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Legal guide to UK motoring, sections for law enforcement, Driver licensing, learner and new drivers, buying and selling, speeding fines, owning a vehicle, wheel clamping, traffic information.

Owning a Vehicle

Driving and the environmentRelease of information from DVLA recordsAdaptions for disabled driversHow to request information from DVLA recordsWearing a seat belt and exemptions

Wearing a seat belt and exemptions

Every driver should know the law about the wearing of a seatbelt in the front and back seats of a vehicle and who should ensure that the driver, child or adult passenger wears a seat belt. There are also exemptions from wearing a seat belt while driving.

The law

The law requires that as a driver it is your responsibility to ensure:

The law requires that an adult passenger aged fourteen and upwards is responsible for wearing a seat belt in the front and rear seats if one is available.

Vehicles affected

Front seats of all vehicles, including cars, vans, coaches, buses and goods vehicles where seat belts are fitted. Rear seats of cars and small buses where seat belts are fitted. Whilst the law does not presently require seat belts to be worn in the rear seats of larger minibuses or coaches, they should be used if fitted.

Exemptions from wearing a seat belt

Very few drivers or passengers should not wear a seat belt. However, one reason for not doing so may be on medical grounds. If you think you should not wear a seat belt on medical grounds, please consult your doctor. He or she will decide and, if warranted will issue you a formal Certificate of Exemption from Compulsory Seat Belt Wearing. This must be produced if the police ask you for it.

For more information please contact:

Helpful contacts Road Safety Division
Address Department for Transport Zone 2/11, Great Minster House76 Marsham StreetLondonSW1P 4DR
Phone number 020 7944 2046
Fax 020 7944 2029
Email address

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