Can I Claim Compensation For Seat Belt Injuries Symptoms?

By Lewis Hendrix. Last Updated 21st March 2023. In this guide, we’ll talk you through when and how you can make a personal injury claim if injured by a seatbelt. It covers symptoms of seat belt injuries and claims for specific injuries such as a seat belt burn or seat belt bruises.

Man putting on a seatbelt too tight resulting in a seatbelt injury

While it is the law to wear a seatbelt while driving on UK roads, and they can prevent serious injuries from occurring, you can also potentially suffer an injury in a car crash because of the fact you were wearing one. If you’re injured by a seat belt because of somebody else’s negligence, then you could use a No Win No Fee solicitor to seek compensation for your injuries. In this guide, we’re going to look at what injuries seat belts can cause, when you might be entitled to make a claim for them and how much compensation you could be entitled to.

Make Your Seat Belt Injury Claim With Us

For more help, you can contact Accident Claims UK on the phone or online and speak to our team of advisors. They are happy to provide free legal advice about making a claim. They can also provide you with a free, no-obligation assessment of your potential claim. If you’re claim is strong enough, they could also introduce you to one of our solicitors to handle your claim on a No Win No Fee basis. To get in touch, you can call us on 0800 073 8801. Or to reach us online, you can use our online form or our 24/7 live chat service.

If you’d prefer to find out more about claiming before contacting us, please continue reading our guide on how to make an injured by a seatbelt claim.

Select A Section

  1. Car Accident Seat Belt Injuries
  2. UK Seat Belt Safety Laws
  3. What Injuries Could Be Caused By Seat Belts?
  4. Whiplash Injuries
  5. Steps To Take If Injured In A Road Traffic Accident
  6. Car Accident Compensation
  7. Damages You Could Claim If Injured By A Seat Belt
  8. No Win No Fee Claims If Injured By A Seat Belt
  9. Contact Our Road Traffic Accident Specialists Today
  10. Essential Resources Relating To Seat Belt Injuries Symptoms

Car Accident Seat Belt Injuries

Have you suffered chest pain after a car accident? Seat belt injuries could, in some cases, have caused this. There are a variety of other seat belt injuries a person could sustain in a car accident. 

Road Traffic Accident Claims – Who Is Eligible?

When it comes to who is eligible to claim for a road accident that has injured them, there are certain criteria that must be met as part of the road traffic accident claims process. This includes:

  • A road user must have owed you a duty of care
  • They must have breached this duty of care
  • You must have sustained harm as a result of the breach. This is known as negligence.

The harm you could sustain can include physical injuries such as bruises from a seatbelt or psychological harm such as post-traumatic stress disorder or travel anxiety.

The type of injuries you sustain could influence the payout you receive. To learn more about whether you could claim and the compensation you could be awarded, get in touch on the number above.

UK Seat Belt Safety Laws

The law on wearing seat belts is quite clear: if there’s a seat belt fitted to the vehicle you’re in, you must wear it. Also, if you have passengers who are under 14-years old, it is your responsibility to make sure they wear a seat belt while you’re driving.

Children who are under 12-years old or less than 135cm tall must be secured in the correct car seat for their height. If a child is in the wrong car seat or not wearing a seatbelt, the car driver can be fined up to £500.

There are some exceptions to these rules, which we’ll cover shortly over the course of our guide on how to make an injured by a seatbelt claim.

What Injuries Could Be Caused By Seat Belts?

There is a multitude of different injuries that can be sustained during a road traffic accident. Here are some of the more common injuries and symptoms caused when a seat belt is worn:

  • Breathing difficulties – following a collision, if you’ve suffered organ damage, seat belt injuries to the chest muscles or a broken rib, you may feel breathless or struggle breathing.
  • Bruising – This is common when a seat belt tightens and holds the body back during a collision. These types of injuries are not usually long-lasting and can start to get better in a matter of days.
  • Abdominal pain – When the lap part of a seat belt is pulled tightly across the kidney area, it can lead to abdominal pain. This could cause damage to the kidneys and could also lead to intestinal injury or internal bleeding. Left untreated, these types of injuries could cause prolonged suffering and present a risk to life.
  • Bleeding – While you’re unlikely to notice any bleeding on the outside of the body caused by a seat belt, it is possible for internal bleeding to be caused during a car crash. As there are usually no immediate symptoms of internal bleeding, it is essential that you are medically assessed by a GP or at a hospital. Signs that you are suffering an internal bleed include blood in the stools or your urine.

While we haven’t listed every possible injury here, we certainly can help you claim for any form of suffering caused by a road traffic accident. That would be the case if the accident was caused by another driver’s negligence. To learn more about how to make an injured by a seatbelt claim, please call an advisor for free advice or continue reading.

Whiplash Injuries

Whiplash is an injury caused when the head is whipped forwards and then backwards quickly due to a collision. Surprisingly it can happen in car crashes that occur at low speeds because the body is restrained by a seatbelt, whereas the head is not.

