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Seatbelt laws

Wearing your seatbelt is one of the best ways to protect yourself from getting injured or even killed in a crash. It’s also the law.

Every seat used in your vehicle must have a seatbelt.

If you own or drive older vehicles (such as large buses) that aren’t made with seatbelts, you don’t need to retro-fit them. But you may only carry as many passengers as the manufacturer provided seating positions.

Our seatbelt laws and regulations

The following table lists the number of the specific Motor Vehicle Act (MVA) and what it covers.

Number Act
MVA 220 (1) A seatbelt assembly includes a pelvic restraint, an upper torso restraint or both.
MVA 220 (2) A person must not sell, offer for sale or operate a motor vehicle manufactured or assembled after December 1, 1963, other than a motorcycle, unless it is equipped with at least two seatbelt assemblies in the front seat.
MVA 220 (3) A person must not operate a motor vehicle that has had the seatbelts removed, rendered partly or wholly inoperative, or modified to reduce its effectiveness.
MVA 220 (4) A seatbelt assembly must be worn when a motor vehicle is being operated.
MVA 220 (6) Drivers must ensure that passengers who have attained 6 years of age but are under 16 years of age, are properly restrained.

How much you’ll pay

There’s a $167 fine for MVA infractions (including a 15 per cent victim surcharge). The amount can be reduced by $25 if the ticket is paid within 30 days.

It isn’t just if you’re caught without a seatbelt. The table below lists MVA infractions for which you can receive a fine.

If . . . then . . .
you’re caught
  • operating a vehicle without seatbelts;
  • operating a vehicle with inoperative seatbelts;
  • failing to remain seated;
  • failing to be the only occupant of the seat;
  • operating a vehicle while person is riding on vehicle;
  • operating a vehicle while more than one person in seat;
  • operating vehicle while person is not seated;
  • operating vehicle with too many seats;
  • failing to wear a seatbelt (fine increased);
  • permitting passenger without a seatbelt (fine increased).
you’ll also be ticketed
you’re an employer or owner of vehicles, you could get a $598 ticket (including victim surcharge) for:
  • requiring or allowing a vehicle to be operated with too many people in the vehicle;
  • requiring or allowing a vehicle to be operated with inoperative seatbelts;
  • requiring or allowing a vehicle to be operated with too many seats.
you’re operating a vehicle with too many people in the vehicle that will result in a $311 ticket (including victim surcharge).

You should always refer to the Motor Vehicle Act ("MVA") and the Motor Vehicle Act Regulation ("MVR") for a full statement of the law. In the event of a conflict between the foregoing summary and the MVA or the MVR, the MVA and the MVR prevail.