Can you receive a ticket from a police officer for not wearing a seatbelt while in park?

A police officer stopped me today because I was illegally parked (but that’s beside the point). He didn’t seem to be in the best of moods, and began listening off all of the things he could ticket me for. One of those things was that I wasn’t wearing a seatbelt behind the wheel of a motor vehicle. Keep in mind, my car is in park, and I’m about to get out of the car. Was he just being an asshole and trying to threaten me or can you actually receive a ticket for not wearing a seatbelt while in park (since you are technically not operating a vehicle), specifically in Tennessee? 

Thanks

2 Answers

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  • 1 month ago

    I think that if you are sitting behind the wheel, and the car is running, and you're on a public street, then you are operating a motor vehicle. You could put the car in park while you were stopped at a traffic light, couldn't you, and would you then say you weren't operating it? You didn't tell us if the car was running or not. If you were illegally parked and the car was running, it probably looked as if you were planning to start driving.

  • 1 month ago

    Likely yes unless you are getting in or out of the car. But I image it could easily be challenged during a hearing. 

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