As a parent, you cannot control how other drivers behave when you take your child out for a spin around Miami. However, you can take steps to keep your kid safe in case you get into a car accident. In other words, you can follow the Florida child car seat laws. Not only will you avoid getting in trouble with the police, but you will minimize the chances of injury to your child in the event of a car accident.
Understanding Florida’s Child Car Seat Laws
The Sunshine State’s rules regarding the use of child safety seats are outlined in section 316.613 of the Florida Statutes. This law states that kids who are 5 years of age or younger must use crash-tested, federally approved child restraint devices when traveling in a motor vehicle.
More specifically, this Florida statute explains that children age 0 to 3 must be restrained in a separate carrier or a vehicle manufacturer’s integrated child seat. Meanwhile, 4- and 5-year-old kids can use a separate carrier, an integrated child seat, or a child booster seat.
When kids in Florida reach their 6th birthday, they are no longer required to use a child restraint device. However, they must continue to wear a safety belt.
Here at Lavent Law, PA, in Miami, we are experts on Florida’s child car seat rules. Should you have any questions about them, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.
Types of Child Safety Seats Available to Parents in Florida
With so many options available on the market, it can be tough for parents in Florida to know which one is right for their child. In most instances, however, the right types are as follows:
Rear-Facing Child Car Seats
Children who are younger than 2 years of age should always travel in a rear-facing car seat. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, this device should be placed in the back seat of the vehicle.
Forward-Facing Child Car Seats
When kids outgrow the height and weight limits of their rear-facing seat, they can upgrade to a forward-facing seat. This device should be used in conjunction with a harness and placed in the back seat of the vehicle. Children typically continue to use their forward-facing car seat until they are around 4 years old.
Once children grow out of their forward-facing car seat, they should then graduate to a booster seat. Despite this upgrade, kids should continue to ride in the rear seat of the vehicle.
Under Florida law, kids only need to use their booster seat until they are 6 years old. However, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children should continue to use this device until they are at least 57 inches tall and can comfortably use adult seat belts.
Where Can Florida Parents Get Help Installing Their Child’s Safety Seat?
The Centers for Disease Control and Statistics estimates that 59 percent of all car seats and 20 percent of all booster seats in the United States are installed incorrectly – potentially making them ineffective or even dangerous.
Fortunately, help is available for Florida parents who want to ensure that their child’s seat is fitted properly. All they need to do is visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website and book an appointment with a certified Child Passenger Safety Technician.
Exceptions to Florida’s Child Car Seat Laws
According to section 316.613 of the Florida Statutes, there are some situations in which one does not need to abide by the state’s child car seat laws. Most notably, there are exceptions in place for kids traveling in:
What Are the Consequences of Violating Florida’s Child Car Seat Laws?
Parents and caregivers that violate Florida’s child car seat laws are usually fined $60. They also typically receive 3 points on their driver’s license. In most instances, it is possible to remove those penalty points by attending a car seat safety course that has been approved by the court.
Recovering Compensation for an Injury Caused By a Defective Child Car Seat in Florida
Florida’s child car seat laws were designed to reduce the number of kids who are injured and killed on roads and highways in the Sunshine State each year. So, if you get into a car accident while following those laws, you expect your child to emerge from the incident without any major injuries.
Unfortunately, child car seats don’t always work as well as they should. Manufacturing defects and design flaws frequently cause them to fail to provide kids with the protection they deserve.
If your child sustains a severe injury because a defective car seat failed to keep them protected, you may be entitled to compensation. To claim it, however, you will need the assistance of an experienced personal injury and product liability attorney, like those here at Lavent Law, PA.
How Our Legal Team Can Help You Fight for the Compensation Your Family Deserves
The attorneys here at Lavent Law, PA, in Miami, are committed to fighting tirelessly on behalf of our clients. When you ask us to help you with your child’s defective car seat case, we will:
Provide You with Astute Legal Advice
As you work your way through your defective car seat lawsuit, you will almost certainly need to make a lot of tough decisions. If you act rashly or illogically, you may harm your chances of recovering the financial restitution your family deserves. However, if you can consistently make smart choices, you may be able to increase your odds of receiving a sizable settlement check.
When you work with Lavent Law, PA, you won’t need to make these difficult choices on your own. Our experienced lawyers will be by your side to provide you with astute legal advice and guidance.
Gather Evidence to Help You Prove Your Case
To successfully recover compensation through the legal process, you will most likely need to prove that:
- Your child’s car seat was flawed or defective
- Those flaws or defects caused your child to become injured
- Your child’s injuries are as severe as you claim
The attorneys here at Lavent Law, PA, in Miami, will help you find the evidence you need to prove these points.
Negotiate with the Manufacturer’s Insurance Company
Most defective child car seat lawsuits never make it to court. Instead, they are generally resolved when the plaintiff and defendant agree to a settlement deal.
If you wish to accept such a deal, you would be wise to spend some time negotiating its terms beforehand. The skilled and experienced attorneys here at our law firm would be more than happy to help you do just that.
Would you like to have a Lavent Law, PA, attorney help you with your battle for financial restitution? Then please pick up the phone, give us a call, and set up a free consultation at our Miami law offices today.
What is the Deadline for Filing a Defective Car Seat Compensation Claim in the State of Florida?
The state of Florida has a standard four-year statute of limitations on just about all personal injury and product liability lawsuits. As a result, most people who fracture a bone in a car accident or are burned by a faulty appliance must file suit against the other party within four years of the date that they were injured.
Product liability and personal injury cases involving children typically work a little differently, however. Since kids are not capable of filing a lawsuit, the countdown timer on their statute of limitations does not begin on the day they are injured. Instead, it starts on their 18th birthday – the first day they can legally file a compensation claim.
Of course, the parents of kids who are injured because of defective car seats do not need to wait until their child becomes an adult to begin the legal process. They are free to file suit against the device manufacturer on their child’s behalf at any time before they turn 18.
Are you ready to begin fighting for compensation on behalf of your child? If so, please reach out to the Lavent Law, PA, team today. We have the experience and skill needed to handle your case.
Was Your Child Injured Because of the Car Seat? Contact Lavent Law, PA, Today
When the people of Miami need an attorney to help them file a lawsuit against a negligent manufacturer, they know that there is only one law firm they need to turn to – Lavent Law, PA. If you would like to set up a free consultation with a member of our knowledgeable legal team, just give us a call or contact us online.