What are the New Hampshire Car Seat Laws?


Welcome to the New Hampshire Car Seat Laws Explained in Simple, Plain English!

You have just found the perfect place to find out everything there’s to know about car seat laws in New Hampshire (NH).


Being a mom of three, I have to check the car seat laws frequently. This is why I’ve decided to put together this short article to answer the most common questions about car seat laws in NH.

I know how hard it is to find the right law, plus then you have to interpret it probably after some serious sleep deprivation. I’ve been a paralegal before having my kids, so I love to break down complex laws into simple to, understand chunks.

If you have questions regarding booster seats, rear-forward facing car seats or if you need a car seat with taxis, then you will find them below. Keep your kids safe and avoid fines.

Let’s get started already!




By reading this article you agree that it’s for informational purposes and I can’t be held liable for the best advice ask the appropriate person.


New Hampshire Booster Seat Law


There isn’t a specific law for booster seats in New Hampshire. There are only broad recommendations. Until the age of 7, you will have to provide the appropriate car seats.

Typically the booster seat is used until the child reaches 57”, and after that, they will be using the car seat.

Experts recommend using booster seats until the age of 8. Of course, you need to check the weight and height requirements for your car seat.


New Hampshire Rear-facing Car Seat Law

The law doesn’t specify how long you should keep your child rear-facing only to use the appropriate car seat.

Some states require 1 year while others require 2 years of rear-facing. In my book, the longer, the better because that’s the safest for the little ones.

If you can keep your child rear-facing at least 2 years of age.


New Hampshire Forward-facing Car Seat Law

Currently, there is no law saying that your child has to be this old, or weigh x amount or have x-height, so we have to default to the manufacturer’s guidelines.


New Hampshire Taxi Car Seat Law

In the state of New Hampshire, taxis are exempt from the car seat rule. This is good news. However, I always recommend having a car seat even in a cab or ride-sharing vehicle because you can never know.


When Can My Child Sit in the Front Seat in New Hampshire?

At the moment, there are no laws saying when a child can sit in the front. If we look at expert recommendations, it’s clear that they all agree that the right age for the kids would be 12-13 years old.


New Hampshire Car Seat Laws at a Glance

Here’s the entire law in one place:

Car Seat Law (RSA 265:107-a)

Law: According to the law, if you have kids under the age of 7 or they are shorter than 57 inches, then they should be in a federally approved restraint system (approved child restraint).

  • The second paragraph says that if a child up to 18 years old is not in child restraints, then they have to use the seat belt.

Location in car: There are no specifications on where a child can or can’t sit, so it’s up to the parent to decide which is safe.

Taxi: Taxis in the state of New Hampshire are exempt from the use of car seats. However, I highly recommend using one because accidents are unpredictable.

RideSafer legal: Yes. The Ride Safer travel vest qualifies for children who are at least age 3 and 30 pounds.

Fines: $50 for first offense

Seat Belt Law:

  • Currently, New Hampshire is the only state where the seat belt is not mandatory. The only exception would be for kids under the age of 18. If this is the case and they are not in a car seat, they have to use the seat belt.


What is the law concerning Leaving kids in the Car in New Hampshire?

There’s no law currently active that would prohibit a child from staying unattended in the car.

Is it Illegal to Smoke in a Car with a Child in New Hampshire?

Currently, there’s no law banning smoking while transporting kids. However, in 2019 there was a bill that got rejected that would’ve banned smoking if there were kids under the age of 16.

Also, do keep in mind that second-hand smoking is known to cause disease, so it’s better to hold off smoking while driving.


Conclusions on New Hampshire Car Seat Laws

We have reached the end of this article. I’ve done my best to simplify the laws so anybody can understand them.

I hope you have found the answers you’ve been looking for. If I’ve missed something or you have questions reach out to me, and I will do my best to help you out.

Maybe you can help me out by sharing this post so other parents can know exactly how to keep their kids safe and avoid fines in the process. Thank You!


Before hitting the road to Massachusetts here are the up to date car seat laws

Having a child on board means that you are responsible for their safety so check out the latest Massachusetts car seat laws (ma car seat laws) so you know what to do.

Related: Car seat laws Maine including Maine booster seat laws


Frequently Asked Questions:

What is the law for car seats in NH?

In NH the car seat law is as follows all children below the age of 7 or less than 57” have to be secured in the appropriate safety car seat. Children above the age of 7 and below age 18 have to use the seat belt.

When can a child stop using a booster seat in NH?

In NH, the children can stop using a booster seat when they reach 7 years, or they are taller than 57”.

When can a child be forward-facing in NH?

There’s no law when a child can be in a forward facing car seat in NH. So, in this case, you have to default to the manufacturer’s recommendations.

When can a child go without a car seat or booster?

The law changes from state to state however, when a child reaches the age of 12-13, then they can go without a booster seat.

There’s is no law governing the age of the child in a booster seat in NH. However there’s a law that says that until the age of 7 the appropriate car seat has to be used. While experts recommend 8 years of age. Also check nh booster seat laws and booster seat age new hampshire.

How can I secure my 7 year old child?

When your child reaches 7 years old you can use the either a seat belt or the shoulder belt (safety belt) to secure them. Typically by this age kids have outgrown the child safety seats (child safety seat) so the safety belts come into play. If you feel that your child is not getting the sufficient protection from safety belts then you can still use the child safety seats.

What do the new hampshire car seat laws say about convertible car seat use?

According to the new hampshire car seat laws (new hampshire law) there’s no specifics mentioned about a convertible car seat. The new hampshire law states that the appropriate child safety seat has to be used. If your planning to get a new car seat then if your child is under 2 years old go with a convertible for your motor vehicle.

What state has the strictest car seat laws?

The state of Ohio has the strictest car laws in the USA.

Why does New Hampshire have no seat belt law?

New Hampshire is the only state that doesn’t mandates the use of seat belts above the age of 18. Recently in 2009 there was a seat belt bill presented in the House of Representatives  but it never made it through the legislature.

What’s the New Hampshire seat belt law in 2023?

The NH seat belt law in 2023 says that all passengers below the age of 18 have to use the seat belt or the appropriate car seat and above 18 it’s not mandatory.

Last Updated on November 7, 2023 by Brian Beasley

Written by Linda Reid

Hey there, I'm Linda, a mom of three cool kids. I've tried so many car seats, you could call me a "Car Seat Detective." Searching for the perfect car seat can feel like finding a needle in a haystack, but don't worry! I've committed to researching and reviewing car seats that are super safe, cozy, and great for growing kids. Together, we'll find the perfect car seat that keeps your child safe and cozy, and makes you feel like a super-parent!