbelt. Likewise, you may also file a claim against a third-party driver or another at-fault party if you were injured in an accident even if you were not wearing a seatbelt.
You may be entitled to the same damages that you would have been entitled to if you were wearing your seatbelt. These damages can include pain and suffering, which is compensation for your physical and emotional distress, and others:
- ER visit and hospital bills
- Lost pay due to being out of work
- Permanent disability/dismemberment
- Loss of consortium
- Long-term care or rehabilitation
However, the insurance company may attempt to deduct a portion of your damages if you were not wearing a seatbelt in the backseat. For this reason, you may want to hire an auto accident lawyer to defend your rights and get you a fair settlement.
An Attorney Can Help Your Case Even if You Were Not Wearing a Seatbelt
Regardless of whether you were wearing your seatbelt, you may still be entitled to a settlement if your attorney can establish that the accident was the other party’s fault. Your attorney will investigate your accident and look for evidence to establish your claim. In addition, your lawyer will also estimate the actual value of your claim based on your damages.
If the insurance company offers a lower settlement because you were not wearing a seatbelt, your attorney will advocate on your behalf to reverse the insurance company’s decision. If your claim is turned down or the insurer offers a low settlement, you may have the option of taking your case to court. Your lawyer can represent you in court and plead your case before a judge or jury.
Get Help from an Auto Accident Lawyer in Indianapolis, IN
If you were injured in an auto accident, you should not be penalized for your injuries and other damages just because you were not wearing your seatbelt. Our law firm believes that those who are responsible should still pay. If you agree, then contact Sevenish Law Firm, P.C. at (317) 636-7777. Get a free case assessment with a member of our team today.