Aramjoo Law Firm LLC helps individuals in the Liberty, Kansas City, and surrounding areas with their traffic law matters.
Traffic offenses can include a number of different violations, including but not limited to speeding, driving while under the influence, driving while suspended/revoked and failure to yield.
Under Missouri, the right to drive is considered a privilege. If too many violations occur, you can lose the privilege. Losing the ability to drive can be severe because whether you are driving to work, taking children to school or just going out for fun, most activities surround the ability to drive.
Missouri utilizes a point system in dealing with traffic violations. Depending on the offense, there are a number of points that are associated. A list of offenses as well as points associated can be found here – http://dor.mo.gov/forms/899.pdf. In Missouri, the number of points not only depends on what violation occurred but also on whether it was a state law, county ordinance or municipal ordinance.
If you accumulate a total of 8 or more points in 18 months, the Department of Revenue will suspend your driving privilege.
A license suspension means that your license is not valid for a certain period of time. License suspensions are temporary and once the time period for a license suspension passes, drivers are able to regain their ability to legally drive.
- 1st suspension – 30 days
- 2nd suspension – 60 days
- 3rd or more suspensions – 90 days
The Department of Revenue will revoke your driving privilege for one year if you accumulate:
- 12 or more points in 12 months
- 18 or more points in 24 months
- 24 or more points in 36 months
A license revocation means that your license is cancelled and is more serious than a license suspension. A number of steps may need to occur before you are able to legally drive again.
Additionally, as Missouri Department of Revenue Driver’s Guide (http://dor.mo.gov/forms/Driver_Guide.pdf) points out, there are a number of offenses that can immediately cause your license to be lost. These include but are not limited to –
- Parent or Guardian Request to Deny a Driver License — If you are under the age 18, your parent or guardian may request that the Director of Revenue deny you a license. If you already have a driver license, the request (Form 4811) will cancel your license. When the department receives the request, a denial will be placed on your driving record. The denial expires when you turn 18 or when your parent or guardian requests your driving status be cleared. Form 4811 may be found on the department’s web site at www.dor.mo.gov or at any license office.
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (see Chapter 10)
- Refusing to let a police officer test you for alcohol or drugs
- Leaving the scene of a traffic accident
- Failing to file an accident report (see Chapter 13)
- Giving false information when you apply for a license
- Failing to settle a court judgment made against you for damages resulting from a motor vehicle accident
- Failing to keep insurance (financial responsibility) (see Chapter 13)
- Changing the information on your license or using someone else’s license when you attempt to buy alcohol
- Failing to appear for an exam when requested by the Driver License Bureau
- Using a motor vehicle to commit a felony or causing the death of someone in a motor vehicle crash
- Having too many points on your driving record (see Chapter 11)
- Letting someone else use your driver license
- Failing to appear in court or pay traffic tickets in Missouri or other states
- Failing to pay child support
- Failing to use an ignition interlock device when required
- Stealing fuel from a gas station
- Possessing any intoxicating liquor if you are a minor
- Submitting false proof of insurance
- Failing to yield the right-of-way and causing injury or death
Many ask what the benefit is to amending a ticket. The benefit is two-fold.
First, Missouri utilizes a point system that keeps track of what offenses have occurred. Too many points can equal a suspended license. Missouri provides a list of what points will be assessed depending on what the infraction involves – http://dor.mo.gov/forms/899.pdf.
Second, insurance providers audit driving records periodically and will increase rates depending on the infraction received. By amending a traffic ticket, individuals may pay an increased amount at first but will pay significantly less in most cases compared to the increased insurance costs over time. InsuranceQuotes.com has listed the following offenses as the “unlucky seven” and can have a dramatic effect on insurance costs.
1. DUI – 93 percent increase.
2. Reckless driving – 82 percent increase.
3. Careless driving – 27 percent increase.
4. Speeding 1 to 15 mph over the limit – 21 percent increase; 16 to 30 mph over the limit – 28 percent increase; 31+ mph over the limit – 30 percent increase.
5. Failure to stop – 19 percent increase.
6. Failure to yield to pedestrians – 19 percent increase.
7. Driving in a carpool lane – 18 percent increase.
Traffic law and offenses can be confusing and can lead to severe consequences. Hiring an attorney can not only lessen the overall cost of the offense but can also lessen the impact of the offense.
Paemon Aramjoo, criminal defense attorney at Aramjoo Law Firm, handles all traffic related matters.