2023 Illinois Car Seat Law: Everything You Need To Know

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You want to keep your children as safe as possible when driving. And one of the best ways to do that is by making sure they’re properly secured in a car seat that’s appropriate for their age, height, and weight.

Every year, thousands of children are injured or killed in car accidents.

Even more tragic is that many of these accidents could have been prevented if the child had been properly secured in a car seat.

As of 2023, Illinois car seat law will require all children under the age of 8 to be secured in a child restraint system while traveling in a motor vehicle. This law will help keep our children safe and prevent needless injuries and deaths.

This guide will provide everything you need to know about the new Illinois car seat law, including when a child can sit in the front seat of a car in Illinois, Illinois car seat law after the accident, and where to find resources for more information.

So without further ado, let’s get started!

Illinois Rear-Facing Car Seat Law

The Illinois Rear-Facing Car Seat Law is in place to ensure the safety of children while riding in a motor vehicle.

The law requires that children remain rear-facing until at least 2 years old or until they reach 40lbs or 40″ in height.

Your child’s safety should always come first, and that’s why rear-facing is such an important position in a car seat. This method hugely decreases the amount of head and neck injuries that could potentially occur during an accident.

Children should remain facing the back of the car until they exceed the weight or height limit for their convertible car seat, which is typically 40 pounds or 4 years old.

Nearly all convertible car seats today can accommodate kids this size rear-facing.

The Illinois rear-facing car seat law does not specify an age requirement.

Still, it recognizes that motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for children between the ages of 4 and 14 and that children should continue riding in a harnessed car seat until they reach the maximum height or weight specified by the manufacturer.

To learn more about rear-facing car seat laws in other cities in the US, you can check out the following links:
Ohio Rear-Facing Car Seat Law
Indiana Rear-Facing Car Seat Law
Michigan Rear-Facing Car Seat Law

Illinois Booster Seat Law

The Illinois Booster Seat Law ensures that children are properly protected while traveling in a vehicle.

The law requires that all children up to the age of 8 be seated in a booster seat or other appropriate child restraint, instead of using an adult seatbelt.

This is because the adult seatbelt is not typically suitable for children until they reach a weight of around 165 pounds and are at least 10 years old.

Until then, a booster seat will help to keep them safe by ensuring that the adult belt fits properly across their chest and hips.

It is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using a booster seat.

Most manufacturers now require that children be at least 4 years old, 40 inches tall, and weigh at least 40 pounds before using a booster seat.

The Illinois Secretary of State’s office offers several resources to help parents ensure their children are properly restrained while traveling.

These include a handy 5-step test to see if your child is ready for an adult seatbelt, as well as a list of frequently asked questions about booster seats and car safety for kids.

To learn more about rear-facing car seat laws in other cities in the US, you can check out the following links:
California Booster Seat Law
Oregon Booster Seat Law
Tennessee Booster Seat Law

when can a child sit in the front seat of a car in Illinois

Though there are no Illinois laws about whether kids should sit in the front seat, As per car seat experts, children under 13 years old should not ride in the front.

After they turn 13, it is considered safe to travel in a car with a seat belt on, and your child can sit in the front seat.

Car seat experts say that the back seats of cars are usually the safest and parents should keep their children there for as long as they can.

To learn more about forward-facing car seat laws in other US states, you can check out Mississippi, New York and New Mexico forward-facing car seat laws.

Illinois Infant/Toddler Car Seat Law

As per Illinois car seat law, children under the age of 2 have to be in a car seat in a rear-facing position. This is to keep them safe. They have to stay in this car seat until they are 2 years old.

Illinois Forward-facing Car Seat Law

The Illinois forward-facing car seat law requires that children between the ages of 4 and 8 be in a forward-facing car seat when they have outgrown the height and weight requirements of the rear-facing car seat.

Reaching the point of putting a child into a forward-facing car seat position with a system of harnesses is one of the developmental milestones that Illinois parents experience with their children.

It is important for parents to be aware of these requirements in order to keep their children safe while driving.

For additional information on forward-facing car seat laws in other US states, consider exploring the regulations in Texas, Delaware, and Massachusetts to better understand the varying requirements across the country.

Taxi Car Seat Law in Illinois

The Taxi car seat law in Illinois says that if you are transporting a child under 8 years old in a car, you have to put them in a special seat to keep them safe.

Taxis are different than regular cars, though, because they are commercial vehicles. That means that the law doesn’t apply to them.

Read Also: 2022 Florida Car Seat Law: Everything You Need To Know

Illinois Car Seat Laws for Children Ages Two to Four

Children between the ages of two and four in Illinois must be restrained in an approved car seat.

This can be a rear-facing car seat or a forward-facing car seat, but it is important that children are still secured in an approved car seat even after they have outgrown their rear-facing child safety seat.

Illinois car seat law suggests that children under the age of two ride in a rear-facing car seat to minimize injury during travel.

