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Understand Virginia’s license points system

On Behalf of | Sep 4, 2020 | Traffic Stops & Violations

Many people may not realize that traffic violations can affect their lives for several years. Virginia uses a points system and people need to understand how this system works.

Failing to observe the laws of the road can result in points on a person’s driver’s license. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles says that people receive license points after a traffic violation conviction. These points are known as demerit points. People receive either three, four or six points depending on the violation they committed.

How long do points stay on a driving record?

The type of traffic violation determines how long the points stay on a person’s record. Less serious violations may stay on someone’s record for two or three years, while the points from a more serious offense may last five years. Some violations may stay on a person’s record permanently. A judge may suspend a driver’s license if the incident was especially serious. In this situation, demerit points may stay a person’s driving record for even longer.

Types of violations

People may receive demerit points for several different offenses. According to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, speeding may result in demerit points. Driving too slowly and blocking traffic can also cause people to receive these points. Additionally, people might earn points if they disobeyed traffic signs. The following violations also result in demerit points:

  • Driving without a valid Virginia driver’s license
  • Allowing someone to drive if they do not have a license
  • Turning improperly
  • Driving a vehicle on the sidewalk
  • Driving away from a collision
  • Texting and driving

Because demerit points can have a deep impact on people’s driving records, people may need to take action so they do not accumulate too many points.


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