Whiplash injuries affect the neck, back, shoulders and upper arms. The main symptoms to look out for are:

  • Difficulty moving the head and neck stiffness.
  • Pain in the neck and surrounding area.
  • Any strength of headache.
  • Muscles spasms, with or without pain, in the shoulders and arms.

While the NHS suggest that pain killers can be used to manage the symptoms of whiplash, we’d highly recommend that you visit your GP to have your injuries assessed. As mentioned earlier, this will mean medical records are available to prove how severe your injuries were.

The Whiplash Claims Reforms

When it comes to claiming for whiplash injuries, whether they have also combined with seat belt injuries symptoms, or not, you might be interested to learn that there is a reform that has come into place that could affect a whiplash injury claim. Now, if an injury is valued below £5000, you would have to make a claim through a government portal, instead of in the traditional manner. We could still help you with such claims.

However, we should mention that legal costs are not recoverable for the at fault party, and you would be compensated for your injuries against a tariff that has been put in place. There is also a ban on being able to claim without medical evidence. However, not all whiplash claims are valued under this ceiling, so please do call us for advice and support regardless of how much you believe your claim to be worth.

Please continue reading for more information on how to make an injured by a seatbelt claim.

Steps To Take If Injured In A Road Traffic Accident

After experiencing an injury, such as a seat belt burn or seat belt bruises, in a road traffic accident, there are several steps you could take to support your potential claim. For example:

  1. Seek medical attention. This can ensure you receive the treatment you need and can produce medical records which you can use to support your claim.
  2. Gather evidence. Should you suffer injuries in a road traffic accident it can be important to provide evidence that another road user breached the duty of care they owed. Some evidence you could gather includes photographs of the scene and your injuries, witness contact details, a police report and CCTV footage. 
  3. Get legal advice. You could seek free legal advice from our team of advisors. They can advise on your eligibility to put forward a claim. 

For more information on claiming for a seat belt burn or other seat belt injuries, please get in touch on the number above.

Evidence That Can Support Seat Belt Injury Claims

When claiming for a seat belt injury, you’ll need to obtain evidence that can support your claim. If you have no proof that you have been injured as a result of the negligence of another road user, you likely won’t be awarded personal injury compensation.

Although you may be concerned about the stress of collecting evidence, an accident claims solicitor could help you with the process. Evidence that they could help you gather includes:

  • A witness statement – if you ask for the contact details of any witnesses to your road traffic accident, your solicitor can get in touch for a statement that corroborates your version of events.
  • Medical evidence – whilst you can obtain your medical records, your solicitor can also arrange for you to be assessed by an independent medical expert. Their diagnosis can prove the extent of any injuries you have suffered.
  • Video evidence – accidents on the road may be captured by CCTV footage or dash cam footage. If you suspect your accident was caught on camera, inform your solicitor and they can obtain the footage on your behalf.
  • Photographic evidence – Your solicitor can photograph any injuries you have sustained, such as bruising from a seat belt.

Whether you have suffered seat belt bruising, or psychological harm, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), our expert car accident solicitors can help you collect the evidence you need to make a successful claim. Get in touch at any time for more information.

Car Accident Compensation

If you’ve been injured by a seatbelt, and someone else could be held liable for your injuries, you might wonder how much car accident compensation you could receive. If your claim is successful, you could receive compensation for the pain and suffering caused by your injury. These damages are known as general damages. Plus, you could receive compensation for the financial impact of your injuries, which are referred to as special damages.

General Damages – Car Accident Compensation Examples

You might choose to use a compensation calculator for car accidents to get a rough idea of the compensation you could receive under general damages. However, we have chosen to provide you with car accident compensation examples in a table format.

We have used figures from a publication called the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) to populate the table. This publication sets out guideline payouts for a range of injuries. Solicitors can use these to help them value the general damages portion of your claim. 

However, you should only use them as a guide because your settlement could vary depending on the specific circumstances of your case.


Injury Severity Compensation Range Additional Notes
Ribs Minor Up to £3,950 Soft tissue damage or fractured ribs causing pain and disability for a number of weeks.
Neck Minor Up to £7,890 An injury such as whiplash which causes soft tissue type damage. Typically full recover will occur within 1 and 2 years. Please note: whiplash injuries valued under £5,000 will be impacted by the whiplash reform and these figures would not apply.
Neck Moderate £7,890 to £38,490 This range covers dislocations and fractures of the neck. These could lead to the requirement of spinal fusion.
Neck Severe £45,470 to £148,330 This range covers the most severe neck injuries including those which result in complete paraplegia.
Shoulder Minor Up to £7,890 This range covers sofft tissue damages. In this range recovery usually occurs between 1 and 2 years.
Shoulder Serious/Severe £12,770 to £48,030 This range covers the more severe shoulder injuries including those linked to neck injuries where damage to the brachial plexus causes permanent intrusive symptoms or a signifcant disability.
Back Minor Up to £12,510 Back injuries where full recovery occurs, without any surgery requirement, within 2 to 5 years.
Back Severe £38,780 to £160,980 This range covers severe spinal injuries where incomplete paralysis results in impaired bowel, bladder and sexual function.
Arm/elbow Moderate up to £12,590 This range covers most elbow fractures, lacerations and simple arm fractures.


