Car seats are important for keeping a child safe in a car. Wisconsin has had a very strict car seat law, which was originally created to protect children in cars. The following is everything you need to know about the Wisconsin car seat law and how it may affect you if you drive with a child passenger in Wisconsin.
- Wisconsin Car Seat Laws
- Wisconsin Rear-facing Car Seat Law
- Wisconsin Forward-facing Car Seat Law
- Wisconsin booster seat law for young kids
- Requirements for children to use the front seat in Wisconsin
- Taxi Car Seat Law in Wisconsin
- Wisconsin car seat replacement law after Accident
- Law on leaving a child in a car in Wisconsin
- Penalties For Violating Wisconsin Car Seat Laws
- Is it Illegal to Smoke in a Car with a Child in Wisconsin?
- Car Seat Inspections Help in Wisconsin
- Child passenger safety related videos Wisconsin
- More information and resources on car seat safety Wisconsin
- USA Child Passenger Safety Laws by State
- Best Car Seats of 2022: Ranked by Our Experts
Wisconsin Car Seat Laws
Wisconsin Rear-facing Car Seat Law
Children must rear face in Wisconsin until at least one year old and 20 pounds, according to the state’s rear-facing legislation. In addition, parents are required by law to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for proper usage (known as “proper use”) set forth by their automobile seat manufacturer.
If a child weighs at least 22 pounds and is 1 year old, some manufacturers allow them to use the forward-facing seat. Other manufacturers require that children be 2 years old before they can use the forward-facing seat.
Wisconsin Forward-facing Car Seat Law
Children who are at least a year old and weigh 20 pounds or more, but less than 40 pounds, may ride in the rear seat on forward-facing seats if they fit in the back seat. It’s preferable to wait until your child outgrows the rear-facing requirements before putting him in a forward-facing seat.
Wisconsin booster seat law for young kids
Children must ride in a car seat or booster seat until they are four feet, nine inches tall, or eight years old and weigh 80 pounds in the state of Wisconsin. In the state of Wisconsin, kids under the age of four aren’t permitted to use a booster seat until they reach at least 4 years old and 40 pounds in weight.
Follow the manufacturer’s minimum and maximum dimensions for your booster seat – most manufacturers now demand a height of at least 4 years old, a weight of 40 pounds, and a minimum age of 4 years.
There are 2 types of booster seats:
- High-back booster seats – If your car’s seat back is lower than your child’s ears, you have to use a high-back booster seat to protect your child’s head and neck.
- Backless booster seats – If your car’s seat back is higher than your child’s ears, you can use a backless booster seat.
Requirements for children to use the front seat in Wisconsin
Under state law, there is no specified age at which your child can sit in the front seat, but a rear-facing or forward-facing car seat cannot be placed in the front seat. The safest practice is mentioned by the Wisconsin state government on their official website; your kid should ride in the back seat until they are 13 years old.
If you are confused about which restraint system does your child need, this simple test will make it clear to you whether your child needs to use a booster seat or just a seat belt.
The Five-Step Seat Belt Fit Test:
- Is the child able to sit all of the way back against the auto seat?
- Are the child’s knees able to bend comfortably at the edge of the vehicle seat?
- Is the belt crossing over the shoulder between the neck and arm?
- Is the lap belt as low as possible, with the thighs?
- Is it possible for the child to remain in this position the whole journey?
If you answered “no” to any of these questions, your kid requires a booster seat to travel safely in the car. Boosters are popular with kids since they are more comfortable!
Taxi Car Seat Law in Wisconsin
There are no specific rules in place for cabs and car seats in Wisconsin. However, it is suggested that you bring a car seat along and keep your child secure during the trip in a car. The driver, cannot prevent you from using a child protection system.
Wisconsin car seat replacement law after Accident
There are no laws regarding the replacement of car seats. Because car seats have expiration dates, make sure yours isn’t getting close to that date. Furthermore, after a significant or moderate accident, safety experts recommend changing your car seat.
“NHTSA recommends that car seats be replaced following a moderate or severe crash in order to ensure a continued high level of crash protection for child passengers. Car seats do not automatically need to be replaced following a minor crash.”
Law on leaving a child in a car in Wisconsin
There are currently no restrictions in Wisconsin prohibiting you from leaving a child in the car unattended. The AAP recommends that you leave a small child at least 12 years old or take them with you while driving.
Penalties For Violating Wisconsin Car Seat Laws
You may be fined $175.30 for a violation of the state’s child safety restraint systems law regarding a kid under the age of four years. For an infraction of the child safety restraint systems law in Wisconsin involving a kid under the age of four or eight, you may be fined $150.10 for the first time, $200.50 for the second time, and $263.50 for each subsequent offense.
Is it Illegal to Smoke in a Car with a Child in Wisconsin?
There are no statutes in Wisconsin restricting smoking in a vehicle with a minor. However, we are fully aware of the hazards of secondhand smoke. You don’t want your child to get lung diseases or cancer as a result of your smoking.
Car Seat Inspections Help in Wisconsin
- Wisconsin Department of Transportation Child Passenger Safety Coordinator
- NHTSA car seat inspection Center
- Center for Childhood Safety Inspection Stations
- Central Racine County Health Department Car Seat Inspections
- City of Greenfield Car Seat Safety
- City of Madison Safe Kids Calendar of Events
- City of Sun Prairie Car Seat Education & Installation
- City of Wauwatosa Car Seat Installation & Safety Checks
- CPS Technician Search: Find a CPS Technician
- Outagamie County Public Health Car Seat Safety
- Safe Kids Wisconsin Inspection Stations
- Safe Kids Wisconsin Upcoming Events
Child passenger safety related videos Wisconsin
Zero In Wisconsin: How to Properly Use Child Safety Seats: Intro
Zero In Wisconsin: How To Properly Use Child Safety Seats
Q&A: Child Passenger Safety Tips and Tricks
Booster Seat Safety
More information and resources on car seat safety Wisconsin
- American Academy of Pediatrics Car Seat Recommendations
- American Automobile Association Car Seat Guide
- Booster Seat Guide
- Car seat safety: Avoid 9 common mistakes
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention Child Passenger Safety
- Child safety seat resources
- Indiana University School of Medicine Best Practice Recommendations
- NHTSA Car Seat Recommendations
- Outagamie County – Car Seat Safety
- Parenting in the Early Years
- Premature Babies and Babies with Medical Conditions
- Safe Kids Wisconsin
- Surprising Dangers of Infant Car Seats
- Top 5 Things to Do
- Ultimate car Seat guide
- UW Health Car Seat Education
USA Child Passenger Safety Laws by State
FIND YOUR STATE’S CAR SEAT LAWS
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Best Car Seats of 2022: Ranked by Our Experts