Read Also: 2022 Georgia Car Seat Law: Everything You Need To Know

Illinois Car Seat Law for Children Ages Four to Eight

According to Illinois car seat law, children between the ages of four and eight must be in a car seat or booster seat, depending on their height and weight.

The seat should be a forward-facing car seat, and the child should continue to use it until they are big enough to wear the seat belt properly with the assistance of a booster.

If the safety belt is not in the correct position with the booster seat’s positioning design, then the child should not be secured in a booster seat.

While sitting in a booster seat, it should be cared that the lap belt is positioned across the child’s thighs rather than across the stomach and the shoulder belt should be positioned across their shoulder and chest, not across their neck or face.

illinois car seat law after accident

As per Illinois car seat law, if you were using a child safety seat during an automobile accident, your insurance policy is required by law to cover the replacement of that seat.

This requirement exists to ensure that children involved in accidents are protected as much as possible, and that parents do not have to worry about the expense of replacing a child safety seat if it is damaged or destroyed in an accident.

Child safety seats can be expensive, so this provision of Illinois law is designed to help families protect their children without having to worry about the cost of replacement.

Any policyholder who does not want or need this coverage can choose to waive it, but must do so in writing.

Leaving Child in Car Law in Illinois

Leaving a child in a car alone for more than 10 minutes is illegal in Illinois, unless the child is supervised by someone at least 14 years old. If you leave a child in a car unattended, you could face criminal charges.

Is it Illegal to Smoke in a Car with a Child in Illinois?

Smoking is illegal in a car with a child passenger in the state of Illinois. The law states that it is illegal to smoke in any vehicle when there is a child under the age of 18 present.

This includes both smoking cigarettes and using e-cigarettes. Fines for violating this law can range from $100 to $500.

There are several reasons for why this law exists. First, smoking is harmful to children’s health.

Second, children are more likely to be injured in a car accident if someone is smoking.

Third, children can be affected by secondhand smoke even if they are not sitting in the car seat directly next to the smoker.

Smoking is already prohibited in many places where children are present, including schools, daycare centers, and airplanes.

This new law expands on those restrictions to include cars. Parents who smoke should try to find another way to transport their children when they need to smoke, such as taking a walk or riding a bike.

When Can a Child Sit Without a Booster Seat in Illinois?

There are different rules for when children can stop using a booster seat in Illinois car seat law. Kids should use a booster seat until they are big enough to safely wear a standard lap and shoulder belt.

For most kids, this is around 8 to 12 years old. But if the seat belt doesn’t fit properly, they should keep using the booster seat until they can fit into it correctly.

As a thumb rule children should continue to sit in the back seat until they are at least 13 years old. This is the safest place for a child to sit.

What are the Illinois Car Seat Laws for Pickup Trucks?

As per Illinois car seat law, children aged 8 and under in Illinois are required by law to use a child safety restraint system while riding in any vehicle, including pickup trucks.

Children in Illinois must be properly secured in a car seat when riding in a pickup truck, regardless of their age or weight. Car seats should be rear-facing for infants and toddlers, and forward-facing for older children.

If the child is over 40 pounds and the truck seat only has a lap belt, they may be secured using just the lap belt If the truck does not have a shoulder safety belt system installed in the seat.

If your child is shorter than 40 inches or have weight less than 40 pounds, they must be sit in a rear-facing car seat. Children should never ride in the bed of a truck – did you know that it’s against the law to do so?

Upcoming Changes To Illinois Car Seat Law

Starting in 2019, Illinois car seat law required that all children aged 2 can sir in a forward-facing position and under 2 be seated in a car seat or booster seat in a rear-facing position of the vehicle.

There are no proposed changes to this law as of now, but there may be some in the near future.

FAQs: Illinois car seat law

How old do you have to be to not ride in a car seat in Illinois?

Illinois car seat law requires that kids who ages at least 8 years old must be restrained by a booster seat.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) suggests, however, that children use booster seats until the adult belt properly fits them. For some youngsters, this could be as late as 12 years old.

What is the weight limit to sit in the front seat in Illinois?

In Illinois, there are no legalities tying kids to the backseat–but that doesn’t mean it’s safe for them to sit in the front before the age of 13. Once they’re old enough to strap into a car seat belt securely (age 13+), then they can ride up front.

The Bottom Line

Illinois car seat law states that any child ages less than 8 years must be restrained in an approved safety seat while riding in a car.

We’ve provided everything you need to know about the Illinois car seat laws like we have explained about Illinois rear-facing car seat law, Illinois booster seat law, Illinois forward-facing car seat law and everything you need to know about your child safety while driving in Illinois.

We hope you have found this post helpful. As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. We are always happy to help!

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Hi, my name is Umair Ali and I am the founder and chief editor of CarSeatHeaven.com. My goal is to make car seat shopping simple and easy for parents. With so many fluffy, detailed, and complicated car seat reviews out there, it can be hard to make an informed decision. That's where I come in! I sort through all of the information for you and distill it down into simple, straightforward advice.

At CarSeatHeaven.com, we provide parents with all the information they need to make an informed decision when purchasing a car seat.