New Hampshire Car Seat Laws

New Hampshire Car Seat Laws

    • In the State of New Hampshire all children under the age of eighteen (18) must be properly secured with a seat belt or a child safety seat.
    • Children under the age of six (6) and less than fifty-five (55) inches in height must be properly secured with a child passenger restraint that meets the United States Department of Transportation safety standards.

  • The driver of a vehicle is responsible for assuring all children are properly secured.

Exceptions to the New Hampshire Car Seat Law

  • Vehicles regularly used to transport passengers for hire.
  • A school bus weighing more than ten-thousand pounds (10,000).
  • Antique vehicles or motorcycles.
  • Children under the age of eighteen that have an individual education plan statement regarding safety issues with the use of restraints.

Child Safety Seat Recommendations

Rear Facing Car SeatFrom Birth to Twelve (12) Months of Age

  • Children under the age of one (1) should always be placed in a rear facing car seat when travelling in a vehicle.
  • If you use a Convertible or 3-in-1 car seat you may be able to keep the child rear-facing for a longer period of time since many of these seats often have higher weight and height limits.
  • Infant-Only car seats are usually designed to be rear facing only therefore limiting the product usability.

Forward Facing Car SeatRear Facing Car SeatFrom One (1) to Three (3) Years of Age


  • Again, the best way to keep a child safe is to keep them in a rear-facing car seat for as long as possible.
  • Knowing the manufacturer’s height and weight limit of your rear-facing car seat will help you to determine if your child is ready to travel in a forward-facing car seat.

Forward Facing Car SeatFrom Four (4) to Seven (7) Years of Age

  • This is the typical age range for children to ride in a forward-facing car seat with a harness.
  • These seats should be placed in the back seat as well.
  • Again it is important to understand the manufactures recommend height and weight limit and making the decision to place your child in booster seat.

From Eight (8) to Twelve (12) Years of Age

  • Children should remain in a booster seat in the back seat of the vehicle until they safely fit into a seat belt.
  • This means the seat belt should fit across the upper thighs snug.
  • In addition the shoulder belt should fit snug across the chest and shoulder and not across the face or neck.
  • As a reminder it is still safer to keep your child riding in the rear seat.

Source Link for this Page

New Hampshire Drivers Manual

NHTSA Four Step Flyer