Car seats are an essential part of keeping children safe while in a vehicle. Michigan has specific laws regarding the use of car seats for infants, toddlers, and children. Understanding the laws is essential for all parents and caregivers to ensure that children are safe while traveling. In this article, we discuss the Michigan car seat laws and everything you need to know about them.

What are the Michigan Car Seat Laws?

The Michigan car seat laws specify the type of car seat required based on the age, weight, and height of a child. The law requires that all children under the age of eight, or under 4 feet 9 inches in height, use a car seat or a booster seat when traveling in a vehicle. Additionally, children under 4 years of age must be in a rear-facing car seat unless they weigh more than 40 pounds or are taller than 40 inches.

What Type of Car Seat Should I Use?

The type of car seat you use depends on the age, weight, and height of your child. Here are the guidelines for selecting the correct car seat:

  • Infants who are under 1 year old and under 22 pounds MUST be in a rear-facing infant seat.
  • Toddlers who are 1 year old or older and weigh between 22-40 pounds should be in a rear-facing convertible seat.
  • Children who are between 4-8 years old or under 4 feet 9 inches tall should be in a booster seat.
  • Children who are 8 years old or older or taller than 4 feet 9 inches can switch to using a regular seat belt.

It’s important to note that car seats must meet federal safety standards to be used in Michigan.

What If I Don’t Follow The Car Seat Laws?

If you don’t follow the Michigan car seat laws, you can be fined. The first offense can result in a fine of up to $75, and subsequent offenses may lead to fines of up to $200. Aside from fines, not following safety laws can put children at risk while traveling in a vehicle.

What Else Should I Know About Michigan Car Seat Laws?

Here are some additional things you need to know about Michigan car seat laws:

  • Michigan’s car seat laws apply to all types of motor vehicles, including cars, trucks, and vans.
  • It’s recommended that children stay in each car seat type for as long as they can within the weight and height limits specified by the manufacturer.
  • It is not recommended to use secondhand or used car seats as they may not meet current safety standards or be expired. All car seats have an expiration date on the manufacturer’s label.


Parents, guardians, and caregivers must follow Michigan’s car seat laws to keep children safe while driving. By choosing an appropriate car seat for a child’s weight and height, you can ensure their safety. Failing to follow the law could lead to serious fines and put children at risk. Always follow the laws and recommendations set by the manufacturer to guarantee that the car seat is used correctly.


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