Demerit Points and Driver’s Licenses in Wisconsin
You woke up late and you are rushing to make it to work on time. Travelling along Highway 41 and you catch a glimpse of flashing red in your rearview mirror. Your heart sinks and you look at your speedometer . . . 85mph!?!?!? Now you know that the flashing reds are for you. On top of being late for work, you now face a fine and demerit points on your license. While it might seem easy to just pay the fine, you must consider the other consequences it could have.
Now, imagine earlier this year, in a snow storm, you were cited for driving too fast for conditions, worth 4 demerit points. And shortly before that, you got pulled over for inattentive driving. That’s another 4 demerit points. You simply paid both of those tickets and gained 8 demerit points. Believe it or not, your new speeding ticket has now put you in danger of a license suspension.
The Department of Transportation has the authority to suspend driving privileges of “a habitually reckless or negligent operator” based on the number of points accrued. You will be considered “a habitually reckless or negligent operator” if you accrue 12 or more demerit points. If you accumulate 12 points within any 12-month period your license will be suspended for 2 months (6 months if you have a probationary driver’s license or driving permit). If you accrue more points, the suspension could be for as long as a year.
In this scenario, if you just pay your ticket and accept the 4 demerit points associated with the violation, your license will be suspended for 2 months! You won’t be allowed to drive – for 2 months! If you had successfully challenged either or both of your previous citations, you wouldn’t be in this predicament. And a successful challenge of this speeding ticket would prevent you from a suspension.
Don’t overlook challenging traffic citations before you get too deep. If you are facing a traffic citation or driver’s license suspension in Appleton, Oshkosh, Green Bay, or the surrounding area, Petit & Dommershausen, SC will be here for you. Call us at 920-739-9900.