Old Points Never Die, They Just Fade Away
Whether you are trying to lower your car insurance premiums or are applying for a job that will pull your Colorado driving record, you might be wondering, “can I get points off my license in Colorado?” The short answer is that you can’t do anything to remove points for traffic violations from your driver’s license once they have been recorded.
But don’t panic. This does not mean that the points on your record will remain there forever. With the passage of time and a good stretch of driving without getting a ticket, any points you’ve accumulated on your Colorado driver’s license will eventually fade away into irrelevance.
How Colorado’s Points System Works
Colorado, like most states, has a “point system” to keep track of a driver’s record of traffic offenses. Each type of traffic violation is worth a predetermined amount of points. If you rack up too many points in too short a time, you could lose your driving privileges.
All licensed Colorado drivers start out with a “clean slate,” or zero points against their license. However, meeting or exceeding the following point totals over a set period of time will lead to an administrative license suspension hearing before the Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles:
- Adult drivers (over 21 years of age): 12 points in one year or 18 points over two years.
- Drivers between 18-20 years old: nine points over one year, 12 points over 24 consecutive months, or 14 points or more accumulated between ages 18 and 21.
- Drivers under 18 years old: six points over one year, or seven points before turning 18.
Common Traffic Offenses And Their Point Values:
The points Colorado law assigns to a traffic offense roughly correlate to the seriousness of the violation. For example, a DUI or leaving the scene of an accident will get you 12 points all at once, while something much more mundane like failure to signal is worth two.
- Failure to signal: 2 points
- Failure to turn on lights: 2 points
- Operating an unsafe vehicle: 2 points
- Driving through a safety zone: 3 points
- Driving in the wrong lane or direction on a one-way street: 3 points
- Failure to yield right-of-way: 3 points
- Improper turn: 3 points
- Careless driving: 4 points
- Driving on the wrong side of the road: 4 points
- Failure to maintain or show proof of insurance: 4 points
- Failure to observe traffic sign or signal: 4 points
- Failure to yield to an emergency vehicle: 4 points
- Improper passing: 4 points
- Failure to stop for a school bus: 6 points
- Driving while impaired by alcohol (DWAI): 8 points
- Reckless driving: 8 points
- Driving while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs: 12 points
- Eluding or attempting to elude a police officer: 12 points
- Leaving the scene of an accident – 12 points
- Speed contests: 12 points
How many points your speeding ticket will cost you depends on how fast you were going over the posted limit.
- Speeding over the posted speed limit by 5–9 m.p.h.: 1 point
- Speeding over the posted speed limit by 10–19 m.p.h.: 4 points
- Speeding over the posted speed limit by 20–39 m.p.h.: 6 points
- Speeding over the posted speed limit by 40 or more m.p.h.: 12 points
Paying The Fine = Pleading Guilty = Points On Your Record
Most Colorado Springs traffic tickets can be handled without a court appearance by paying the ticket online, by mail, or in person. It can certainly be tempting just to pay the ticket and move on. But paying the fines also means that you are admitting guilt, just as if you were standing in a courtroom before a judge. This also means accepting the points on your record. Not only will too many points potentially lead to a license suspension, but your car insurance company will not be pleased to hear about your violations (and they will hear about them) and use your record to significantly raise your premiums.
If your recent driving history is spotty, you may want to think twice and speak with a traffic ticket lawyer about your options before simply paying your ticket.
Can I Get Points Off My License? Only Time Can Do That.
While a good traffic ticket attorney may be able to fight your ticket, reduce the number of points resulting from the traffic violation, or help you avoid a license suspension at your DMV points hearing, they will not be able to remove points from your license after the fact. Once points are recorded against your license, the only way to get them off your record is the passage of time. As months and years pass, your old traffic violations and the points that go with them will fade into irrelevance and won’t count towards future point totals or license suspensions.
Concerned About Points On Your Driving Record Or Facing Suspension?
If you recently received a ticket, face a license suspension hearing, or have any other questions or concerns about points on your driving record, call us today to arrange for a free consultation with a Colorado Springs traffic attorney.