The Driver's License Point System in California

How Many Points Before Your License is Suspended?

California refers to its point system as "violation points" which are assigned to sections of the vehicle code. (Any violation occurring as a pedestrian or a bicyclist has no point assigned.) Although these violations are reported to your insurer, the accrued points may not have much significance because, when deciding on rate increases, most insurers apply their own point system.

Suspensions

The DMV may suspend and place on probation, or revoke, the driving privilege of a driver who is categorized as a "negligent operator." Per Vehicle Code section 12810.5a, a Class C negligent operator has

  • 4 or more points in 12 months,
  • 6 in 24 months, or
  • 8 in 36 months.

A minor, under 18 years of age, may receive a 30-day restriction for 2 points in 12 months, or be suspended for 3 points in 12 months (12814.6 VC).

How Many Points for Each Infraction?

One Point Count California Vehicle Code Violations

Violation

Disobedience to traffic officer

Evading peace officer

Disobedience to fire official

Unsafe vehicle load

Disregarding non-student crossing guard

Youth bus/children crossing highway

Disregarding funeral escort officer

Crossing safety flares/cones

Violation of license restrictions

Disregarding traffic officer's directions

Driving in bicycle lane

Disobedience to traffic signs/controller

Illegal movement/green light/arrow

Illegal movement/yellow light/arrow

Illegal movement/red/light/arrow

Traffic signals

Disobedience to flashing signals

Double lines/one broken line

Use of two-way left turn lane

Disobedience to traffic control device

Keep right

Crossing divided highway

Entering highway from service road

Lane use/slow moving vehicle

High-occupancy vehicle lane/entering/exiting

Improper lane use

Driving on sidewalk

Freeway ramp/entering/exiting

Load obstructing driver's view

Interfering with driver's control of vehicle

Driving hours limitation

Following too closely

Driving in fire area

Driving in safety zone

Towed vehicle swerving

Unlawful riding/towing

Turning across bicycle lane

Illegal passing

Right-of-way

Yielding right-of-way to horseback rider

Yielding right-of-way to emergency vehicle

Unsafe operation of emergency vehicle

Yielding right-of-way to pedestrian

Due care for pedestrian on roadway

Prohibited use of freeway

Yielding right-of-way to blind pedestrian

Turning and U-turns

Unsafe starting/backing of vehicle

Signaling turns and stops

School bus signaling

Speed/use of designated lanes

Maximum speed

Basic/prima facie speed limit

Exceeding posted/freeway speed limit

Maximum speed 70 mph

Speed in excess of local limits

Speed in excess of local limits

Speed/construction zone

Restricted speed/weather conditions

Speed/traffic lanes

Driving too slow

Speed/bridge/tunnel

Maximum designated vehicle speed

Speed/solid/metal tires

Speed limit on grades

Stop required/railroad crossing

Stop for school bus

Speed contest/aiding or abetting

Transporting person in truck load space

Driving on trails and paths

Drinking while driving

Marijuana or open container/driving

Ignition interlock verification

Defeating ignition interlock device

Disobedience to toll highway officer

Unauthorized towing

Width/load of vehicle at crossing

Disobedience to sign/vehicle crossing

Unsafe/unlawfully equipped vehicle

Operation after notice by officer

Lighting equipment

Failure to dim lights

Lamps/flag for extended load

Lamps on projecting load

Child Passenger restraint

Child seat belt

Motorcycle/passengers and equipment

Two Point Count California Vehicle Code Violations

Violation

Evading peace officer/reckless driving

Driving while suspended/revoked

Driving, suspended/revoked for refusing test

Hit and run/injury/property damage

Driving wrong side/divided highway

Speed over 100 MPH

Reckless driving

Reckless driving/causing bodily injury

Speed contest /exhibition of speed

Minor driving with BAC of 0.05% or more

DUI/alcoholic beverage or drugs

DUI/causing bodily injury or death

Getting Rid of Points

In California, after a traffic conviction is two years old, it loses its point count for suspension purposes but remains on a driver's record.

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