Seat Belt Failure

At Greene Broillet & Wheeler, our seasoned team of professionals have over 100 years of combined legal experience handling complex legal matters.

Los Angeles Seat Belt Failure Lawsuits

We Represent Accident Victims

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), at least 329,715 lives were saved because of seat belt use between 1960 and 2012, making seat belts one of the most important safety improvements ever designed for cars and other vehicles. Although seat belt use is finally up to a record 90% across the country, however, it’s still possible for people to become seriously injured when a seat belt fails to perform as promised.

Whether it’s caused by defective design or faulty manufacturing processes, seat belt failure can easily lead to catastrophic injuries or fatalities during collisions and rollover accidents. At Greene Broillet & Wheeler, LLP, we represent clients throughout Los Angeles, Southern California, and beyond who have been seriously injured due to defective seat belt systems. You can rely on our knowledge and skill to analyze your case. If a seat belt defect caused your injury, we have the resources and experience to obtain results through negotiation or, if necessary, courtroom litigation.

For more information about our legal services, call (866) 634-4525 or contact us online and schedule a free consultation. We can travel from our El Segundo offices to a location convenient for you. 

Types of Seat Belt Defects

When a seat belt fails to work as intended, car accident victims face significantly higher risks of fatal injury. No matter if the belt unlatches during an accident or tears and rips due to collision force, design defects in the seat belt mechanism can be deadly. This is especially true during rollover accidents, when an object or body part may come into contact with the seat belt latching mechanism – and sustain serious injuries in the process.

One of the most common seat belt defects is retractor failure, which occurs when the retracting device does not lock the seat belt quickly enough to prevent injury. Additionally, sometimes seat belts pull free of their mountings or the belt itself wears out from years of use, which can be an indication of either manufacturing or design defects. Due to this complexity, it’s important to review your seat belt failure case with an experienced Los Angeles attorney.

Here are a few of the most common types of seat belt defects:

  • Refractor failure
  • Lap-only belt designs
  • Torn or ripped belt webbing
  • False latching and inertial unlatching
  • Door-mounted belts
  • Incorrect seat belt placement
  • Faulty seat belt buckles and latches
  • Defective shoulder straps

How Can I Identify the Signs of Seat Belt Failure?

Because seat belts are designed to protect drivers and passengers in the event of a crash, belt failure is most dangerous during rollover accidents and other serious collisions. When the seat belt fails in its purpose, the force of a high-speed impact may throw occupants against the walls of the vehicle or eject them from the vehicle altogether. Occupants may also make contact with each other or other loose flying objects in the car.

Although it’s crucial to discuss your case with legal counsel before taking any action, you may have a seat belt failure claim in the following circumstances:

  • Passengers claim they were belted but became unbelted during a collision
  • Multiple passengers were hurt when seat belts failed to work
  • There is evidence of damage or tearing to the seat belt
  • Belted passengers are ejected or thrown against the windshield
  • There is a history of seat belt failure in less severe circumstances

Working with investigators and auto defect experts, our lawyers at Greene Broillet & Wheeler, LLP can determine whether a seat belt defect caused or contributed to your injuries. If that is the case, we will work tirelessly on your behalf.

Please contact our law firm to discuss your case. We represent clients in Los Angeles, throughout Southern California and California in seat belt defect claims.



  • Best Law Firms by US News

    Named in U.S. News - Best Lawyers® "Best Law Firms,” Greene Broillet & Wheeler, LLP ranks as Tier 1 Personal Injury firm in Los Angeles.

  • The Inner Circle of Advocates

    Founding partners Browne Greene and Bruce A. Broillet are both members of the exclusive invite-only Inner Circle of Advocates, as two of the top 100 plaintiff trial lawyers in America.


    All of our attorneys are proud to be active members of the Los Angeles County Bar Association or LACBA.

  • Consumer Attorneys of California

    Many firm members have been honored by the Consumer Attorneys of California, including Browne Greene, Christine Spagnoli, and Bruce Broillet, recipients of the Marvin E. Lewis Award. In addition, attorneys Bruce Broillet, Scott Carr, Molly McKibben, and Tobin Lanzetta has been honored with the Consumer Attorney of the Year Award.

  • Best Lawyers

    All 15 of our attorneys have been selected to Best Lawyers® after an extensive peer review process.

  • Top 10 Wrongful Death Verdicts in California in 2019

    Our attorneys were featured in TopVerdict for having one of the Top 10 Wrongful Death Verdicts in California in 2019, with $15 million won for the plaintiff in Keck v. Bel-Air Bay Club.

  • Super Lawyers®

    Our firm has more attorneys on the Super Lawyers® and Rising Stars lists than any other law firm in Southern California, with 15 members selected.


    Several partners are active members in the Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles, with attorneys Browne Greene, Bruce Broillet, and Christine Spagnoli named “Trial Lawyer of the Year."

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