TEXAS — Parents know it’s an awful feeling to hear their kid crying in their car seat, and it can be tempting to free them from their restraints in exchange for a bit of peace and quiet. Or maybe you’ve got four kids, and only space for three in the backseat.
No matter the situation, Texas law always prohibits a child from sitting in a driver’s lap. A child is never allowed to sit in a driver’s lap while a motor vehicle is in operation.
In Texas, the law also states that every individual passenger in a vehicle on Texas roads must use a seat belt in a moving vehicle. The penalty for adults violating this law is a fine of around $200, plus court costs.
In addition to being banned from the driver’s lap, Texas law also requires that all children younger than eight years old, unless they are taller than 4 feet 9 inches tall, be secured in a child safety seat whenever they ride in a vehicle.
Older children who have outgrown a booster seat must be buckled with a seat belt. If they are not in a car seat, it could lead to a misdemeanor offense and could result in a penalty of up to $250, plus court costs.