Kentucky Car Seat Laws & Requirements

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For the safety and security of the people of Kentucky, the state has issued guidelines for car seats. Unfortunately, many children are injured due to neglecting these important guidelines.

The car seat laws in Kentucky require children under the age of 4 to ride in a child seat when in a motor vehicle.

After the child turns eight, before their car seat expires, the child must then use a booster seat till they turn 18.

Buckle up! If you’re looking for a comprehensive guide on these laws to keep the little ones safe, you’ve come to the right place.

I’ll take you through everything regarding these laws for the state of Kentucky.

Kentucky Car Seat Requirements By Ages

Learn when your child can go to a booster seat in Kentucky by my in-depth guide

The age of your child determines Kentucky car seat guidelines.

For example, if your child is under four years old, you must use a rear-facing car seat.

The front-facing requirement changes when your child is at least 15 pounds and two years old, while you need to use a booster seat for kids between 4 and 8 years old.

1 Year Old

In Kentucky, children less than 1-year-old must be in a rear-facing car seat designed for their weight and height.

More importantly, the car seat should be installed in the vehicle’s rear seats.

Children younger than two years old and weighing less than 20 pounds must be in a car seat with a five-point harness.

2 Year Old

2-year-olds should ride in a forward-facing car seat.

A 2-year-old can ride in either a rear-facing or forward-facing car seat, depending on the manufacturer’s recommendations for that specific seat.

3 Year Old

Your 3-year-old must use a car seat with rear facing till they are either 4 feet 9 inches tall or weigh 40 pounds.

The child’s car seat must have a five-point harness, which is the safest kind of restraint for children in this age group.

4 Year Old

4-year-olds must use a booster seat till the age of eight years. They must also use a booster seat till they are 40 pounds.

5 Year Old

You’ll need to keep your 5-year-old in a booster seat until their shoulder belt fits properly. This usually happens when your child is about six and between 4’6″ and 5’7″ tall.

6 Year Old

When your child reaches 6, they are legally allowed to use a booster seat.

A 6-year-old should also be at least 4 feet 9 inches tall and weigh between 60 and 80 pounds to use a regular seat belt without being too loose or tight.

7 – 9 Year Old

7 to 9-year-olds are still required to use a booster seat till they have a certain height or weight. More specifically, they should be 4’9″ or weigh 80 pounds, whichever comes first.

10 Year Old

Ten years old is the minimum age for a booster seat, a seat designed to help your child sit up straight in the car seat.

A booster seat is not a requirement in Kentucky, but safety experts recommend it as a way to keep your child safer while riding in a car.

Once your child ‘literally’ grows out of the booster seat, the Kids are ready for their first adult-sized seat belt.

Car Seat Weight And Height Requirements In Kentucky

In Kentucky, the child must be able to sit without slouching to properly use the harness of an infant seat.

The shoulder belt should cross over their shoulder and chest area while sitting upright in their seat with both feet on the floorboard.

The maximum weight limit for a vehicle safety seat shall not exceed 65 pounds when used rear-facing and 80 pounds when used forward-facing.

Type Of Car Seat Laws In Kentucky

Just as the type of car seat may differ, so do the car seat laws. The State of Kentucky has rolled out specific guidelines catering to different types of car seats.

1. Rear Facing Car Seat

The safest place for a child is in the rear-facing position in a car seat. This means that your child should be facing backward during travel.

During the early ages of children, specifically two and under, or weighing around 40 pounds, Rear-facing Car seats are required.

2. Forward Facing Car Seat

A forward-facing car seat is for children who weigh at least 22 pounds and are at least one year old.

A child should remain in a seat that is forward-facing till they have hit the height and weight limit allowed by the manufacturer.

Some children will outgrow their car seats before they reach maximum height or weight, so it’s important to keep an eye on your child’s development and follow recommended usage guides.

3. Booster Seat

Booster seats boost children up so that the car’s seat belt fits properly. The booster seat is placed on top of a car seat, which can be either forward-facing or rear-facing.

If a child is not in a booster seat but still uses the same car seat as they did before, they may need to be moved into a new one because their weight has changed, and their height is too tall for the current model.

When Is The Time For My Child To Sit In The Front Seat In Kentucky?

When a child reaches the height of about 5 feet or is older than 8, a booster seat is no longer a legal requirement.

This is when a child can sit in the front. However, it’s still best to advise them to be seated in the rear seats.

What Happens If You Leave Your Child In A Car In Kentucky?

The punishment for leaving your child in a car in Kentucky is severe. If you leave your child in a car, you could be charged with a Class D felony and face up to five years in prison.

If you are convicted of this crime, there is no probation available.

However, the judge may order community service instead of incarceration as part of your sentence if they feel it would be more appropriate.

Taxi Car Seat Laws In Kentucky

In Kentucky, taxi drivers must have car seats for children under eight years old. They also need to ensure that the seats are in good condition and not expired.

If a driver is found violating this law, they can face up to 60 days in jail and fines of up to $500 per violation.

Kentucky Law Regarding Car Seats In Accidents

In an accident, a child can suffer serious injuries if they are not properly secured in the car. The law states that children under eight must be in a child seat.

Children under the age of two years must be use a car seat that is rear-facing.

Children around eight years must use a booster seat till they are 4’9″ tall or weigh 80 pounds, whichever comes first.

Uber Car Seat Laws In Kentucky

Uber, like a taxi, is a service regulated by the state, and Uber drivers are required to follow the same laws as other taxi drivers when it comes to transporting children.

The law states that children under one must use a rear facing seat unless they are at least two years old.

Children between 1 and 4 years old should use either an infant car seat unless their height is 40 inches or less; this decreases their risk of injury in case of an accident during the crash.


No matter how streamlined the Kentucky car seat laws are, the most important thing is to keep your children safe while they travel.

The safest way to do this is by buying a good quality car seat and installing it correctly.

And to ensure your child is safe on the road, always use a car seat approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

I know that keeping up with all the regulations can be difficult. That’s why I’m here to help! I hope you found these Kentucky car seat laws and rules helpful.