Red Light and Stop Sign Tickets in Michigan

Read about Michigan’s red light and stop sign laws and the consequences of a violation.

If you get caught running a stop sign or red light in Michigan, you'll typically be looking at a fine and points on your driving record. (Though you may have other options for dealing with a traffic citation.) This article gives an overview of what the law prohibits and some specific consequences of a stop sign or red light violation.

Making the Stop

At a red light (solid or flashing) or a stop sign, motorists must come to a complete stop prior to the nearest of reaching a marked limit line, entering the crosswalk at the near side of the intersection, or entering the intersection itself.

Right-On-Red Rule

Michigan law allows motorists to make a right turn after stopping at a red light unless there's a sign indicating the turn is prohibited. However, drivers must use caution and follow right-of-way rules when making a right on red.

Left-on-Red Rule

In Michigan, a motorist can do a left turn after stopping at a red light only onto a one-way street. Of course, motorists need to follow the normal right-of-way rules and proceed with caution when making the turn.

Meaning of a Yellow Light

In Michigan, a yellow light is a warning that the signal is about to turn red. Motorists must stop at a yellow light unless they are so close to the intersection that a stop can't be safely made.

Fines and Points for Violations

Stop sign and red light violations are civil infractions in Michigan. Generally, convicted motorists are looking at a fine of up to $100. However, court costs can increase the amount the driver has to actually pay.

A stop sign or red light conviction will also add two demerit points to a motorist's driving record. Accumulating too many points can lead to license suspension. However, eligible motorists can avoid the points by completing a "basic driver improvement course."

Other Possible Charges

Depending on the circumstances, a red light or stop sign violation could also result in a reckless driving conviction. And if one of these offenses leads to the death of another person, vehicular homicide charges are a possibility.

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