New Jersey traffic violations are covered under Title 39 of the New Jersey Statutes. The Municipal Court has jurisdiction over any violation of Title 39. While traffic violations are often thought of as minor, the consequences of a violation can be severe and have a lasting impact.
If you have received a summons and complaint for a traffic violation, you may feel you can simply pay the fine and forget the whole event. However, before you pay any fine, you need to understand the consequences. While some traffic violations can simply result in a fine, other violations can lead to points on your license. Remember, by paying your traffic ticket, you are pleading GUILTY. You should be aware of what else can happen before entering a guilty plea.
N.J.A.C. 13:19-10.1 sets forth the point assessment for any person convicted of certain traffic offenses. The list of offenses that can result in the assessment of points is extensive. Some of the most common violations that carry a point assessment are:
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-81 Failure to observe a traffic signal 2 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-85 Improper passing on right or off roadway 4 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-89 Tailgating 5 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-90 Failure to yield at intersection 2 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-96 Reckless driving 5 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-97 Careless driving 2 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4:98 Speeding up to 14 mph above limit 2 points
N.J.S.A. 39:4-99 Speeding 15-29 mph above limit 4 points
Speeding 30mph or more above limit 5 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-105 Failure to stop at traffic light 2 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-123 Improper right or left turn 3 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-125 Improper U-turn 3 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-126 Failure to give proper signal 2 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-127 Improper backing or turning in street 2 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-129 Leaving scene of accident – No injuries 2 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-129 Leaving scene of accident – personal inj. 8 points
- N.J.S.A. 39:4-144 Failure to observe “stop” or “yield” sign 2 points
An assessment of points is automatically reported on your driving record. Collecting a total of 12 points or more in a 2-year period can lead to a suspension of your driver’s license for a period of 30 days.
Other Considerations – Insurance Increase and Surcharges
If you are convicted of a traffic violation, not only may you end up paying fines and receiving points on your record, but you may also see an increase in your car insurance rates. Insurers may take into consideration the severity of the offense along with your driving history when making a determination. Ultimately it will depend on your auto insurer.
Additionally, certain violations may lead to you receiving a surcharge that you will have to pay on top of the fines and court costs. Another consideration is if you accumulate six or more points on your license within a three-year span, you will automatically receive a $150.00 surcharge plus $25.00 for each additional point from the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission.
Getting Rid of Points on Drivers Abstract
If you are assessed points on your driving record, there are certain ways for you to remove those points from your record.
First, 3 points will be removed from your record if you are violation free for 12 consecutive months from the date of your last violation.
Secondly, up to 2 points can be removed if you successfully complete an approved defensive driving course. However, you may only reduce your point total with a defensive driving course every five years.
Finally, another option that may become available is if you accumulate between 12 and 14 points in more than 2 years, you may be offered enrollment in a Driver Improvement Program in lieu of a 30-day suspension.
If you have been issued a traffic ticket for a violation, you should seek the advice of an experienced traffic violations attorney before making a payment or entering a plea.