Traffic Tickets and Points
If you get a traffic ticket, you'll need to decide whether to pay the fine and face the penalty on your driving history. In certain circumstances, you may instead decide to contest the ticket and plead not guilty. Choosing the first option is often simpler, although your insurance premium may rise.
In New York City and Rochester, you can respond to tickets online. You can either schedule a hearing for the traffic ticket, or you can pay the fine. Take a look at the DMV on how to Plead to or Pay TVB tickets for more information. You can always respond to your ticket by mail as well.
- If you intend to contest the ticket, it is often best practice to contact an attorney.
- If you fail to respond to your traffic ticket on time, your driver's license will be suspended. Driving with a suspended license is a crime and could lead to more fines. If this happens, be sure to answer the ticket as soon as possible by contacting the court. There you must pay a $70 suspension termination fee. You will not be automatically convicted of the ticket charge, but you must take action.
- If you do not respond to the ticket after suspension, then you will be automatically convicted of the ticket charge. This occurs by default.
Traffic tickets issued outside of Rochester and New York City are handled directly by the court in the county or city where the incident took place. In order to respond to these traffic tickets, you must contact the court directly. Follow the instructions on the back of the ticket and be sure to answer before the date listed.
- If you fail to respond, you must also pay the $70 suspension termination fee and answer the ticket to remove the suspension.
- If you intend to fight the ticket, it is often best practice to contact an attorney.
Lost Your Ticket
If you have lost your ticket, you can easily print it online. You simply need to provide the DMV with your license ID number here. You can also contact the court for the county where you received the citation as they will be able to provide you with the necessary information.
Points for Your Tickets
The Point System in New York helps identify high-risk drivers. A driver with 11 points within an 18-month period will have their license suspended.
For details on points assigned to specific violations, visit https://dmv.ny.gov/tickets/about-nys-driver-point-system.
Driver Responsibility Assessment Fee
If you receive 6 or more points during an 18-month period, you must pay a Driver Responsibility Assessment Fee. It is typically higher if the points are assigned due to an alcohol or drug conviction. Licensed New York residents may request a reduction up to 7 points once every 5 years. To qualify, you must successfully complete a certified driver improvement course and present the original certificate to the DDS by mail or in person.
If you are convicted of traffic violations in a state outside of New York, the points will not be added to your NYS driving record. The exception for this rule is if the incidents occur in the Ontario or Quebec. These points from can affect your Driver Responsibility Assessment Fee.
Point Reduction Program
If you are looking to reduce your points, you can take a DMV-approved PIRP (Point and Insurance Reduction Program). A total of 4 points will be subtracted if you previously had 11 or more points. However, the points do not come off your driving record. They will still be listed there. The PIRP course will also allow you to save 10% on your auto insurance premium.
Suspensions Due to Points
The driver's license of any person who has accumulated 11 or more points in any consecutive 18-month period shall be suspended.