Dashcam Regulations In Each State
Navigating the rules about dashcams can be tricky, especially when it comes to the differences in state laws. As you’ll see, some states have very specific guidelines while others are quite open. As a rule of thumb, always make sure that a dashcam does not obstruct the driver’s view. While we have tried to keep this guide brief and accurate, this does not represent legal advice.
In Alabama, a suction-mounted dashcam can’t be placed on the windshield because it obstructs the driver’s view. However, mounting a dashcam on the dashboard would be considered legal.
According to Alaska Statute 13.04.225, a dashcam may be installed and used in your vehicle as long as it doesn’t obstruct the driver’s view and is smaller than 5 or 7 inches on one side, depending on which side of the car it is mounted on.
According to Arizona dash cam laws, any objects or materials on the windshield that obstruct a driver’s clear view through the windshield are not allowed. Dashcams cannot be larger than 5 inches by 5 inches if placed on the left side of car windows and cannot be larger than 7 inches by 7 inches if placed on the right side of car windows.
In Arkansas, it is legal to have a dashboard camera as long as the camera is placed behind a rearview mirror and does not obstruct the driver’s line of view. If it blocks or hinders the full view of the driver, the dashcam becomes illegal.
California law says that dashboard cameras, which are video event recorders, do not have to comply with state laws about anything blocking the windshield. Dashboard cameras “may be mounted in a 7-inch square in the lower corner of the windshield farthest removed from the driver, in a 5-inch square in the lower corner of the windshield nearest the driver.
Colorado prohibits obstructing the driver’s view, which means that it is legal to place a dashcam behind the rearview mirror or on the dashboard. Colorado also specifies that a dashcam can’t be mirrored or metallic since reflective surfaces could momentarily blind the driver in certain lighting conditions.
Connecticut prohibits obstructing the windshield in any way with non-transparent materials, including dash cameras. To be safe, mount your dashcam on the dashboard out of sight.
Delaware’s law reads, “No person shall drive any vehicle upon a highway with any sign, poster or other non-transparent material upon the front windshield, side wings or side or rear window of such motor vehicle.” Therefore it is probably best if dashcams are mounted on the dashboard.
District of Columbia
Dashcams are legal in the District of Columbia, but not if mounted on your windshield. Drivers must get consent from passengers before recording audio in the car. Mount a dashcam on your dashboard and attach a sticker or sign that it records audio to be safe.
Florida state law does not prohibit the use of a dashboard camera, but it makes clear that objects placed on windshields can obstruct the driver’s view.
Dashboard cameras are legal in Georgia and drivers are allowed to record video and audio, but installing a dashcam on the windshield is against the law because it obstructs the view.
In Hawaii, drivers can legally install a dashcam up to five inches square on the top or bottom corners of the windshield. Drivers can also install a non-obstructive dashcam in more discreet locations like above the dashboard or back window.
Dashcams are prohibited by law in Idaho from obstructing the driver’s view. Since they fall under the category of “non-transparent material,” dashcams may only be installed on the dashboard surface instead of as part of the windshield glass.
Vehicle laws in Illinois do not explicitly mention dashcams or other recording devices. However, drivers can install dash cams provided that it does not obstruct the driver’s view. The video screen cannot be larger than 5-inches when installed on the windshield and needs to be placed on the left side of the car dashboard.
All drivers in Indiana are required to follow dashcam installation laws. A dashcam must be no larger than 4 inches and placed in the bottom corner on the passenger side of the windshield.
Iowa law doesn’t mention dashcams specifically. As long as the driver can see clearly, dashcams are legal. The law states, “A person shall not drive a motor vehicle equipped with a windshield, side wings, or side or rear windows which do not permit clear vision.”
Drivers in Kansas can legally install dashcams on their dashboard or windshield so long as they do not obstruct the driver’s field of vision.
In Kentucky, there are no laws prohibiting or limiting a dashcam’s placement. As long as the dashcam is placed reasonably and doesn’t cover or obstruct the driver’s vision, it’s legal.
Louisiana law doesn’t explicitly mention dashcams, but it states that “no person may operate a motor vehicle with any object or material that obstructs or reduces the driver’s clear view through the windshield.” Therefore, dashcams are allowed in Louisiana as long as they’re attached to the dashboard and not the windshield.
In Maine, dashcams can be placed on windshields and dashboards so long as they don’t obstruct the vehicle driver’s vision. This exemption is important because it allows for trucks to use dashcams without violating the law.
In Maryland, you must place your dashcam above the AS-1 line or higher than 5 inches below the top of the windshield. You can also place your dashcam within a 7-inch square in the bottom corner of the windshield.
In Massachusetts, a dashcam is not allowed to be placed on the windshield because it counts as “non-transparent material.” They should be attached to the dashboard instead and a side dashcam can go on the side window if its total visible light reflectance is not more than 35%.
Drivers in Michigan are not allowed to place dash cameras on their windshields. Law does not apply to trucks over 10,000 pounds or those transporting hazardous materials.
A mounted dashboard camera is considered legal and complies with the Minnesota drivers license manual if it is placed immediately behind, slightly above or slightly below a rearview mirror.