Will My Claim Be Affected By The Whiplash Reforms?

If you sustain whiplash or soft tissue injuries in a car accident as an adult passenger or driver, and they are worth £5,000 or less, you will need to make your claim via the Official Injury Claims portal. As such, your injuries can be valued in line with the tariff set out in the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021

However, even if you do not need to claim via this portal, your whiplash injuries could still be valued in accordance with the tariff. This is because the tariff applies to all occupants inside a vehicle.

If you would like a personalised estimation of your compensation and free legal advice on whether you could make a car accident claim, please call our team.

Damages You Could Claim If Injured By A Seat Belt

When a personal injury solicitor sits down to assess how much compensation a client is entitled to, they can use a number of different elements to make a claim. The elements they’ll use will depend entirely on how your injuries affected you. If you’re wondering how to make an injured by a seatbelt claim, here are some of the elements that could make up a final settlement:

General Damages

This is how your pain, suffering and loss of amenity is compensated. Examples of general damages were included in the previous section.

Medical Expenses

It can be surprising how quickly the cost of prescriptions and other medication can build up during recovery. Therefore, these costs could be included in your claim.

Travel Costs

When you’re injured by a seat belt, you might not be able to drive while you’re recovering. If that’s the case, you could claim for any alternative travel arrangements. Also, it could be possible to include fuel and parking costs linked to medical appointments.

Care Costs

In cases where a carer is needed to support your recovery, you could claim any associated costs back.

Damaged Property

If an item of personal property is damaged in your accident, you could ask for the cost of replacing it. You could also ask for the repair cost if that’s easier.

Lost Income

When you’re unable to work while you’re recovering, you could claim compensation for any loss of earnings. If you have a longer-term injury that affects your ability to work the same as before the accident, you could claim for future lost income.

With the financial parts of your claim, we recommend that you keep hold of receipts, payslips and bank statements to help prove the costs you’ve incurred as a result of your injuries, including proof of any loss of earnings.

No Win No Fee Claims If Injured By A Seat Belt

We know that the thought of making a seat belt injury claim can seem quite daunting. Not only are there legal implications, but there are also financial worries too. That’s why our solicitors offer a no win no fee service for any claim they take on.

Person looking at a newspaper after hurting their neck in a seatbelt accident

When you use a no win no fee service, you and your solicitor will sign a conditional fee agreement or CFA. The importance of this document is that it protects you and reduces your financial risk. That’s because it clearly explains that you don’t have to pay any solicitor’s fees unless you receive compensation. The CFA also explains what success fee you have to pay when compensation is awarded.

Success fees are what are used to cover the solicitor’s fees. They are deducted from your compensation before it’s paid to you. By law, the success fee is not allowed to exceed 25% of your compensation.

Contact Our Road Traffic Accident Specialists Today

If you’ve been injured by a seat belt and are ready to begin your claim with us, here are the ways in which you can contact us:

  • Telephone: Call our advisors for free advice on 0800 073 8801.
  • Email: Send details of your accident to
  • Live Chat: Connect with an advisor from any page on this website with our live chat facility.
  • Online: Ask us to call you back by completing our online claims form.

Whichever way you get in touch, we’ll provide you with free advice about making a personal injury claim. We’ll also assess your claim for free and, if the case is strong enough, we could introduce you to a no win no fee personal injury lawyer to handle your case.

Essential Resources Relating To Seat Belt Injuries Symptoms

You’ve come to the end of this guide about what to do if you’re injured by a seat belt. However, we’ve provided some more guides and useful resources below.

Seat Belt Law – Details from the government regarding when you need to wear a seatbelt.

The Highway Code – All of the rules of the road covering the United Kingdom.

Brake Charity – A road safety charity that campaigns for safety measures and supports those affected by a road traffic accident.

Car Accident Claims – This guide looks at the different types of injuries caused during a car crash, not just a seat belt injury.

Whiplash Claims – A guide covering what causes whiplash and when you could claim compensation for it.

Accident At Work Claims – This guide could help you claim if you’re seeking seat belt injury compensation following an accident in a work vehicle.

Medical Resources Related To Seat Belt Injuries Symptoms

Whiplash Injuries – Information from the NHS regarding the causes, diagnosis and treatment for whiplash injuries.

What Are Bruises – Another guide from the NHS. This one explains what bruises are, how you can reduce them and when to see your GP.

Other Guides That May Help

Thank you for reading our guide on how to make an injured by a seatbelt claim. We have now covered seat belt injuries symptoms, and provided guidance on how to make a seat belt injury claim.