Arizona Driver’s License Point System
Arizona demerit points or driver’s license points, are assigned to each driver’s record by the Arizona Department of Transportation (DOT) as a way of recording traffic violations. When DOT puts points on license records, it uses a specific scale that assigns a certain number of demerit points per traffic violation. “How long do points stay on your license in Arizona?” is a question many drivers may ask. The length of time points will stay on your record will depend on several factors determined by the DOT. The point system in Arizona can impact your auto insurance rates if you accumulate too many of them in a specified time frame. Penalty points are preventable if you follow the tips outlined below. Continue reading to learn more about the Arizona driver point system, what happens when you get points, and whether it is possible to remove points you already have received.
How does Arizona’s point system work?
Arizona speeding ticket points are just one type of demerit point you can earn, as breaking traffic laws result in individual point values. You receive penalty points at a higher rate if you commit a serious violation, such as driving under the influence (DUI). Lower-value demerit points are issued for lesser traffic violations, including basic moving violations. Demerit points for speeding and other violations can add up to a number that comes with serious consequences. You can learn more about Arizona’s demerit point system by downloading our comprehensive guide today.
Examples of Point Values in Arizona
Driving points and their values are determined by the Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) of the Arizona DOT. The Arizona MVD demerit point system issues points according to the seriousness of the traffic violation. Examples of drivers license points in Arizona include:
Driving under the influence (DUI): 8 points
Leaving the scene of an accident: 6 points
Speeding: 3 points
Following too closely: 2 points
Minor moving violations: 2 points
The majority of careless driving points will fall in the two-point demerit range, but the only way to know for sure how many points you earned for a specific violation is to see what the officer wrote on your ticket. Getting points on drivers license records is not the only consequence of breaking traffic laws in Arizona. Each type of traffic violation results in a fine and could involve more serious penalties, including mandatory driving safety classes and possible jail time for serious offenses.
Penalties and Other Consequences for Having Too Many Points
Driving record points are assigned every time you are convicted of a moving traffic violation, or whenever you forfeit bail for the same. If you accumulate a certain number of speeding ticket points or other careless driving points within a 12-month period, you will face potentially serious consequences. If you get too many demerit points for speeding, you may have to pay to attend a traffic survival school (TSS) program approved by the MVD. TSS is different from defensive driving classes in many ways because the program is created for serious traffic offenders and addresses issues that contribute to unsafe driving. TSS is one way to avoid drivers license points from causing your license to be suspended by the MVD. Obtaining too many points on drivers license records is one major reason that driving privileges are suspended in the state of Arizona. If you get too many demerit points on your license and it is suspended, you will not be able to drive for a period determined by the courts and you must complete several steps determined by the demerit point system to get your license back after your suspension term has ended.
Note that driving record points for drivers under age 18 carry heavier consequences and penalties, including for first time offenders in this age group. Every licensed driver who gets driving record points for any reason can face higher auto insurance costs as a result, but the amount will vary between insurance companies. Download our educational guide to learn more about specific Arizona driver point system limits and the consequences of getting too many points over the course of any 12-month period.
Tips for Removing and Avoiding AZ Driver’s License Points
Arizona drivers license points are not easily removed from your driving record, as the state is among the strictest in issuing points and does not provide many opportunities to have them removed from your record. In some cases, minor careless driving points can be kept from appearing on your record to begin with, but this only happens if a judge permits you to attend classes instead of adding points to your record. The best way to avoid penalty points is to avoid breaking the law when you are behind the wheel. Common-sense tactics to avoid driving record points include never driving while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs, paying attention to and obeying traffic signals and signs, and obeying posted speed limits. In addition, the Arizona driver point system is clearly detailed in the latest copy of the AZ driver manual. An easy way to avoid getting penalty points on your driving record is to keep yourself informed of driving laws, as ignorance is never accepted as an excuse for breaking the law.