Do you drive your car every day to work? Imagine having your license suspended due to traffic violations and going back to riding the subway. If you are new to New Jersey or new to driving, you may not be fully aware of the state's point system.
Ignorance is not bliss…
Like every other state in the US, New Jersey has a point system in place to identify and take action against high-risk drivers. For every traffic or parking violation in New Jersey, the Department of Motor Vehicles will assign you certain points that stay on your driving record.
We hate to bear the bad news, but accumulating 12 points on your license will lead to license suspension. The good news, however, is that DMV will strike off three points for every year you go without a traffic violation.
Why else should you care about points?
The Department of Motor Vehicles implemented the point system to give drivers a certain amount of leeway before suspending their license. However, having any number of points on your license indicates that you fall under the high-risk category, which may raise many eyebrows at your car insurance office.
Even if you are not so far along in accumulating points, you will be paying a higher premium towards your car insurance. The more points you have, the higher your annual insurance premium will be
“Knowledge is Power”
– and you can use this power to save yourself from hefty fines, higher insurance premiums and license suspension.
There are over a hundred traffic violations, and each violation can assign you anywhere between 2 and 8 points. While it's impossible to remember all kinds of violations, here are some of the common violations that you can keep in mind and make a conscious effort to avoid them.
#1 Failure to Yield
It is one of the common causes of accidents in New Jersey and across the country. When a driver fails to yield, that means they fail to stop at a yield sign, stop sign, or red light and hits a pedestrian or another vehicle. This is a ticketable offense that may incur up to $200 in fine and 15 days of jail time in addition to 2 points assigned to your driving license.
Depending on the extent of damage or personal injury caused to the other party may bump up the ‘failure-to-yield' offense to ‘causing an accident' offense, which assigns 8 points to your driving record and up to $15000 in penalty. Furthermore, fleeing the accident scene is a felony and is treated as such.
#2 Overspeeding by 1-14 MPH
It's common to go a tad bit over the speed limit when trying to overtake another vehicle. If you do that, be prepared to be pulled over by a police officer. This ticketable offense assigns 2 points to your record and incurs a penalty up to $95.
Exceeding the speed limit by 15-20 MPH can double the points and the penalty. If you are going 30 MPH or more over the speed limit, you will be assigned 5 points and up to $260 in penalty.
#3 Reckless Driving
Reckless driving is subjective. There are no certain criteria defined for this violation. So it depends on the discretion of the police officer who catches you in the act. This also means that you have a fighting chance to get the ticket reduced or dismissed with the help of the WinIt app. However, if proven guilty, reckless driving will get you 5 points, up to $200 in penalty and 60 days of jail time.
Reckless driving can be characterized as frequent lane changes, quick acceleration runs, burnouts, overspeeding and tailgating.
Other common traffic violations include moving against traffic, driving a construction vehicle over 45mph, driving on public or private property to avoid a traffic signal, taking a prohibited “U” turn, failure to keep right and many more.
If you believe you have been falsely accused of a violation, you can seek out experts at WinIt to fight your ticket and have it reduced or dismissed altogether.