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LATCH System

What is the LATCH System for Child Car Seats?


USA vehicles manufactured after September 1, 2002, are required to have the LATCH system--Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children. The system standardizes the installation of child restraints and lets you mount the restraints without using the car or truck's seat belt system.

Cars, minivans and light trucks are required to have anchors between the seat cushion and seat back and a top tether anchor in at least two rear seat positions. Fasteners on child safety seats latch on to the anchors.

Rear-facing infant safety seats must have lower LATCH attachments. Seats designed to face forward and convertible child safety seats must have lower LATCH attachments and also have a top tether strap. Convertible seats are designed to work in both rear- and forward-facing positions.

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