Which way should a car seat face?

Kelsey - posted on 03/09/2013 ( 4 moms have responded )

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My ex boyfriend just got into a car accident last Wednesday; he wasn't driving. His girlfriend was. Luckily they didn't have my 10-month old with them. My son would have been severely injured.

Well, today, I went outside to get my son from my ex since today was visitation and my ex had the baby's car seat facing forwards. I told my ex that the baby should be facing backwards since he's not a year yet nor is he forty pounds. I told him that he could get in trouble with the law and he was putting my son's life in danger.

He didn't care and told me I was overreacting and he'll 'take the ticket.' Then he sped out of my driveway like a bat out of hell.

I'm worried for my son's safety. If my son would have been in that car when they crashed head-on with a wrongly used car seat; he could have been killed.

Am I right about the car seat direction? Or am I overracting?

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Kelsey - posted on 03/10/2013

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I tried to get supervised visits when we met for court back in December. My lawyer said that there was a low probability for me to get it unless I could prove otherwise. Even telling my lawyer how my ex has a temper and he's grabbed me a few times, my ex has punched a couple of holes in our old apartment walls, he's thrown two phones, even kicked a chair into the baby's crib. I told my lawyer that my ex sees a smack across the face and holding a child up by the throat as a fit punishment, I told my lawyer about all the child abuse my ex endured as a child; and how my ex doesn't see it as child abuse.

I don't have the funds to talk to my original lawyer; he charges even with phone calls. I'm hoping that the little part in the joint custody agreement will solve this issue. It's just the matter of switching the car seat to the right way. It's not like I'm asking for anything major. A simple five minutes to switch it around.

Then again, my ex couldn't figure out how to adjust the straps on the carrier car seat and was trying to shove my son in a seat two sizes too small. Apparently the baby crying and coughing, wasn't a big worry to him. I had to stop my ex from strapping in the baby and fix the car seat.

I just don't understand how he doesn't have his child's safety in mind; especially since he was the one in the accident.

Dove - posted on 03/09/2013

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If he's breaking a law involving the safety of your child.... that's definitely child endangerment. You really do need to talk to a lawyer too though.

Kelsey - posted on 03/09/2013

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Thank you!

I had looked up the new laws for my state. It's up to 40 pounds and two years in a backwards facing car seat. I don't have the funds to talk to my lawyer, but I do have something in my joint custody agreement about child endangerment and I can refuse his visitation if I feel my child is in danger. I'm wondering if I could do that.

Dove - posted on 03/09/2013

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It's illegal (depending on where you live... every US state to my knowledge is 12 months and 20 pounds) and ridiculously dangerous to have that baby forward facing. Personally, if he won't listen to reason... I'd be talking to my lawyer about only allowing supervised visitations. You are not overreacting at all. It's your son's life on the line here.

If he were at least following the law... you might not be able to take it to court, but I had my son rear facing until 3. It is recommended to try and rear face until at least 2 years of age and better to rear face until the child outgrows the weight and/or height limit of the rear facing seat (not the infant ones.... the ones that rear face til at least 35 pounds... some are 40 or even more).

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