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Child Passenger Safety Requirements by State

ALABAMA
Children ages 6 until 15 are required to wear a seat belt in all seats.
Booster seats or child safety seats are required until age 6.
Children must be in forward-facing seats or convertible seats until age 5 or 40 lbs. Infant seats and convertible seats are required to be rear-facing until passenger is at least 1 year old or 20 lbs. in weight.
All child restraint laws are standard enforcement.

ALASKA
Children between age 8 and 16 who are less than 57 inches in height and under 65 lbs. shall be restrained in a child safety device or seat belt as determined by the driver.
Children over 4, taller than 57 inches, and weighing more than 65 lbs. shall be restrained in a seat belt.
Children between 4 and 8 years old, less than 57 inches in height, and weighing 20 to 65 lbs. must be secured in a booster seat or child safety seat.
Children between 1 and 5 years old and weighing 20 lbs. or more must be secured in a child restraint device.
Children less than one year of age or weighing less than 20 lbs. must be secured in a rear-facing child safety seat.
Violation of the child passenger safety law is a standard offense.

ARIZONA
Children under 16 are required to be properly restrained in all seats.
Children who are age 5 to 8 and 57 inches or less in height must use a booster seat.
Child restraints are required for children under age 5.
Violation of the child restraint law is a primary offense.

ARKANSAS
Children ages 6 until 15 or at least 60 lbs. are required to be restrained in a seat belt.
Child restraints are required for children under age 6 and under 60 lbs.
All occupants must wear a seat belt when the vehicle is being operated by a driver with an intermediate license.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

CALIFORNIA
Children under age 8 and under 57” must be properly secured in a child restraint system. All other children age 8 to 16 or over 57″ must be secured in a properly fitted seat belt. Effective January 1, 2017, children under age 2, and under 40 lbs. or under 40”, must be properly secured in a rear-facing child restraint system.
Children under age 8 must be restrained in a child passenger restraint system in the rear seat.
California law specifically requires children to be properly restrained, meaning the lap belt is low on the hips, touching the upper thighs, and the shoulder belt is crossing the center of the chest.
Children in rear-facing car seats may not ride in front if there is an active passenger air bag.
Violation of the child passenger safety law is a standard offense.

COLORADO
Children ages 8 until 16 must wear seat belts.
Children under age 8 must use a forward facing car seat or booster seat
Children under age 4 and less than 40 lbs., shall be properly restrained in a child restraint system.
Children under age 1 and under 20 lbs. shall use a rear-facing child restraint system.
Violation of the booster seat and the child restraint law are standard offenses.

CONNECTICUT
Children over 7 years of age who weigh more than 60 lbs. must be in a seat belt.
Children under age 7 and less than 60 lbs. are required to use a child restraint. Children who ride in a booster seat must use a lap and shoulder belt.
Children under age 1 and under 20 lbs. are required to be in a rear-facing child restraint.
Children riding in a vehicle without lap and shoulder belts are exempt from complying with the booster seat requirement.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

DELAWARE
No child who is 65 inches or under in height or who is under age 12 shall occupy the front passenger seat of any vehicle equipped with a passenger-side airbag that has not been deliberately rendered inoperable.
Children under age 8 and under 66 lbs. must be properly restrained in a child safety seat or booster seat that meets federal motor vehicle safety standards appropriate for the child’s weight and height.
Violations of the child restraint laws are standard offenses.
The maximum fine for the first offense for a violation of the child restraint law is $25.

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
Children ages 8 until 16 are required to be restrained in a child restraint or seat belt.
Children under age 8 are required to be restrained in a child restraint.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

FLORIDA
Children ages 6 until 18 must be restrained in a child restraint or seat belt.
Children under age 6 are required to use a child restraint.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

GEORGIA
Children ages 8 until 18 and over 4 feet 9 inches are required to be in a seat belt in all seats.
Children under age 8 and under 4 feet 9 inches are required to be in a child restraint installed and being used in accordance with the manufacturer’s directions, if available, in the rear seat.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

HAWAII
Children ages 8 until 17 are required to wear a seat belt in all seats. Children ages 4 until 8 must ride in a child safety seat or booster seat unless they are over 4 feet 9 inches or weigh more than 40 lbs.
Children under age 4 must be restrained in a child passenger restraint system.
Children over 40 lbs. may be belted without a booster seat if they are seated in the rear seat of a vehicle equipped with only a lap belt.
Violations of the child restraint laws are standard offenses.

