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How Do License Points Work?

In Florida, once you’ve passed your drivers’ education class and your driving test, your reward is a driver’s license. For those who drive safely, renewing it regularly will be the only concern you have. Traffic violations, however, will assess points against your license, and too many points will cause a suspension of your driving privilege.

The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles uses a point system for driving infractions, but other violations including failure to pay child support can also result in the suspension of your driver’s license. Here’s a closer look at some common driving violations and their point values.

Three-Point Violations

  • Driving too fast for conditions

  • Careless driving

  • Speeding (less than 15 miles over the set limit)

  • Failure to obey a traffic sign

  • Failing to stop at a red light

  • Failure to yield to oncoming traffic

  • Failure to yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian

  • Failure to use a proper child restraint for children still requiring car seats or boosters

  • Improper backing

  • Improper changing of lanes (failing to signal a lane change, for example)

  • Littering

  • Tailgating

  • Cutting off another vehicle

  • Driving with an open container of alcohol

Four-Point Violations

  • Reckless driving

  • Speeding (more than 15 miles over the set limit)

  • Failing to stop for a school bus or passing a school bus

  • Failing to stop at a red light on a one-way street before making a left turn

  • Failing to obey a traffic signal

  • Performing a moving violation that results in a crash

Six-Point Violations

  • Speeding that results in a crash

  • Leaving the scene of an accident without offering insurance or contact information if damage is more than $50

  • Leaving the scene of a crash with an unattended vehicle without providing insurance or contact information

License suspensions

There are several violations – some not driving related – that can result in the immediate suspension of your license, including:

  • Drug or alcohol-related offenses, including DUI

  • Failure to pay child support

  • Failing to pay fines for traffic violations

  • Street racing

Some traffic violations in Florida will require taking a state-approved driving course.

Accruing points can also cause insurance rates to escalate up to 50%.

Teenagers behind the wheel

Teen drivers who are ticketed for unsafe driving practices face stricter penalties, especially if they are still driving with a learner’s permit. A teen driver who is ticketed for a traffic violation while still using a learner’s permit can have their learner’s permit extended for either one year or until they turn 18 years old. If a teen driver with a license earns six points within 12 months of receiving a driver’s license they will have their license restricted for business only for either a year or until they turn 18, which means they can drive to and from work, but not to school or to run errands.

If any more points are earned during the restricted period, the restriction will be extended for 90 days per point. Any driver under the age of 21 who is pulled over with a blood alcohol level of 0.02% or more will have their license suspended for six months. Teens can also have their license suspended for truancy or the possession of cigarettes, cigars or e-cigarettes.

Call a Florida traffic attorney

If you’ve been ticketed for a traffic violation, it’s important to have it handled by a competent traffic lawyer, not only to prevent losing points on your driver’s license, but also to keep your insurance rates from going up. Learn your rights by contacting an experienced traffic court attorney like Malcolm Anthony. Call 904-285-4529 (4LAW).

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