Seat-Belt Laws in South Carolina

No matter who you are or how old you are, in South Carolina you must wear a seat-belt.
Written by Michelle Ballestrasse
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
South Carolina keeps it simple when it comes to seat-belts—if you’re in the car, you have to wear one. There are a few exceptions, but for the most part, there’s no excuse for not buckling up before the car starts moving.
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Read on to learn more about seat-belt laws, as well as finding
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What are the seat-belt laws in South Carolina?

In South Carolina, the driver and passengers, regardless of their age or riding position, are required to wear a seat-belt. Make sure that all child passengers are in compliance with South Carolina car seat laws.
Passengers 18 years of age or older are responsible for themselves and any penalties that are incurred from breaking seat-belt laws.
Drivers are responsible for all passengers under the age of 17, with the exception of passengers who have a driver’s license, special restricted license, or a beginner’s permit.
There is an exemption made for cars in which the number of passengers exceeds the number of available seat-belts.
Key Takeaway The driver and all passengers in a car need to buckle up in South Carolina.

What happens if you break the seat-belt laws in South Carolina?

The fine for violating South Carolina seat-belt laws is $25, and no more than $50 for individual violations.
South Carolina’s seat-belt laws are considered primary offenses, which means an officer can pull you over and ticket you if they notice a seat-belt violation.

Could it impact my driving record?

Seat-belt law infractions don’t constitute a moving violation, so their impact on your driving record is fairly minimal, especially because points are not assessed against your license.
However, having too many citations can have consequences.

Could it impact my insurance?

Possibly. Citations on your driving record are a signal to your insurance carrier that you might be a risky driver.
One citation may not have too much of an impact, but multiple citations can add up over time. Your carrier or a prospective carrier may consider you high risk and raise your premium costs as a result. Some carriers might even refuse to insure you.
Key Takeaway Breaking South Carolina’s seat-belt laws might raise your insurance rates if you receive multiple citations.
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