Miami Legal Tips Blog

Traffic Violations ARE a Big Deal in Florida

Moving Violations Will Affect Your Driving Record

When we use the term “moving violation,” people generally think of getting a ticket for driving too fast.  While this is probably the most common reason people are stopped by police and highway patrol officers, it was reported that in 2010, more than 4 million traffic tickets were issued in Florida alone.

Speeding Is Only One Type of Moving Violation

Let’s explore the other categories that people generally don’t know about, but are clearly listed by the Florida DMV, along with the number of points will go on your driving record as a result:

  1. Leaving the scene of an accident resulting in property damage of more than $50.  This is the result of a hit-and-run accident, where you have been involved in an accident, but fled the scene for whatever reason. (6 Points)
  2. Unlawful Speed Resulting In An Accident.  If you are traveling even just 5 miles over the speed limit, and this results in an accident of any kind (whether it involved another vehicle, a pedestrian, a cyclist, etc.), you will be charged with a moving violation. (6 Points)
  3. Reckless Driving.  This can include excessive speeding, unsafe lane changes, texting while driving, driving recklessly while under the influence, and more. It also refers to a general disregard for the rules of the road and therefore, putting others at risk as a result of your carelessness. (4 Points)
  4. Any Moving Violation Resulting In An Accident.  An accident can include other vehicles that are moving along the road, as well as accidentally backing up into a parked car and causing damage to the other car.  It can also involve an accident related to people, buildings, or animals. (4 Points)
  5. Passing a Stopped School Bus.  This rule is not in place simply to irritate you because you are now delayed an extra 3 minutes for your next appointment. This is intended to protect the children who are entering or exiting the bus, from being struck and killed by moving vehicles, while they are crossing the street to go to school.  (4 Points)
  6. Driving During Restricted Hours.  Florida has enforced curfews for drivers under 17 years of age.  Expect a ticket if you and your friends are driving around past curfew. (3 Points)
  7. Unlawful Speeds Over the Posted Speed Limit.  This one is obvious, because any time you drive over the speed limit, you are increasing your chances of being ticketed.  Generally speaking, law enforcement gives some leeway and won’t necessarily ticket someone driving 5-10 miles over the speed limit.  However, the best rule of thumb is to follow the speed limits.  Be willing to face bigger fines and consequences for higher speeds past the designated speed limits. (3 Points)
  8. Violation of Curfew.  This goes along with not being allowed to drive during restricted hours.  The state only allows for drivers 17 and under to be driving past curfew if accompanied by a driver who is 21 or older. (3 Points)
  9. Open Container As An Operator.  Having an open container of any alcoholic beverage while operating a vehicle is against the law. Whether you have been drinking or not, the evidence will point to irresponsible driving and putting others at risk. (3 Points)
  10. Child Restraint Violation.  Here’s the bottom line:  Wearing a safety belt while in an automobile significantly decreases deaths caused by car accidents.  As the driver, you are responsible for making sure that all children in your vehicle are buckled up.  (3 Points)

What These Points Mean For You
According to Florida driving laws, if you accumulate 12 points (including other related points that cause suspension) during a 12 month period of time, your license will be suspended for 30 days.  If you accumulate 18 points (including other related points that cause suspension) within an 18-month period, your license will be suspended for 90 days.  If you accumulate 24 points (including other related points that cause suspension) within a 36-month period, you will lose your license for one year.

These guidelines look pretty simple, but the reality is that every situation is unique and often complex, because of the specific facts and details involved in your particular case.  You can walk into a courthouse believing that your only option is to plead guilty and suffer the consequences.  Or you can contact us today for a free consultation, and let our years of experience and knowledge in traffic law assist you in this process.


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