Washington D.C.’s Traffic Violation Point System

The license penalties for traffic tickets under the District of Columbia’s driver’s license point system.

After a motorist is convicted of a traffic violation, the court reports the conviction to the D.C. Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). The DMV assigns points to the driver’s record for each traffic violation depending on the severity of the offense. A driver with too many points can face suspension, probation, or license revocation.

Points Values for Specific Violations

The District of Columbia assigns the following point values to moving violations. Both in-district and out-of-district violations are counted. Violations that are resolved via a diversion or payment program can also result in a point assessment.

Violation

Points Assessed

Permit restriction violation

4

Unlisted violation

2

Unlisted violation contributing to accident

3

Speeding 11 to 15 miles per hour over limit

3

Speeding 16 to 20 miles per hour over limit

4

Speeding 21 or more miles per hour over limit

5

Hit and run (property damage)

8

Hit and run (injuries)

12

Reckless driving

6

Aggravated reckless driving

12

Driving while suspended or revoked

12

Using license of another person

12

DUI (driving under the influence)

12

Felony involving motor vehicle

12

Misdemeanor involving motor vehicle

6

Failing to give right-of-way to emergency vehicle

6

Underage driving while alcohol in system

12

Tailgating

2

Failing to stop for school bus signals

4

Fleeing or eluding an officer

12

Expired license (less than 90 days)

2

Failure to give right-of-way to pedestrian or cyclist

3 (6 if results in collision)

Overtaking vehicle at crosswalk

3

Seatbelt violation

2 (3 for repeat offense)

Consequences of Acquiring Too Many Demerit Points

Suspension for Too Many Points

A driver with at least eight points in two years is subject to license-related penalties. At eight or nine points, license suspension isn’t mandatory, but at the discretion of the DMV. For drivers who accumulate ten points, the DMV is required to issue a 90-day suspension.

When a driver reaches 12 points, the DMV will issue a driver’s license revocation notice. The minimum revocation period is six months. A driver who has a prior point revocation can be revoked for one year. The minimum revocation is two years for drivers with two prior point suspensions.

Requesting a Hearing

The suspension or revocation will generally take effect ten days after the notice is sent but can be stayed if the driver files an objection and requests a hearing. The administrative hearing officer is allowed to review the record and make corrections. The hearing officer can also order probation depending on the circumstances. Probation requirements might include license restrictions and completion of a defensive driving course. But by completing the conditions of the probation, the driver can avoid suspension or revocation.

Occupational Licenses

The hearing officer can also issue an occupational license for drivers who can show that the loss of driving privileges would amount to extreme hardship. This license can be used to drive to work or school but is usually limited to certain hours and routes. Drivers with 16 or more points are not eligible for the occupational license. Committing a traffic violation with an occupational license will result in immediate revocation and doubling of the initial suspension or revocation period.

Point Removal

All points are deleted two years after the date of the assessment. Drivers will also accumulate safe driving points for going 12 months without traffic violations. One safe driving point is issued annually, and drivers can accrue up to five points credits.

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