New Jersey Car Seat Laws

New Jersey Car Seat Laws

  • In the State of New Jersey children under the age of eight (8) who weigh less than eighty (80) pounds must be properly secured in the rear seat of the vehicle in a child safety seat or a booster seat.
  • If the vehicle does not have a rear seat the child may sit in the front seat if they are properly secured in a child safety seat or a booster seat.
  • Rear facing infant seats should never be placed in the front seat of a vehicle with an active front passenger side airbag, see Child Passenger Safety Advisory 
  • Children that are under the age of eight (8) but weigh more than eighty (80) pounds may be secured with a properly fastened seat belt.
  • Children from eight (8) to eighteen (18) years of age must be secured with a properly fastened seat belt regardless of their weight.

Rear Facing Child Safety Seats

  • The safest place for a rear facing car seat is in the rear seat of the vehicle.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for height and weight limits of a rear facing infant seat.
  • Children should be secured in a rear facing child safety seat until the child is one (1) year of age and twenty (20) pounds.

Forward Facing Child Safety Seats

  • After a child has reached the age of one (1) and weighs twenty (20) pounds the child should be placed in a forward facing child safety seat in the rear seat of the vehicle.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for height and weight limits of a forward facing child safety seat.
  • Typically the limit for a front facing child safety seat is reached when the child is age four (4) and weighs approximately forty (40) pounds.

Booster Seats

  • Usually a child will outgrow their forward facing child safety seat and move to a booster seat when they reach the age of four (4) and weigh a minimum of forty (40) pounds.
  • The booster seat should be secured in the rear seat of the vehicle.
  • Booster seats fit properly when the lap belt fits comfortably across the upper thighs and the shoulder belt fits across the chest (not the neck).

Seat Belts


  • When a child reaches the age of eight (8) or after they reach the height of four feet, nine inches (4’9”) the child may use an adult seat belt in the back seat of the vehicle.
  • A properly fitted seat belt fits comfortably across the upper thighs and the shoulder belt fits across the chest (not the neck).

The New Jersey Seat Belt Law

  • In the State of New Jersey all passenger vehicles including SUV’s, Vans and Pickup trucks must be equipped with seat belts.
  • All passengers that are a minimum of eight (8) years of age and under eighteen (18) years of age, including drivers and front seat passengers must be secured with a properly fastened seat belt system.
  • In 2010 new legislation was signed into law that requires all passengers regardless of position in the vehicle to be secured with a properly fastened seat belt system.
  • The driver of the vehicle is responsible for all passengers under the age of eighteen (18)

Source Links for this Page

New Jersey Child Passenger Safety Law

New Jersey Child Passenger Safety Advisory

New Jersey Seat Belt Law

Other New Jersey Laws

New Jersey Traumatic Brain Injury Laws