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Critical Things You Need to Know About Driver’s License Points

yellow road sign that reads DMV

You may have forgotten all about driver’s license points if you haven’t received a ticket in a long time. You might not even know about them at all if you are a new driver. Either way, it is essential to know about driver’s license points, considering that too many of them can have severe consequences.

What are Driver’s License Points?

The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) applies driver’s license points to a driver’s record as a penalty. Usually between 2 and 4 points are assigned if a person receives (or the court finds them guilty of) a moving traffic violation. But keep in mind that driving license codes differ from state to state, so it is important to check the driver’s license points system for the state where you live.

License points are only assigned for moving violations. This means that the DMV does NOT apply them for non-moving offenses. The number of points one receives depends on the type of violation committed. For example, license points for speeding will be different from those for an illegal lane change.

The maximum number of driver’s license points a person can receive is 12. After that, the DMV can take action. If a driver gets 12 points within 12 months, they risk losing their driving privileges for up to 6 months. Many states offer a diversion program for drivers with only 3 to 11 driver’s license points. This usually entails taking a DMV traffic safety course. Upon completion of the course, the driving license points removal process begins.

Driving Violations Will Remain on Your Permanent Record 

If a person moves out of state, the new state’s DMV still sees it. But if a driver does not receive any more driver’s license points after 12 months, the DMV will remove the applicable number of points. It is important to remember that some offenses increase points quicker than others. For example, reckless driving is a more serious offense and will result in 8 points. 

Additional Consequences

police officer checking drivers license points

The loss of driving privileges is a serious risk, but it’s not the only one involved for accruing too many driver’s license points. Accumulating too many points could increase your car insurance rate. Your provider could even drop you as a client. It depends on the specific offense, but typically driver’s license points won’t have a direct effect on insurance rates.

If a person is convicted (or admits to) multiple moving offenses, it will become a permanent part of their driving record and insurance history. This means that at the time of policy renewal, or when switching insurance companies, there is no guarantee that the insurance company will offer coverage.

Driving License Points Removal

If a driver does not get any more license points within 12 months, the DMV will start reducing the overall count. After this, drivers can ask about attending defensive driving courses in order to have points reduced or even removed. Again, it is essential to remember that driving license codes are different in every state.  

Another option is to hire an attorney who specializes in the driving license point removal process. This option, of course, can be very costly. However, sometimes the cost of legal assistance is worth the risk of losing driving privileges for six months or longer.

Finding Quality Insurance

Some insurance companies are very selective and discriminate against drivers who have driver’s license points on their record. If you have points on your record but need quality, affordable insurance coverage, USAgencies can help. Start your free car insurance quote online or over the phone today.