Are You Using the Right Car Seat for Your Child?

by Matthew Willens on Sep. 16, 2015

Accident & Injury Car Accident Accident & Injury  Personal Injury Accident & Injury  Wrongful Death 

Summary: Using the correct safety restraint system while traveling with your children could save their life.

The Illinois Child Passenger Protection Act (CPPA) requires that parents make sure their children ages eight years of age and younger use the right safety restraint system while traveling in a car. Parents often ask whether their children need to be secured facing forward or backward in the car seat. Additional questions asked by parents are:

  • When can I turn the car seat to face forward?
  • At what stage can I transfer my child from a car seat to a booster seat?

12-Months Old and Younger

Children less than 12-months-old who weigh less than 20 pounds must be placed in an infant car seat facing the rear end of the car. Parents also need to follow some additional rules when it comes to installing the infant car seat. In general, you should try and keep your baby in a rear-facing seat as long as possible. This could be difficult in situations where you are driving the car and you are the only adult in the car. As your baby is facing away from you, it may find it difficult to see his or her face while driving.

A wide variety of products that help you to see your baby’s face through a mirror while driving are available online. Most of these items are easy to install and do not cost much. Once you install a rear-facing infant seat in your car, call your local fire department for an inspection. They will confirm whether you have installed the infant seat properly.

One Year Old - Four Years Old

If possible, continue using the rear-facing infant seat until your baby reaches two years of age. After that, you may be allowed to change the seat to front facing. Call your local fire department to confirm whether it is the right time to use a forward facing infant seat, based on the age and weight of your baby. Under The Child Passenger Protection Act, children between two years and four years of age are allowed to sit in a forward-facing seat with a harness system.

Car Accidents with Child Passengers

If you are involved in an auto accident while driving your car with your kids in it, contact an Illinois accident lawyer from Willens Law Offices to protect your legal rights. Call us at (312) 957-4166.

Legal Articles Additional Disclaimer is not a law firm and does not offer legal advice. Content posted on is the sole responsibility of the person from whom such content originated and is not reviewed or commented on by The application of law to any set of facts is a highly specialized skill, practiced by lawyers and often dependent on jurisdiction. Content on the site of a legal nature may or may not be accurate for a particular state or jurisdiction and may largely depend on specific circumstances surrounding individual cases, which may or may not be consistent with your circumstances or may no longer be up-to-date to the extent that laws have changed since posting. Legal articles therefore are for review as general research and for use in helping to gauge a lawyer's expertise on a matter. If you are seeking specific legal advice, recommends that you contact a lawyer to review your specific issues. See's full Terms of Use for more information.