2017 Tennessee Code
Title 55 - Motor and Other Vehicles
Chapter 9 - Equipment -- Lighting Regulations
Part 6 - Safety Belts
§ 55-9-604. Failure to wear safety belt -- Contributory negligence -- Evidence.

Universal Citation: TN Code § 55-9-604 (2017)
  • (a) The failure to wear a safety belt or receipt of a citation or warrant for arrest for failure to wear a safety belt shall not be admissible into evidence in a civil action; provided, that evidence of a failure to wear a safety belt or receipt of a citation or warrant for arrest for failure to wear a safety belt, as required by this chapter, may be admitted in a civil action as to the causal relationship between noncompliance and the injuries alleged, if the following conditions have been satisfied:
    • (1) The plaintiff has filed a products liability claim;
    • (2) The defendant alleging noncompliance with this chapter shall raise this defense in its answer or timely amendment thereto in accordance with the rules of civil procedure; and
    • (3) Each defendant seeking to offer evidence alleging noncompliance with this chapter has the burden of proving noncompliance with this chapter, that compliance with this chapter would have reduced injuries and the extent of the reduction of the injuries.
  • (b) Upon request of any party, the trial judge shall hold a hearing out of the presence of the jury as to the admissibility of the evidence in accordance with this section and the Tennessee Rules of Evidence.
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