Nevada car seat laws apply to infants through age 16. Whether you’re a resident of Nevada or just visiting, you must know and follow Nevada’s car seat laws. Here’s what you need to know from our Las Vegas car accident attorneys.
What Are Nevada’s Car Seat Laws?
Nevada requires all passengers ages six and younger to use car seats or booster seats. The exact requirements depend on the age and weight of the child. Each car seat or booster seat must be federally approved and installed according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Nevada’s car seat laws are found in Nevada Revised Statutes 484B.157.
Nevada Car Seat Laws – Nevada Law 484b.157
Nevada law 484B.157 requires all passengers under the age of six and weighing less than 60 pounds to use a car seat. A child must have a child seat that’s approved by the U.S. Department of Transportation for the child’s height and weight. The car seat must meet the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. The laws apply any time a child rides in a motor vehicle that’s equipped to carry passengers.
What Kind of Car Seat Do I Need for My Child in Nevada?
The exact kind of car seat that you need for your child depends on the child’s height and weight. According to Pediatric Associates, you should follow these guidelines:
- Age 0-3 — Rear-facing car seat; a child should continue to use a rear-facing car seat until they reach the maximum weight set by the manufacturer for the car seat.
- Age 4-6 — Forward-facing car seat; use a forward facing car seat until the child reaches the maximum weight and height limit; The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends a forward-facing car seat through age six.
- Ages 7-11 — Although Nevada law doesn’t require it, your child should use a booster seat until they reach 4’9” tall. The lap belt should fit snugly across the upper thighs. The shoulder belt should cover the child’s chest and upper body and should not cross the face.
- All children under 13 — Children under 13 should ride in the back seat of the vehicle. The back seat is best even if the child is in a car seat or a booster seat.
- All children under 16 — Children under 16 must wear a seat belt no matter where they sit in the vehicle.
When Can a Child Face Forward in a Car Seat in Nevada?
A child can face forward in a car seat in Nevada when they are at least one years old and weigh at least 20 pounds. The law in Nevada says that a person who transports a child in a motor vehicle may use any car seat as long as the seat is federally approved and the driver follows the manufacturer’s recommendations for the child’s age and weight. Most manufacturers allow a child to use a forward-facing car seat once they are 12 months old and weigh 20 pounds or more.
What Are the Penalties for a Car Seat Violation in Nevada?
The penalties for a car seat violation in Nevada are a fine of $100-$500 and 10-50 hours of community service. Repeat offenders face a penalty of $500-$1,000 and 50-100 hours of community service. If you receive three or more citations for car seat violations in Nevada, the state may suspend your driver’s license for 30-180 days.
Nevada Car Seat Fine Waiver
If you’re responsible for a car seat violation, you can complete training and inspection to waive your fines. The court may give you a list of approved Department of Public Safety inspectors for car seats. You have 60 days from the date of sentencing to complete the requirements and show proof of completion to the court.
If you complete the training and inspection, the court must waive your fine and community service for a first offense. For a second offense, they can cut your fine and community service in half. You can only get one waiver in your life for a Nevada car seat training and inspection.
The Department of Public Safety can charge for their programs, but the charges must be reasonable. They must operate as a non-profit. They can offer you the opportunity to purchase a car seat as part of the program.
Is a Nevada Car Seat Violation a Moving Violation?
No, a Nevada car seat violation is not a moving violation. It’s a non-moving violation. Because it’s a non-moving violation, you don’t get demerit points on your license under Nevada law 483.473 for a violation. However, you still face fines and mandatory community service.
Is a Nevada Car Seat Violation Automatically Negligence or Recklessness?
No, a Nevada car seat violation is not automatically negligence or recklessness. In fact, Nevada’s car seat law says that a car seat violation may not be considered negligence in a civil action. That means if your child is hurt in an accident, the other side can’t use it against you that you didn’t have your child appropriately restrained in a car seat.
Instead, your child may recover fully for their damages whatever they might be even if their injuries could have been reduced if they had been secured in the right car seat. Also, law enforcement can’t charge you with negligence or reckless driving under Nevada law 484B.653 for a car seat violation.
Are There Exceptions to Nevada’s Car Seat Laws?
Yes, there are exceptions to Nevada’s car seat laws. Nevada’s car seat laws don’t apply to children using public transportation or a school bus. They also don’t apply when a child rides in an emergency vehicle. If a driver carries a doctor’s statement that it’s impractical for a child to wear a seatbelt because of the child’s weight, fitness or another medical condition, they are exempt from Nevada’s car seat laws.
Contact Our Nevada Car Accident Attorneys
Has your child been in an accident that involves a car seat? Are you wondering how issues surrounding a car seat might impact your child’s claim for compensation? We are Nevada’s car accident attorneys, and we can help.
Our team of attorneys can learn about your case, explain how the law applies, and help you understand your options. We can also work to help you receive the compensation that you and your child deserve after a car accident. Contact us today to talk about your case.