IDAHO
Children under age 7 are required to be in a child safety restraint.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

ILLINOIS
Children under age 8 are required to be properly secured in a child restraint system.
Children over 40 lbs. may be transported in the back seat of a vehicle with only a lap belt if the back seat is not equipped with a lap and shoulder belt.
Violations of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

INDIANA
Children ages 8 until 16 are required to be in either a seat belt or a child restraint.
Children under age 8 must be properly restrained in a child restraint system according to manufacturer’s instructions.
Children over 40 lbs. may be transported in the back seat of a vehicle with only a lap belt if the back seat is not equipped with a lap and shoulder belt.
Violations of the child restraint laws are standard offenses.
Vehicles participating in a funeral procession are exempt from complying with child restraint laws.

IOWA
Children ages 6 until 18 must be restrained in either a seat belt or child restraint system.
Children under age 6 must be restrained in a child restraint.
Infants under age 1 and under 20 lbs. must be restrained in a rear-facing safety seat.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

KANSAS
Children ages 8 until 18, over 80 lbs., or over 4 feet 9 inches must properly wear a seat belt.
Children under age 4 until 8 who weigh less than 80 lbs. or are less than 4 feet 9 inches are required to be properly restrained in a child passenger safety restraint system or booster seat.
Children under age 4 are required to be in a child restraint system.
Violation of the child restraints laws are standard offenses.

KENTUCKY
Children under 7 years old and between 40 and 50 inches in height (effective June 22, 2015, under 8 years old and between 40 and 57 inches) must be secured using a booster seat
Children 40 inches or less must be properly secured in a child restraint system.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

LOUISIANA
Children ages 6 until 13 or more than 60 lbs. must be restrained in either a booster seat or a seat belt regardless of seating position. When the passenger side front airbag is active, children younger than age 6 or less than 60 lbs. must be in the rear seat, if available.
Children 4 and 5 years of age or 40-60 lbs. must be restrained in a booster seat.
Children ages 1 until 4 or 20-40 lbs. must be restrained in a forward-facing child safety seat. Children under age 1 year or less than 20 lbs. must be restrained in a rear-facing child safety seat.
Children who because of age and weight can be placed in more than one category shall be placed in the more protective restraint.
Violations of the child restraint laws are standard offenses.

MAINE
Children ages 8 until 18 and more than 4 feet 9 inches tall must be properly secured in a seat belt.
Children under age 12 and under 100 lbs. must be in the rear seat of a vehicle, if possible.

Children who weigh 40-80 lbs. and are under age 8 must be properly secured in a booster seat or child safety seat.
Children under 40 lbs. must be properly secured in a child safety seat that meets federal standards and properly secured in accordance with the manufacturer’s instruction.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

MARYLAND
Children under age 16 must be restrained in a seat belt or a child safety seat.
All children under age 8 must be secured in a child safety seat unless the child is 4 feet 9 inches or taller.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

MASSACHUSETTS
Children age 8 through age 12 shall use an appropriate child restraint or wear a safety belt that is properly adjusted and fastened.
Children under age 8 and less than 4 feet 9 inches tall shall be properly fastened and secured by a child restraint system.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

MICHIGAN
Children under age 16 must wear a seat belt or be in an approved restraint system regardless of where they sit in the vehicle.
Children under age 8 and less than 4 feet 9 inches shall be properly secured in a booster seat or child restraint system.
Children under age 4 must be properly secured in a child restraint system in the rear seat, if possible.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

MINNESOTA
Children under age 8 and under 4 feet 9 inches are required to be in a child restraint.
Violations of the child restraint laws are standard offenses.

MISSISSIPPI
Children age 4 through 6 who are less than 4 feet 9 inches tall and weigh less than 65 pounds are required to be secured in a booster seat.
Children under age 4 shall be properly restrained in a child passenger restraint device.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

MISSOURI
Children ages 8 until 16 who weigh at least 80 lbs. or are taller than 4 feet 9 inches must use a seat belt or appropriate booster seat.
Children ages 4 until 8 must ride in a booster seat or appropriate child restraint system, unless they are taller than 4 feet 9 inches or weigh more than 80 lbs.
Children less than age 4 or less than 40 lbs. must be secured in a child passenger restraint system.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

MONTANA
Children under age 6 and weighing less than 60 lbs. must be properly restrained in a child restraint device, appropriate for the height and weight of the child as indicated by manufacturer standards.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense, though a violation of the booster seat law is a secondary offense.

