How does Wisconsin’s demerit point system work?

On Behalf of | Jan 18, 2021 | Firm News

The demerit point system is a way of keeping track of the moving traffic violations on your record. Points apply to your driving record upon conviction on charges of a traffic violation. You can face license suspension if you accumulate a sufficient number of points.

Suspension due to the accumulation of demerit points can last from two months to a year. According to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, the length of your suspension, as well as the points required, depends on the type of license you have.

How many points do you get for each violation?

The number of points assessed depends on the severity of the violation. Relatively minor violations, such as not having a registration plate light, obstructing traffic or driving up to 10 miles over the speed limit, can incur zero, two or three points, respectively. More serious violations, such as reckless or imprudent driving, can incur either four or six points.

How many points do you need for suspension?

With a regular driver’s license, whether personal or commercial, you may see it suspended for two months if you accumulate 12 to 16 demerit points in a 12-month period. You could face a one-year suspension if you accumulate more than 30 points in the same amount of time. There are also six-month suspensions for 23 to 30 points and four-month suspensions for 17 to 22 points.

However, the rules are different and much stricter if you have a probationary license. The same one-year suspension applies if you accumulate more than 30 points in a 12-month period. However, if you accumulate between 12 and 30 points within the span of a year, you face a six-month suspension of your driving privileges.