The law relating to car seats and children


If you have a car and have children travelling in that vehicle, you may require a car seat. Child law has been enacted by the government in 2006 in relation to this matter, and as a driver you are responsible for ensuring all children under the age of 14 wear a seat belt.

In relation to the use of a car seat, child law states that the following, if travelling in cars (front or rear seats), vans and other goods vehicles must wear the correct child restraint for their age: 

  • All children up to 135cm tall, or the age of 12 - whichever comes first

There are very few exceptions to this rule. Tourists who come to the UK on holiday must also comply with the rules. Some of the limited exceptions to the rules are: 

  • When a child is travelling in a licensed private hire vehicle (e.g. a black cab) 
  • Unexpected short journeys that are necessary
  • Older vehicles which have no rear seat belts

You should note that the above exceptions may not apply in all circumstances; rather it depends on the case. The safest option is to use a car seat. Child law does impose penalties for non-compliance with the car seat rules. These penalties include fines. If you wish to contest a fine for non-compliance with car seat regulations, you should contact a solicitor as soon as possible. They may be able to help you have the fine rescinded.

If you would like to obtain legal advice and information on the law in relation to car seats, Caven can put you in touch with a local specialist family / child law solicitor free of charge. So, if you have any questions or would like our help in finding local family / child law solicitors please call us on 08001 221 2299 or complete the web-form above. 

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