Updated at: 25-03-2022 - By: Lucas

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Many people spend months or even years living in their cars, navigating from place to place so as not to draw notice to themselves.

Even in approved vehicle camping areas, you can safely camp in your car in various U.S. states and localities.

People who live in their cars have often wondered, however: Is it illegal to sleep in your car while parked in a parking lot?

Is it legal to sleep in your car when it is parked in a private parking lot?

Is It Illegal To Sleep In Your Car In A Parking Lot?

Is It Illegal To Sleep In Your Car In Indiana

To begin, keep in mind that each parking lot has its own set of rules and regulations. It’s possible to park overnight in some, but it’s not allowed in others.

There are certain parking garages that allow you to sleep in your car, while others do not.

On the other hand, laws regarding sleeping in your automobile vary from place to place as well as apply under specific circumstances.

Sleeping in a car appears to be illegal in every state. In theory, if you don’t sleep too long in the spot where you’re parked, you should be fine.

In a parking lot, you’d be advised of the rules that apply to the lot as soon as you pull in. If the laws are unclear, you may always ask a security guard if you’re allowed to sleep in your car while it’s parked by phoning them up and explaining the situation.

It’s more secure and convenient to sleep in your car with the assurance that you have the permission of someone in charge of the parking lot.

At least according to what we’ve learned so far, sleeping in your car while it’s parked isn’t prohibited. As long as you’ve found a space where you can park comfortably, you’ll have no problem parking there.

Which Is Safer: Parking Lots or Rest Stops?

There are still Walmarts that allow overnight parking, as well as a number of other options. You should be safe no matter where you park, whether it’s at a Walmart or a business.

You’re not alone if you’re sleeping in your car at Walmart parking lots, where security guards are usually present.

A 24-hour bathroom and other amenities are available at some rest sites in select places, but you are expected to park there for the entire 24 hours.

For a decent night’s sleep, you can spend up to four hours at a rest stop.

When entering a neighborhood, some folks choose a quiet spot to rest their vehicle. However, locals may call the police on you if you park for a long period of time on their street.


As far as I know, it’s not unlawful to sleep in a parking lot. If you’re unsure about whether something is permitted in the parking lot, you should always check with the people in the immediate vicinity (or security).

You are not breaking any laws by sleeping in your vehicle. However, if you’re driving while intoxicated or your vehicle isn’t entirely shut off, you may find yourself facing legal action.

Keep in mind that the people around you may be concerned about your continual appearance while driving if you stop frequently to rest or sleep.