All You Need To Know About RV Seatbelt Laws

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DoNotPay Explains the RV Seatbelt Laws

Are you planning a road trip across the U.S. in your RV? You should put your and your passengers’ safety first, and complying with each state's RV seatbelt laws is the first and most important step towards that. This article will tell you all about different motorhome seatbelt and safety seat regulations by state—both for adults and children.

RV Seatbelt Laws by State

Some states require only people in front seats to wear seatbelts, while others make sure that the passengers in the back are also buckled up. You can consult the table below to check the rules and regulations for each state in the U.S.:

StateMust Wear a Seatbelt in RV
AlabamaPassengers in the front
Alaska, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont, Washington, and WyomingEveryone
  • The driver and passengers in the front
  • Children under 15 in the back
  • The driver and occupants in the front seat
  • Passengers under 16 in the back
  • The driver and the passenger in the front seat
  • Backseat passengers who are under 18
  • The driver and the passenger in the front
  • Occupants under 18 in the back
IdahoEveryone in the RV must buckle up if the vehicle doesn’t weigh over 8,000 pounds
IllinoisEvery occupant of a motorhome under 15
IndianaThe driver and front-seat occupants
  • The driver and the passenger in the front seat
  • Children under 14
  • Everyone in the front
  • Children under 12 in the back
  • Everyone in the front
  • Children in the back
  • Front-seat occupants
  • Children under 15 in the back
  • All occupants in the front
  • Children who are ten years old or younger
  • Front-seat occupants
  • Kids under ten in the back
  • Front-seat occupants
  • Children under 15
  • Front-seat occupants
  • Backseat occupants under 18
NevadaEveryone, unless the motorhome is traveling less than 15 miles per hour
New HampshireAll passengers, unless the RV is a 1968 or older model
New JerseyFront-seat occupants under 18
New York
  • All passengers in the front
  • Children under 15 in the back
North Carolina
  • Everyone in the front
  • Occupants under 16 in the back
North Dakota
  • All occupants in the front
  • Kids under 17 in the back
OhioFront-seat occupants
  • The driver and front-seat passengers
  • Passengers who are 12 or younger
  • The driver and front-seat occupants
  • Passengers in the back under 18
South Dakota
  • All front-seat occupants
  • Children under 18 in the back
  • Front-seat occupants
  • Backseat passengers under 16
  • The driver and front-seat passengers
  • Backseat occupants who are 17 or younger
  • The driver and front-seat passengers
  • Kids under 16 in the back
West Virginia
  • Everyone in the front
  • Children in the back who are 17 or younger
  • The driver and passengers in the front
  • Children in the back seat who are 15 or under

Children Seatbelt and Safety Seat Regulations

Children seatbelt laws also differ from one state to another. Categories by which they are mostly determined are the age and weight of a child. Most states require drivers to install safety seats according to the manufacturer’s instructions and place them in a forward-facing position.

Can You Sleep in Your RV if You Have a Seatbelt On?

Many states forbid sleeping in a bed in an RV, but you can sleep in a passenger seat if you’re secured by a seatbelt.

Some states allow sleeping in beds, but that’s highly inadvisable as it’s dangerous in the event of a car crash.

What if You Get a Ticket for Not Wearing a Seatbelt?

Seatbelt laws differ from one state to another, but if you violate them, the consequences you might face are usually the same and include:

In some states, if you don’t pay your fine, you might have to go to court or even end up in jail. Luckily, you can try to get your ticket overturned. Here's how you can dispute your fine:

  1. Show reasonable doubt—If you choose to argue on the basis of reasonable doubt, you will most likely claim that the police officer who pulled you over made a mistake. There are plenty of excuses you can use, such as:
    1. You unbuckled your seatbelt briefly to reach for something
    2. The color of your seatbelt was the same as your clothes
    3. You were wearing a seatbelt when the police officer pulled you over, but then you unbuckled it once you stopped your car
  2. Take a due diligence defense—By using this argument, you are claiming that you had a valid reason for not wearing a seatbelt. You can say that you:
    1. Have a medical condition that prevents you from being restrained
    2. Were driving in reverse
    3. Had an emergency

Many people take the easy way out and pay the ticket, even if it’s costly. If you need a fast and affordable way to create a strong appeal letter, you should .

How To Dispute a Seatbelt Citation With DoNotPay

Avoiding the complicated process of disputing a seatbelt ticket is possible with the world’s first AI Consumer Champion—DoNotPay. Whether you made the offense in a state where it's considered a moving violation or not, DoNotPay can help you!

To get a fully personalized appeal letter, you should follow these steps:

  1. and open our Seatbelt Ticket product
  2. Upload a photo of your ticket
  3. Provide information about the event, such as who got the ticket
  4. Tell us which argument you’d like to use

After you complete the steps, DoNoPay will generate a customized appeal letter and mail it to the authorities in charge.

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