Can Alabama Make Me Do Something I Don’t Want?

Nov 12, 2021 | Allen A. Ritchie

Allen's Answers


Well, yes. The state of Alabama can make you pay taxes. It can make you drive in the lane that is going forward. It can also make you pay for the groceries you take from the store.

Now consider this, can it make you wear a seatbelt? Actually, it can’t do that. However, it can make it very difficult, give you a ticket, if you don’t.

This topic is coming up because some folks are questioning whether the government can make you get the vaccine shot. It may not surprise you, but the arguments that are made now resemble those made when seatbelts were introduced. The solution may also be the same — a compromise.

I am sure you have heard the term “click it or ticket.” Why is it not “click it or clink,” you know, like in jail door slamming? Well, the Alabama legislature will not let law enforcement officers arrest you if you do not buckle up. In fact, if you are in the backseat and not doing anything else wrong, these men and women cannot even ticket you. It is all part of the compromise that put seatbelt use into the mainstream.

Here is another oddity. In Alabama, insurance companies cannot use your lack of buckling up as proof of your negligence. If they could, insurance companies would rarely have to pay an unbuckled person’s claim.

I deal with a lot of people involved in traffic accidents. Let me tell you without question that seatbelts save lives. Without them, deaths on the highway would likely double.

Also, take the advice of someone who has seen parents devastated by the loss of a child — buckle the kids in a quality child safety seat. Here is one other piece of advice, consider setting an example for the kids by always buckling up yourself — no matter what the government says.

If you suffer a personal injury like an auto/truck accident, railroad accident, or slip and fall, you can talk to us at the Law Firm of Eiland and Ritchie for free. We want to help you get back on your feet.

Join us on NBC 15 LawCall here in Mobile every Sunday night at 10:30, right after the news. We are taking a fall break and will offer 5-minute segments for the rest of the year and a live call-in segment every Monday on NBC 15 at around lunchtime.

Allen Ritchie

Alabama Personal Injury Lawyer