NEBRASKA
Children ages 6 until 18 are required to ride secured in an occupant protection system in all seating positions.
Children under age 6 are required to be in a child restraint system.
Violation of the child restraint law is a primary offense.

NEVADA
Children under age 6 and who weigh less than 60 lbs. must be secured in a child passenger restraint system.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

NEW HAMPSHIRE
Seat belts are required for all passengers under age 18.
Children under age 7 and under 57 inches must be properly fastened and secured by a child passenger restraint system.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

NEW JERSEY
Children under age 8 and weighing less than 80 lbs. must be in a child passenger restraint system or booster seat in the rear seat, if possible.
Effective September 1, children under 2 and weighing less than 30 pounds must be in a rear-facing child passenger restraint system. Children under 4 and weighing less than 40 pounds must be in either a rear- or rear-seat forward-facing child passenger restraint system. Children under 8 and under 57 inches must be in a forward-facing child passenger restraint system or rear-seat booster seat.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

NEW MEXICO
Children under 18 must be properly restrained in a child restraint device or a seat belt.
Children ages 5 and 6 or less than 60 lbs. must be restrained in a booster seat or appropriate child safety seat.
Children ages 1 through 4 or weighing less than 40 lbs. must be properly secured in a child passenger restraint device.
Children under 1 year old must be placed in a rear-facing child safety seat in the rear seat, if it is available.
Violations of the child restraint law are standard offenses.

NEW YORK
All children ages 8 to 16 must wear a seat belt in all seats.
All children ages 4 until 8, or under 4 and over 40 lbs., must be restrained in a booster seat.
Children under age 4 and under 40 lbs. must be restrained in a child restraint system.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

NORTH CAROLINA
Children ages 8 until 16 must be secured in either a child passenger restraint system or a seat belt.

Children under age 8 and less than 80 lbs. must be secured in a child passenger restraint system. If the vehicle has a passenger-side air bag and a rear seat, the child must be secured in a rear seat unless the restraint system is designed for use with air bags.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense, but secondary for rear seat occupants age 16 and older.

NORTH DAKOTA
Children ages 7 until 18 must be in an approved child restraint system or in a seat belt.
Children under age 7 and less than 4 feet 9 inches and 80 lbs. must be properly secured in a child restraint system.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

OHIO
Children ages 8 until 15 are required to be in either a seat belt or a child restraint.
Children age 4 -8 and under 4 feet 9 inches must be seated in a booster seat.
Children under age 4 and weighing less than 40 lbs. must be secured in a child restraint system when being transported in a motor vehicle.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense for children under age 4.

OKLAHOMA
Children at least age 8 or over 4 feet 9 inches in height must be properly restrained in a seat belt regardless of seating position.
Children age 4 to 8 and under 4 feet 9 inches in height must be properly restrained in a child passenger restraint system or booster seat.
Children under age 4 must be properly restrained in a child passenger restraint system. The restraint system shall be rear-facing until age 2 or the child reaches the height or weight limit of the system.
Children weighing more than 40 lbs. may be transported in the back seat of the motor vehicle while wearing only a lap belt, if the back seat of the motor vehicle is not equipped with a combination lap and shoulder belt.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

OREGON
Children under 8 weighing more than 40 lbs. and who are 4 feet 9 inches or shorter, must ride in a child safety system which elevates them (i.e. booster seat) so the lap and shoulder belt fit them properly.
Child passengers who weigh 40 lbs. or less must be properly secured in a child safety system.
Child passengers under 1 year of age, regardless of weight, or children who weigh 20 lbs. or less, must be properly secured in a child safety system in a rear-facing position.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

PENNSYLVANIA
Children ages 8 until 18 must be restrained in all seating positions in a properly adjusted and fastened safety seat belt system.
Children ages 4 until 8 must be securely fastened in a booster seat.
Children under age 4 must be securely fastened in a child passenger restraint system.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

