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License Points: What They Are and Why You Really Don’t Want Them

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Every driver dreads seeing those flashing red and blue lights in their rearview mirror. After pleading and apologizing, you get hit with the even more dreaded traffic citation. There are a lot of negative consequences that come along with traffic tickets, but many drivers instantly see (and focus on) the ticket amount they’re required to pay. This can certainly be an inconvenience, and perhaps even a financial strain. However, this isn’t necessarily the worst thing that comes with getting a traffic citation. Depending on what the ticket was for and any past traffic citations you may have, license points may be your biggest issue.

What Are License Points?

Every traffic violation is tied with a certain number of points. In New Jersey, 2-point violations can include minor violations, such as running a stop sign. U-turn violations would result in three license points, whereas passing in a no passing zone would result in four. Serious violations include illegal racing (five points), passing a stopped school bus (five points), and causing an accident that resulted in personal injury (eight points).

Added Expense

The more points you accumulate, the worse things can get. Even a one-time violation can result in serious consequences if you get a lot of points. If you receive six or more license points within three years in New Jersey, you’ll be required to pay annual surcharges on top of other penalties and court fines. Excessive license points can also cause your car insurance premiums to increase.

Lose Your Privilege to Drive

Receiving an excessive amount of license points can cause your driver’s license to get suspended, or even revoked completely. In New Jersey, you face driver’s license suspension if you accumulate 12 points on your driver’s license. This means that even an accumulation of minor traffic citations can result in losing your privilege to drive if you simply pay the ticket and move on, but receive points.

Did you recently receive a traffic citation? Regardless of whether you feel the ticket was justified, it’s important to reconsider what’s at stake by simply paying the ticket and moving on. It can be tempting, but by just paying the ticket and not fighting it first, you could be getting points on your license. Depending on the offense, this could be a lot of points, which can result in various problems. Contact our traffic citation attorneys today if you recently received a traffic citation.

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