What are the New Mexico Car Seat Laws?


Welcome to the New Mexico Car Seat Law Explained in Simple, Plain English!


You have just found the perfect place to find out everything there’s about car seat laws in the state of New Mexico.


I’m a mother of 3, and it’s my duty to keep them safe on the road. This is why I’m always looking for news about car seats. Plus, in my previous life, I was a paralegal, so I know how to understand those dry and stuffy law texts.

This is why I’ve decided to put together this simple and to-the-point article to bring any parent (even the most sleep-deprived) up to speed regarding car seats.

No matter if you’re looking for booster seat law or what to do in taxis, or rear-forward facing positions, I have the answer for that.

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 Mexico Booster Seat Law


The booster seat law in New Mexico says that any child in the age range of 5-7 and weighing less than 60 pounds should be in a booster seat.

However, it’s a good idea to keep your child in a booster seat as long as they can comfortably wear the seat belt.


New Mexico Rear-facing Car Seat Law

According to this law, all babies under the age of 1 have to be in a rear-facing car seat. Also, they can use this car seat until they have outgrown it.

The rear-facing car seat has to be installed in the back row. Just in case you don’t have a back row, then you have to deactivate the airbag, and then you can use the front seat.

If you want to be extra safe, then you can keep your child rear-facing until the age of 2.


New Mexico Forward-facing Car Seat Law

Kids aged 1 and 5 would be allowed to use a forward-facing car seat if they meet the height and weight requirements.

You don’t need to hurry with the upgrade. Make sure your child has outgrown their current seat and then move them to a new one.


New Mexico Taxi Car Seat Law

In New Mexico, there are no laws exempting taxies or ride-sharing companies from the car seat law. This means that you will have to have a car seat or arrange one ahead of time for your child.


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

There’s no law mentioning when a child can sit in the front in New Mexico. Now, if we go with an expert’s advice, then the age of 13 seems to be the most appropriate.


New Mexico Car Seat Laws at a Glance

Here’s the entire car seat law in one place:

Car Seat Law (66-7-369)

Law: The law states that all kids under the age of 18 should either use the seat belt or the appropriate child safety car seat the following way.

  • If you have a child under the age of 1, then they have to sit in rear-facing on the back seat, and in case there’s no back row, then they can sit in the front if the passenger side air bag is deactivated.
  • Suppose you have a child in the 1 and 4 years age bracket weighing less than 40 pounds, then they have to be secured with the appropriate child safety seat that’s federally approved.
  • If you have kids who are 5 to 6 years old or they weigh less than 60 pounds, you have to use either a booster car seat or the appropriate federally approved car seat.
  • Suppose your child is between 7 and 12 years old, then it’s allowed to use the car seat belt.

Also, you can use the seat belt if your child passes the 5 step test:

  • Shoulder belt crosses between the neck and shoulder
  • Lower back is against the vehicle seat
  • Lap belt stays on the upper thighs across the hip bones
  • The knees bend at the end of the seat
  • The child can ride like this for the entire ride

Location in car: Only children under the age of 1 should be in the back seat facing the rear, and if there’s no back row, then the airbag must be deactivated.

Taxi: In the state of New Mexico, taxis are not exempt from the car seat rules, so you either bring your own car seat or arrange it ahead of time with the company. Also, ride-sharing companies have to follow these rules.

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

Fines: $25

Seat Belt Law

  • Law:  According to the law, all passengers have to wear a seat belt
  • Fine: $25
  • RVs: The RVs have to follow the same rule as above, meaning all passengers have to use the seat belt, and in case for kids, they have to use the appropriate child restraint.


What is the law concerning Leaving kids in the Car in New Mexico

There’s no law against leaving a child unattended however it’s not the safest choice. Accidents do happen, so it’s a good idea to have your child with you or have an older child there.


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

Yes, a law forbids smoking in the car while transporting kids.


Conclusions on New Mexico Car Seat Laws

We have reached the end of this article. I hope you have found the answer you’ve been looking for. I’ve done my best to cover everything there is about car seat laws.

Just in case I’ve missed out on something or you have questions reach out to me, and I will do my best to see how I can help you.

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!


If you’re going to Arizona here’s what you need to know about car seat laws

The Arizona car seat laws are no joke so it’s a good idea to know them before you start your journey or you risk fines or worse.


Are you taking your kids to Texas here’s how you keep them safe on the road

Let it be an infant, toddler, or young adult the Texas car seat laws apply to all of them. You can read them here in an easy to understand fashion.


Frequently Asked Questions:

What is the car seat law in New Mexico?

Currently, the New Mexico car laws state that all kids until the age of 7 have to use a car seat. Only the age range of 7-12 would be exempt from the car seat if the seat belt fits and provides adequate protection.

At what age can a child sit in the front seat in New Mexico?

There’s no law against having a child sitting in the front. However, if you have to make then sure you disable the airbag for rear-facing seats or wait until the age of 12-13 because experts recommend that age for sitting in the front.

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

In the state of New Mexico, a child can go without a booster from the age of 7 to 12 and above if the car seat belt fits and provides the necessary safety.

When can a  child sit in the front?

If you have a child over 1 years old they can sit in the front. However if they are under 1 year old they should be in the back seat. If that’s not available then they can use the front seat if the passenger side air bag  is disabled.

How long should a child remain rear facing by new mexico law  (car seat laws)?

According to new mexico law (car seat laws) a should stay rear facing until the age of 1. However it’s safer to keep them in rear facing for a longer period typically until age 2.

Who is a child passenger safety technician and what can they do?

A child passenger safety technician is a certified professional who can help you pick the right car seats like booster seats. Also they can explain the new mexico law.  They can do a car seat inspection. They can show you how to properly install booster seats and car seats. They can show you when you can transition from booster seats  to a lap belt or seat belts  restrain. The seat belts is the final one.


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!