Special Considerations for Under 18 Year Old Drivers In Georgia

Posted by Richard Lawson | Apr 24, 2014 | 0 Comments

When a person is convicted of a traffic offense the Department of Driver Services in Georgia will assess points on the driver's license.  These points are used to keep track of the driver's prior convictions for traffic violations.  Accumulating points on your driver's license can also lead to a suspension of your driver's license.  It is particularly important for drivers who are under the age of 18 to keep this point system in mind because their driver's license can be suspended for accumulating four total points on their license.

Some traffic offenses will suspend the driver's license of a driver under the age of 18 because the points associated with the offense are 4 or more points. If a driver under the age of 18 were to be convicted of any of these traffic violations their license would be suspended.  They will also face the penalties associated with the traffic ticket as well (fines, community service, defensive driving school, etc.).  These traffic violations are:

  • Aggressive Driving = 6 points
  • Unlawful Passing of a School Bus = 6 points
  • 34 mph or more over the speed limit = 6 points
  • Reckless driving = 4 points
  • Improper passing on a hill or curve = 4 points
  • 24 to 33 mph over the speed limit = 4 points

Drivers under the age of 18 have to further worry about their license being suspended through accumulation of points.  This specifically means that any combination of Georgia Traffic Tickets can result in a suspended driver's license.  If an under 18 year-old driver has more than one minor traffic violation, they can easily accumulate 4 more or more points.  A review of the below-listed traffic offenses and corresponding points clearly illustrates how easily underage drivers in Georgia can accumulate 4 points:

  • 15 to 18 miles over the speed limit = 2 points
  • 19 to 23 miles over the speed limit = 3 points
  • Failure to obey traffic-control device = 3 points
  • Failure to obey police officer = 3 points
  • Possessing an open container of an alcoholic beverage while driving = 2 points
  • Failure to adequately secure load (except fresh farm produce), resulting in an accident = 2 points
  • Violation of a child safety restraint 1st offense = 1 point Violation of a child safety restraint 2nd or subsequent offense = 2 point
  • Operating a vehicle while text messaging = 1 point
  • Improper use of designated travel lane 4th and subsequent offense = 1point
  • All other moving violations = 3 points

As you can see, it can be very easy to accumulate 4 points, even in a single traffic stop.  In addition, many people receive multiple traffic tickets when they are pulled over by a police officer.  For instance, if some someone ran into another car while text messaging they could receive a traffic ticket for operating a vehicle while text messaging (1 point) and following too closely (3 points), which would result in 4 points being assessed on their license and their license being suspended.  But these are accumulated points and the traffic tickets do not have to occur from the same event to result a license suspension for a driver who is under the age of 18.  For instance, a driver may be convicted of running a red light (3 points) at age 16 and convicted of speeding 15 miles over the speed limit (2 points) at age 17.  This would result in an accumulation of 5 points and their driver's license would be suspended.

Under the age of 18 drivers must be diligent about keeping points off of their licenses because these points can add up quickly and a license suspension will have a major impact on their lives and the lives of their family members.  If you are under 18 and receive a traffic ticket you need to contact a Georgia Traffic Ticket Lawyer immediately because only a Georgia Traffic Ticket Attorney is familiar with how to save your license from being suspended.

The most common way our Georgia Traffic Ticket Attorneys help prevent a license suspension is by getting the ticket reduced to an offense with fewer or no points associated with it.   Still, in this situation your fine amount would likely be unchanged, and the driver may have attend defensive driving school and complete community service.

If you are under the age of 18, the situation is not hopeless.  Contact the Georgia Traffic Ticket Lawyers from our office as soon as possible.

About the Author

Richard Lawson

Managing Partner at Lawson & Berry:


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