North Dakota Car Seat Laws & Requirements

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North Dakota is a great state, but it can feel overwhelming if you’re a new parent.

There’s so much to think about, from the best childcare options to whether or not you have to buy a car seat for your baby.

You might even wonder how old they need to be before they can ride in the front seat or what kind of car seat they should use.

Car seat laws in North Dakota state that children younger than 8 years old make use of a car seat or booster seat as per their size or weight.

It is against the law to put anyone under the age of 16 in the front passenger seat of a vehicle unless being properly secured by an approved child restraint system.

Moving on, I’ll review the laws you must follow in North Dakota in more details so let’s get started without any further delay.

North Dakota Car Seat Requirements By Ages

What are the car seat regulations in North Dakota? My in-depth guide explains everything you need to know

In North Dakota, all children under 18 must ride in an appropriate child safety seat while traveling in a vehicle.

In this article, I’ll give you an overview of what North Dakota requires by age and the types of seats allowed for each age group.

1 Year Old

A child who is one year old or older must be in an approved car seat.

The child may ride rear-facing in a convertible car seat, which must be in the vehicle’s back seat, as required by North Dakota law.

2 Year Old

A child two years old or older may ride forward-facing in a convertible car seat, but only if it is installed with a harness.

A child who weighs more than 40 pounds or is taller than 40 inches must use a booster seat. The booster seat must be properly secured to the vehicle with lap shoulder belt.

3 Year Old

By the time they’re three years old, your child will have outgrown their infant carrier and should be riding in a booster seat with a 5-point harness.

The booster seat may be either forward-facing or rear-facing, depending on your preference and needs of your child’s size and weight.

The car seat must be installed according to the manufacturer’s instructions, and it must be placed in the vehicle’s back seat if possible.

4 Year Old

Children four years old are required to ride in a booster seat. If a child is tall enough to reach the vehicle’s controls, they must wear a lap and shoulder belt.

5 Year Old

A five-year-old child who weighs at least 40 pounds should ride in a booster seat. A child should remain in a booster seat till 8 years or 60 pounds.

6 Year Old

A 6-year-old must be secured in a booster seat; however, it is not required if their vehicle has built-in head restraints and lap belts.

If there are no built-in head restraints and lap belts, then it is recommended that children remain in their booster seats.

7 – 9 Year Old

Children 7 to 9 years old are required to use a booster seat or safety belt. They can use the safety belt if they meet their age’s height and weight requirements.

If they are shorter than 4’9″ or are lighter than 80 pounds are required to use a booster seat until they turn ten years old.

10 Year Old

If a child is ten years old, they don’t need a booster seat anymore! To wear just your regular seat belt, you must be taller than 4’9″ or weigh at least 80 pounds.

If you’re shorter than 4’9″ or weigh less than 80 pounds, you still need to wear a booster seat until you reach these height and weight guidelines.

Car Seat Weight And Height Requirements In North Dakota

North Dakota law requires that children under the age of six use rear-facing car seats until they reach the age of two and weigh at least 20 pounds.

For kids between the ages of two and five, the state recommends using a forward-facing harnessed seat.

Once children reach their sixth birthday, they may use a booster seat till they reach a weight of 80 pounds or a height of 4’9″.

Type Of Car Seat Laws In North Dakota

In North Dakota, car seat requirements are in effect to keep children safe from injury or fatality; hence, these laws and rules must be followed to ensure your child’s safety.

The first thing you need to know is that there are different types of car seats in North Dakota, and each type of car seat is designed for a specific age range and weight limit while having different height requirements as well as different ways of installation.

The type of car seat you need depends on your child’s age and weight.

1. Rear Facing Car Seat

Children under two years old must be placed in a rear-facing car seat with a five-point harness.

The safest way to transport young children is with an infant carrier or convertible seat that faces backward.

2. Forward Facing Car Seat

Once your child reaches 20 pounds, you can switch to a forward-facing car seat with a five-point harness, provided their head is at least one inch below the top of the shell.

You will also need to use a tether strap on all forward-facing seats that have them available for purchase.

3. Booster Seat

In North Dakota, a child must be in a car seat until they are either 4’9″ tall or weigh 40 pounds.

Once the child meets these requirements, you can move the child to a booster seat once they meet these requirements.

Booster seats are only meant for children who have grown out of their car seats and exceed both weight and height limits, and so with the help of booster seats, the child is raised so that their head is at least 1″ from the top of the vehicle’s seat back.

They help keep them safe when they’re too small to fit properly in the vehicle’s safety belt alone.

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

Your child can sit in the front seat depending on age, height, and weight.

In North Dakota, children who are eight years old or 4’9″ tall can sit in the front seat. However, if your child is under eight years old, they must be strapped into a rear-facing car seat.

What Happens If You Leave Your Child In A Car In North Dakota?

If you leave your child alone in a parked car, you could be charged with child abuse and endangerment.

The law states that leaving a minor under 12 unattended in a car constitutes neglect.

If your child is younger than six years old, leaving them alone in a car can lead to criminal charges against you.

Taxi Car Seat Laws In North Dakota

In North Dakota, taxi drivers are required to carry car seats for children. The minimum age for this law is six years old, and children can be transported until they are 13 years old.

If you are traveling with an infant, a taxi seat will be provided. However, if you are traveling with a child between the ages of 1 and 4, you must provide your car seat.

North Dakota Law Regarding Car Seats In Accidents

In North Dakota, the law states that all children under the age of 8 must be restrained in a car seat.

If you are involved in an accident while driving, your child is required to be in a car seat. You can be fined $50 per violation if you do not follow the law.

Uber Car Seat Laws In North Dakota

In North Dakota, Uber drivers are required to have car seats in their cars due to the Law requiring children younger than eight years old to be in a car seat when traveling by car.

This law applies to all vehicles, including Uber vehicles.

Uber drivers who doesn’t have a car seat could be fined up to $100 if they are caught not having one in their vehicle when transporting children younger than eight years or below 4 feet in height and do not meet the weight limit for their current seat.


North Dakota car seat laws are fairly straightforward, but they’re also adequately strict; hence you have to make sure your child is properly buckled in at all times, which means using the proper car seat until they reach the age of 4, and then switching them over to a booster seat until they’re 8.

These rules have changed a lot over the past few years, yet there’s still plenty of confusion.

Fortunately, I’ve got all the information you need to ensure your child’s safety the next time you’re on the road. Remember to check out this article!