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Piling on the Points?

How many driving points have you accumulated in the last three years? It only takes one traffic ticket to gain a point in California, yet it can take at least three years for that same point to disappear. Points can pile on quickly, much quicker than they drop off your record. Understanding how the point system in California works is vital to keeping your license and lowering your insurance premiums.

Negligent Operator Treatment System

California is one of over 40 states that use a point system to track driving violations. The Negligent Operator Treatment System or N.O.T.S. assigns points to different driving violations that can stay on your record for up to seven years. Standard moving violations like not coming to a complete stop at a stop sign or going slightly over the speed limit accumulate one point. More severe violations like DUIs and reckless driving can result in two points and may stay on your record longer.

So, what does this all mean to you as a California driver? Most traffic tickets you receive, whether they happen in Bakersfield or even in another state, create points. If you accumulate enough within a set period, you could face a suspended license. Four points in one year, six points in two years or eight points in three years can all lead to a driving license suspension.

Eliminating Points

Since driving points can endanger your driving privileges and raise your insurance rates, keeping them low should be a priority. Unfortunately, once you have been handed a ticket, you are facing more points unless you do one of two things:

· Take a state-licensed traffic course to keep the violation off your record

· Fight it in court

You can take a traffic course once every 18 months to prevent minor violations from showing up on your driving record and adding points. But if you have used this option recently, or the violation is more severe, fighting the ticket is your best option.

Legal Help for Fighting Traffic Tickets

If you want to avoid a suspended license or just don’t want any more points on your record, our team at Bigger & Harman, APC can help. We specialize in California traffic law and keeping our clients behind the wheel. Call us at 661-349-9300 or click here to contact us online.