What Are the Penalties for Violating a Car Seat Law in Florida?

Child safety restraints are mandatory to ensure children are appropriately restrained in a car. Florida law requires car seats for children under six years old or who weigh less than 60 pounds. Failing to comply with Florida’s Child Restraint Law could result in a financial penalty of up to $500. If you want to avoid a costly fine, read on for more information about the car and booster seat age in Florida

What Are the Penalties for Violating a Car Seat Law in Florida?Understanding Florida’s Car Seat Law

Florida car seat laws apply to all children traveling on Florida’s roads. These laws also apply regardless of whether the child is a resident of Florida or not. Complying with Florida’s law helps keep children safe while avoiding hefty penalties. 

Florida’s Safety Belt Law

Florida law (FS 316.614) requires all drivers and front-seat passengers to use safety belts when the vehicle is in motion. In addition, all passengers under 18 years old are required to be restrained by a safety belt or child restraint device. 

Florida Car Seat Laws

Florida crash data shows that age and weight-appropriate child restraint devices, booster seats, and seat belts reduce the risks of serious and fatal injuries. The use of child car seats is mandatory for all children in the State of Florida according to the following guidelines:

  • Newborn to three-year-old children must be fastened in a separate car seat, appropriate child restraint, or car seat that is integrated into the vehicle restraint and safety system
  • Four to five-year-old children must use a booster seat, separate car seat, proper child restraint, or seat that is integrated into the vehicle restraint and safety system
  • Children six years and older can use a booster or fasten themselves in a normal seat belt safety restraint

Florida law stipulates that parents must use a federally approved child restraint system. Florida law requires a child to sit in a booster seat from the age of four because they will probably have outgrown the weight or height limit for their car seat.

Florida Car Seat Law Penalties

Parents could be liable to a penalty of $60.00 and three demerit points against their license. These points can be crucial to what you pay in insurance premiums and keeping your license.  

Florida Statute 316.613 states that their car seat laws are not applicable when a child with a known medical condition is exempt from riding in a car seat because it could cause unnecessary discomfort. 

Parents should be ready to provide documentation from a qualified medical professional to law enforcement officers upon request. Make sure your document outlines why the child is exempt and provides contact information for the doctor’s office. 

If you’re unsure whether you’ve violated Florida’s child safety laws or if your child was injured because of someone else’s negligent driving, consult with an experienced attorney in Florida right away.


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