The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) uses a system of points to evaluate drivers. When you are convicted of certain traffic violations, you receive a certain number of demerit points against your driving record.
Similarly, for each full calendar year that you hold a valid Virginia driver’s license and do not have any violations or suspensions, you receive a safe driving point. You can also earn safe driving points when you complete a driver improvement clinic. You can accumulate up to five safe driving points to offset your demerit points.
Not all traffic violations receive demerit points, yet they will still be posted to your driving record. If you are a repeat offender, you can accumulate many points and lose your license. It can also cause your vehicle insurance rates to rise.
What Happens If I Get a Ticket?
When a law enforcement officer cites you for a violation, he or she will issue you a ticket, or for serious offenses, take you into custody.
Once you are convicted of a traffic violation, the court lets the DMV know. The DMV will then post the conviction to your driving record and assign points according to the violation.
If applicable, next the DMV will issue an order of suspension. The DMV might also issue an order requiring satisfactory completion of a driver improvement clinic. Your insurance company may request notification and raise your rates if you are an unsafe driver.
Which Violations Receive Demerit Points?
The official Virginia DMV website lists traffic violations and their corresponding points. Read the Moving Violations and Point Assessments publication to see which violations incur points, how many demerit points they are assigned, and how long the convictions will remain on your record.
Because this information is subject to change without notice, contact our Richmond speeding ticket law office if you have any questions.
Demerit points stay on your record for two years. Convictions remain on your record for different periods, depending on the severity of the offense. Convictions could remain on your record for longer than the list specifies if your license is suspended, revoked, disqualified, or cancelled.
Insurance Company Point System
Insurance companies also rate drivers and assign points to your insurance record. These are not the same as DMV points. Insurance companies have their own systems for assigning points that are different from the DMV demerits.