As most people know, turning 18 means many new opportunities and responsibilities for young adults. However, it also means that your actions will be examined as an adult and the consequences of those actions determined accordingly. Tennessee’s sentencing guidelines vary between the juvenile and adult justice system, and the exact same offense committed by an adult over the age of 18 as opposed to being committed by a juvenile could carry vastly different penalties. One example is that of the driver’s license points system for traffic violations.
In general, a conviction for a traffic violation such as speeding, reckless driving, or failing to signal can add anything from 1 to 8 points on your license. As a juvenile, accruing 6 or more points within a year means that you will be placed in the Driver Improvement Program and required to attend an administrative hearing where your record will be reviewed and your license potentially suspended.
Traffic Violations and Points on Your License
Below is a sample point schedule for common traffic violations in Tennessee.
|Speeding 1-5mph in excess of speed zone||1 point|
|Speeding 6-15mph in excess of speed zone||3 points|
|Speeding 16-25mph in excess of speed zone||4 points|
|Speeding 26-35mph in excess of speed zone||5 points|
|Speeding 36-45mph in excess of speed zone||6 points|
|Following improperly||3 points|
|Failing to obey traffic instructions||4 points|
|Improper passing||4 points|
|Wrong way, side, or direction||4 points|
|Failing to yield the right-of-way||4 points|
|Making an improper turn||4 points|
|Failure to report a crash||4 points|
|Leaving the scene of a crash||5 points|
|Reckless driving||6 points|
|Violation of license or certificate restrictions||6 points|
|Failure to yield to emergency vehicles||6 points|
|Reckless endangerment by vehicle||8 points|
|Failure to stop at a railroad crossing||8 points|
How Long Do Points Stay on Your License in Tennessee?
All points remain on your license for two years in the state of Tennessee. Adults with 6 to 11 points are issued warnings that another violation will result in the loss of their license.
Penalties for Driver's License Points in Tennessee
Of primary concern to most adults when their children are cited for traffic offenses are the ramifications those violations may have on their insurance. Often times, judges are lenient on first-time offenders whether they be under or over 25, a time when most young people come off their parents’ plans. However, once there is more than one violation within a short period of time, that leniency tends to lessen.
As an adult, accruing twelve points within a year means that you will be required to attend an administrative hearing. At this hearing, you could face the possibility of losing your license altogether.
Hiring an experienced attorney can be helpful in may traffic violation situations as the offenses are often mischarged. An example would be charging reckless driving when someone has drastically exceeded the speeding limit.
If you have been charged with a traffic violation, call the law office of Best And Brock at (423) 829-1043 to speak with an experienced defense attorney today.