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Michigan Criminal Law Blog

Points on Your License in Michigan: Here’s What You Need to Know

speeding ticketMost states have a system where they apply or remove points from your drivers’ license if you commit a traffic violation and Michigan is no exception. In Michigan, drivers can get points applied to their license which remain there for two years after the date they’re convicted of the violation.

So what does it mean to “have points” on your license?

Points are applied when you commit a traffic violation. They have consequences. They are a way for law enforcement and the court to recognize you’ve committed previous traffic infractions, but they also trigger other negative consequences.

For instance, points:

• Increase insurance rates
• Put job and career opportunities at risk
• Result in fees
• Can mean restriction or suspension of your driving privileges

Understanding the Difference between the Points and the Conviction

It’s important for drivers to keep in mind that just because points are temporary doesn’t mean the conviction itself is removed from your record at the same time.

Points fall off of your license after two years, but the conviction remains for seven years. Misdemeanors, including drunk driving convictions, remain on your record permanently.

Are Insurance Points the Same as Points on Your License?

The simple answer is “no,” insurance companies have their own points system. However, insurance company points typically correspond with points assigned by the court system.

It’s easy to see why things can get confusing when you’re trying to keep track of multiple point systems related to your driving. This is especially true since insurance companies tend to apply more points than the court system and you can simultaneously have two different point totals. Insurance companies also tend to use a three-year system for points, as opposed to the court system’s two-year system.

To learn more about how points on your license affect insurance rates, https://www.dmv.org/insurance/how-driving-record-points-affect-auto-insurance-rates.php”>check out this information from DMV.org.

Why It’s Important to Fight Points

Many people assume if they pay their ticket and accept responsibility for whatever mistake they made behind the wheel they’ll leave their problems behind them.

Unfortunately, this might not be the case.

Insurance companies examine your driving history and use traffic violations and points to determine the amount of your insurance premiums. More tickets and more points mean you’ll be paying a higher rate. Fighting against a ticket can save you a great deal of money in the long run, even if all you manage to avoid are the points.

If you’d like to know more about how the point system works in Michigan or you have questions about how you can defend yourself against a traffic infraction and avoid the points, we can help. Contact Andrew W. Kowalkowski, PLLC at (248) 974-9594 for more information.

 

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