RHODE ISLAND
Children age 8 until 18, or less than 8 and who are more than 57 inches or weighing more than 80 lbs. are required to be in a seat belt.
All children under age 8 shall be properly restrained in the rear seat of the vehicle.
Children under age 8, less than 57 inches, and less than 80 lbs. must be transported in the rear seat and properly restrained in a child restraint system.
A violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

SOUTH CAROLINA
Children ages 1 until 6 and weighing more than 80 lbs. must be restrained in a seat belt. A child under 6 years who can sit with his or her knees bent over the vehicle seat edge when sitting up straight with his or her back firmly against the seat may wear a seat belt.
Children ages 1 until 6 and weighing 40 to 80 lbs. must be properly restrained in a booster seat.
Children ages 1 until 6 and weighing 20 to 40 lbs. must be properly restrained in a child seat.
Children under age 6 must ride in the rear seat of the vehicle. This does not apply if all rear seats are taken by children under 6.
Children under age 1 or under 20 lbs. must be properly restrained in a rear-facing child seat.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

SOUTH DAKOTA
Children under age 18 must wear a seat belt.
Children under age 5 and weighing less than 40 lbs. must be properly restrained in a child restraint system.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

TENNESSEE
Children ages 9 until 16 must be properly restrained in a seat belt.
Children under age 9 are required to be seated in the rear seat of the vehicle, if available and children ages 9 until 13 are encouraged to be seated in the rear seat of the vehicle, if available.
Children ages 4 until 9 and less than 4 feet 9 inches must be properly restrained in a booster seat.
Children ages 1 until 4 weighing more than 20 lbs. must be properly restrained in a child seat.
Children less than 1 year, or children under 20 lbs., must be properly restrained in a rear-facing child seat.
Violation of the child restraint laws is a standard offense.

TEXAS
Children ages 8 until 17 or at least 57 inches must be secured by a safety belt provided that the child is occupying a seat equipped with a safety belt.
Children under age 8 and less than 57 inches must be secured in a child passenger safety seat system in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

UTAH
Children under age 8 are required to use a child restraint system unless the child is at least 4 feet 9 inches tall.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

VERMONT
Children ages 8 until 18 must be restrained in a child safety seat or seat belt.
Children age 1 year or older or until age 8 and more than 20 lbs. must be properly restrained in a federally approved child passenger restraint system.
Children age 1 and under and less than 20 lbs. must be restrained in a rear-facing infant seat.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

VIRGINIA
Children ages 8 until 18 must be secured in a child restraint, booster seat, or safety belt regardless of seating position.
Children under age 8 must be secured in a child restraint or booster seat, as appropriate.
Children under 1 year must be restrained in a rear-facing infant seat.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

WASHINGTON
Seat belts or appropriate child safety seats are required for children under age 16.
An appropriate fitting child restraint system, installed in accordance with the instructions of the vehicle manufacturer and child restraint system, is required until a child is age 8, unless the child is 4 feet 9 inches or taller
Children under age 13 must be in the rear seat where it is practical to do so.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

WEST VIRGINIA
Children ages 8 until 18 must be in a seat belt in all seats.
Children under age 8 must be restrained in a child passenger safety device.
Children under age 8 and at least 4 feet 9 inches may be in a safety belt in all seats.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

WISCONSIN
Children must ride in a rear-facing car seat until the age of 1 and at least 20 lbs.
Then they must ride in a forward-facing child seat until age 4 or they weigh more than 40 lbs. Children under age 4 must be properly secured in a child restraint system in the rear seat, if possible. They must then ride in a booster seat until they turn 8, weigh more than 80 lbs., or are taller than 4 feet 9 inches. Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

WYOMING
Children under age 9 must be secured in a child safety restraint system. The child must be restrained in the rear seat unless the vehicle has only 1 row of seats, then the child may be secured in a child safety restraint system in the front seat.
Violation of the child restraint law is a standard offense.

PUERTO RICO
Children under the age of 4 years traveling on public highways must be in protective car seat (exempts handicapped or incapacitated children). Children age 4 until 9 or under 57 inches must be in a booster seat. Children age 9 and older or over 57 inches must be using seat belt properly. The driver is responsible for compliance with provision and subject to penalty for failure to comply.
Children under age 12 must be in the rear seat of a vehicle, if possible.