Answer: Yes and no, depends on the state.
In most cases, it’s legal to sleep in your car in areas such as:
- Rest stops
- Truck stops
- Your own private property
- Other private property when you have. permission
Some general rules that apply to sleeping in your car.
- Don’t sleep while driving. Yes, this means you, Tesla full self-driving car owners. At least in 2023, this is not legal.
- You are not drunk or under drug intoxication. Unless you are interested in getting a DUI, which yes can apply to people even if they aren’t currently driving.
- No sleeping while the car keys are in the ignition.
- You don’t park on private property unless authorized.
- You are not doing anything suspicious. Like staking a joint out so you can rob it.
Here are some specific laws by state.
|State||Overnight parking at rest stops?||Sleeping in car laws|
|Alabama||No||No parking on highways. You can be arrested for having control of a vehicle while intoxicated, even if the car isn’t moving. Banned in some cities.|
|Alaska||Laws do not specify||Parking and sleeping in car laws vary by city|
|Arizona||Yes||Varies by city|
|Arkansas||Yes, for safety purposes||Varies by city|
|California||8-hour limit at rest stops||Varies by city|
|Colorado||No||Varies by city|
|Connecticut||No||Varies by city|
|Delaware||4-hour limit||Varies by city|
|Florida||3-hour limit||Some cities or counties ban sleeping in cars entirely.|
|Georgia||No||Varies by city|
|Iowa||One night only allowed under special circumstances, such as emergencies|
|Kansas||One night only|
|New Hampshire||4-hour limit|
|New Mexico||24-hour limit|
|New York||3-hour limit|
|North Carolina||4-hour limit|
|South Dakota||4-hour limit|
|Utah||Not allowed overnight, extended stays are allowed at the police’s discretion|
|Wyoming||Yes, for those who need rest to drive safely|
In general, it is legal to sleep in your car in most places, but there are some exceptions and local ordinances that you should be aware of. Here are a few things to consider:
- Parking laws: It is generally legal to park your car on a public street or in a designated parking lot for a short period of time. However, you should check local parking laws to make sure you are not violating any regulations, such as parking overnight in a residential area or parking in a spot designated for handicapped individuals.
- Public safety: It is generally safe to sleep in your car as long as you are in a secure location, such as a well-lit parking lot. However, you should exercise caution and be aware of your surroundings. It is generally not a good idea to sleep in your car in an area known to be a crime zone. But if I have to tell you that, you probably can’t read so this message isn’t for you. Maybe tell your dumbass cousin who can’t read.
- Local laws: Some cities and towns have laws that prohibit or restrict sleeping in your car. Do some research and look up the local laws to make sure you are not breaking the law by sleeping in your car.