Maryland Car Seat Laws & Requirements

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Automobile accidents are prevalent, so it is critical to travel with a complete understanding of car seat legislation to safeguard your child from the severity of an accident.

There are also a lot of benefits of car seats for your children, such as extra comfort, safety, and stability.

Plus, learning more about the laws in Maryland will make things lenient for you, especially when you plan on transitioning from one car seat to another.

Car seat laws in Maryland state that every child under 13 years old should be safely secured on a car seat and must be seated on the back seat of the vehicle.

However, there are some requirements of car seats that every parent must fulfill, including important factors like age, weight, and height.

If you want to learn more about this topic in-depth, you should read this post and stay to the conclusion.

Furthermore, many people make mistakes due to a lack of precise understanding, leading to more serious issues.

So, if you wish to stay away from them, keep reading!

Maryland Car Seat Requirements By Ages

Find out when can your babies face forward in Maryland

Many states talk about the laws set for children between the ages of one to eight, but there are no specific laws for children beyond the age of eight.

This can be quite confusing for parents at times because they do not know whether they should or shouldn’t put their child in a safe car seat.

Well, worry not, because I will be mentioning kids above the age of 8, so everything can be understandable.

1 Year Old

Children at the age of one are too young to be riding without a car seat.

According to the law, it is stated that they ride on a rear-facing infant-only car seat. It is known to be the only safest seat to keep them stable.

2 Year Old

Moving on to the children at age two, the law mentions putting them on a rear-facing car seat unless their height and weight exceed the car seat requirements.

Only then can they make a move to a forward-facing car seat.

3 Year Old

It is said that new models of car seats can withstand a weight of up to 40 pounds, so if children at the age of three are anywhere near that weight limit, they can easily ride rear-facing.

4 Year Old

Most people start moving their four-year-old kids to a forward-facing car seat. This is only possible when the child is above the height and weight limit of the rear-facing car seat.

5 Year Old

Five-year-old kids also sit forward-facing because they would require more legroom and space to move their body around.

However, this requires extra training because kids at this age are too smart and can easily unbuckle themselves.

Parents are responsible for training their kids on how to sit on a forward-facing car seat.

6 Year Old

According to the law, the car seat requirements for six years old children are not made clear. However, you must check if the child outgrows the rear-facing and forward-facing car seat.

Then only he/she should move to a booster car seat. You can notice when the child does not fit well on a certain seat, and the height is above the seat’s headrest.

7 – 9 Year Old

When the child is seven or eight, the best seat to sit on is the booster car seat because it will be the only safe option.

It is important to see the height and weight at this age because most kids grow faster. Moreover, at nine, the laws allow children to sit in the car with seat belts.

But this should happen slowly, and parents must check if the belt fits perfectly and is not loose around the lap or chest area.

10 Year Old

At ten, the child will be perfectly trained and know how to sit properly with a seat belt on. But just make sure that he/she is only sitting in the back seat as that is safer.

Car Seat Weight And Height Requirements In Maryland

When a kid’s weight is less than 40 pounds and their height is less than 4 inches, the best way to ride is by sitting on a safe child restraint system.

Furthermore, as the child grows and weighs up to 40 pounds, it is sufficient to ride on a rear-facing car seat.

Additionally, when the height is around 4 feet 9 inches, and the weight is more than 40 pounds, the child can switch to the forward-facing car seat.

At last, comes the booster car seat, which is only allowed when the child outgrows the forward-facing car seat.

Type Of Car Seat Laws In Maryland

In Maryland, all types of car seats are evaluated differently, and each has its own set of legislation that parents should get familiar with so that they may make informed judgments.

1. Rear Facing Car Seat

Kids under eight must be restrained by a safe child restraint if they are shorter than 4’9 inches. The rear-facing seat is recommended for kids below the age of 2.

As long as your kids are within the height and weight limits of the seat specified by the manufacturers, you must always keep them rear-facing.

However, it is worth mentioning that certain current rear-facing car seats are rated for kids up to 40 pounds.

2. Forward Facing Car Seat

After the child outgrows the car seat that is rear-facing; the child moves to this kind of car seat.

This is mainly for children from 4 to 8, but it depends if the height is more than 4’9 inches and the weight is more than 40 pounds.

It is also important to note that this car seat is a step away from safety.

3. Booster Seat

As previously stated, youngsters under the age of eight and under the height of 4 feet 9 inches must travel in a safety seat.

Although a child over 4’9 inches is exempt from using a car seat, it is still better to use a booster seat until the seat belt fits.

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

There are no specific regulations regarding when the child is allowed to sit in the front seat.

However, according to the NHTSA and CDC, a child should only be allowed to sit in the front seat after age 13.

Do keep in mind that the laws in Maryland only say that a rear-facing car seat should not be placed on the front seat, especially when airbags are on.

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

According to the law, it is illegal to leave a child in a car unattended in Maryland. It is illegal only if the child is eight years or younger.

You could be charged with a fine of up to $500 or 30 days in prison, or both in case of violation.

Taxi Car Seat Laws In Maryland

In Maryland, taxis are expected from this certain law, meaning you do not need a car seat to ride in a taxi. But just to be on the safer side, you should take your car seat with you.

Maryland Law Regarding Car Seats In Accidents

Maryland does not have any specific laws regarding car seats in accidents.

However, it advises all parents to follow the instructions as well as the rules and regulations mentioned by the car seat manufacturers.

So you can better understand what to do when an accident happens.

Uber Car Seat Laws In Maryland

Unlike taxis, Uber services are subjected to following the car seat rules in the state of Maryland.

Make sure you have a car seat with you, or it could be possible that you will be provided with one in an Uber ride.


Maryland car seat laws are fairly severe, and everyone is expected to attend them.

I hope this article helped you find what you were looking for; I also tried my best to include all the relevant information related to the topic so you can save time searching elsewhere.

The only safe method for a child to ride in a car is in a car seat.

It will keep them more securely tied in position, provide more comfort, and, most importantly, protect them from a terrible injury.

It’s also worth noting that if you start putting your child in a car seat while they’re very little, they’ll adjust quickly. Simply take your time when switching from one car seat to the next.