Mississippians are not allowed to obstruct their view while driving. Similarly, there is no law against using a dashcam so long as the camera is mounted on the dashboard.
Missouri allows for dashcam installation because there is no mention of obstructions to the driver’s view. You can install it behind the rearview mirror or elsewhere in your windshield.
Drivers in Montana are required to have a clear view through their windshields. They should install their dashcams on the dashboard instead of the windshield because objects can obstruct, obscure, and impair the driver’s view if they are placed on the windshield.
While dashboard cameras are allowed in Nebraska, drivers aren’t allowed to install them on the windshield. They may choose to install them only on their dashboards, and it is legal so long as other cab passengers give permission before audio is recorded.
Nevada drivers can install a dashcam in the lower corner of the windshield farthest removed from the driver, but not elsewhere on the windshield. You can also install it on your dashboard without restriction.
New Hampshire law prohibits drivers from placing a front-facing dash cam on their car windshield. However, there is an exception that allows drivers to use rear view cams in addition to any cameras on the interior of the vehicle, so cameras mounted to dashboards are acceptable.
A rule in New Jersey does not allow drivers to have any non-transparent objects on the front windshield and on either the driver or passenger side window. To install a dashcam, it should be installed near the windshield, but on the passenger side dashboard of vehicles instead.
New Mexico’s dashboard camera law states that “No person shall drive any motor vehicle with any…non-transparent material upon or in the front windshield, windows to the immediate right and left of the driver. Drivers should only install dashcams on a car’s dashboard and not on its windshield.
Under New York bill A5132, a driver is eligible for a 5% premium discount if they have an operating dashcam. The dashboard camera must not be in the windshield.
North Carolina does not mention dashboard cameras or windshield obstruction in its motor vehicle laws, but drivers should consider safety when deciding where to place a dashcam.
North Dakota’s law states that drivers are not allowed to install dashcams on their windshields. Drivers must have all windows cleared from any obstruction, including stickers, dashcams and posters. The best place for a dashcam in North Dakota is on the dashboard.
Ohio law does not allow drivers to install a dashboard-mounted camera on their windshield. As long as the device is mounted on the dashboard or somewhere in the car, it is legal to record video and audio in the cab.
Oklahoma law prohibits drivers from installing dashcams on the windshield, but they can install cameras near the dashboard as long as they don’t obscure any part of the driver’s vision.
In Oregon, it is illegal to place a dashcam on the windshield or other windows of the car. Drivers can only mount them on their dashboard and may record audio and video in a continuous loop.
Drivers in Pennsylvania are prohibited from mounting a dashcam on their windshield. The law states that drivers should be able to fully view the highway through their entire windshield. There are no restrictions on having a dashcam mounted by your dashboard.
In Rhode Island, it is legal to install a dashcam on the dashboard. A driver cannot mount the camera on their windshield as long as recording doesn’t obstruct their view.
South Carolina only allows drivers to mount video cameras on the dashboard, not any windows. The driver should be able to see out of every window without straining.
South Dakota law prohibits dashcams mounted on the front windshield and side windows to obstruct or limit a driver’s vision. Drivers are allowed to mount dash cams on the dashboard. Video recording with audio is also permitted but needs notification/permission of those inside the vehicle.
Driving in Tennessee requires that the driver’s view is unobstructed. Drivers cannot mount dashcams or GPS systems on the front windshield of the vehicle. They can legally install a dashcam on the dashboard without restriction.
In Texas, drivers are prohibited from taking action that obstructs or reduces the driver’s clear view. Dashcams can be used in Texas but they cannot adhere to windshields.
Utah drivers are allowed to mount dashboard cameras on the windshield as long as the dashcam is along the top of the windshield and doesn’t extend down further than 4 inches or in the lower-left corner and doesn’t extend out more than 4 inches. Drivers can also install cameras on their back windows without penalty.
Vermont law allows drivers to place dashcams in the lower right-hand windshield area as long as the device is less than 4 inches tall and 12 inches long. In the upper left-hand corner of the windshield, the devices can be 2 inches high and 2 1/2 inches long.
A driver in Virginia is allowed to place a dashcam on the dashboard as long as it has an unobstructed view of the road.
Drivers in Washington are allowed to have a dashboard camera, but it should not be mounted on the windshield.
Drivers in West Virginia are not allowed to have non-transparent materials mounted on the front windshield. Installing a dashcam on the dashboard out of the driver’s line of sight is recommended for passengers’ safety.
Wisconsin allows drivers to legally install dashboard cameras, but there are several restrictions. For example, the camera must be mounted behind the rearview mirror and cannot block the area cleaned by the windshield wipers or obstruct the driver’s view of objects in front of them.
Wyoming has no specific law that covers using a dashcam, but they do have laws in place to prevent obstructing the windshield.
In all U.S. states, dashboard cameras are legal. The majority of the states do not allow a driver to mount a dashcam on the windshield, but all of them allow a driver to mount one on the dashboard. For more information about your state’s dashcam laws, check with the State Patrol.
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