ASK GARY: How Long do Traffic Violations Stay on my Record?
Even the best drivers make mistakes, but after receiving a traffic ticket, many people want to just move on with their lives and pretend like nothing has happened. You might be aware that there’s a “point system” that determines your insurance premiums based on your driving record, and understanding how this system works is another part of being an educated driver.
The Massachusetts point system gives our “surchargeable points” and is based on the amount and type of various violations. Moving violations count for a set number of points, depending on the type: speeding counts as 2 points, minor at-fault accidents for 3 and major violations like a DUI set you back 5 points.
If you have too many points it can affect your license in several ways. You should also be aware that too many violations in a short period of time might make it mandatory for you to attend traffic school, or even result in a suspended license.
Of course, since the point system has a direct effect on the insurance premiums you pay, you’ll want to lose the surcharge points as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, the only cure for a record of bad driving is a longer record of good driving –each point removed takes three years of safe driving after a five year with fewer than three violations. The simplest answer is to not receive any points in the first place!