Under the Trooper's Hat: Driver's Licenses and the Point System- Trooper Michael Hayen

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The “point” system implemented by the State of North Dakota allows for drivers to accumulate points on their driving record before any administrative sanctions.  Driving violations carry a monetary fine and may also have a set number of points which are added to a driver’s record. 


The points assessed vary depending on the severity of the traffic violation.  For example, if you run a red light or fail to stop at a stop sign, you will be assessed two (2) points.  If you fail to register your motor vehicle (expired tabs), it will be zero (0) points.  However, if your vehicle is registered, but you have not put the current tabs on the license plate, you will be assessed one (1) point.  Many equipment violations listed under the 39-21 chapter of the North Dakota Century Code are zero (0) points.   


For a complete listing of violations and associated points please see https://www.dot.nd.gov/divisions/driverslicense/dlpoints.htm. 


When a driver accumulates twelve (12) or more points, the North Dakota Department of Transportation (NDDOT) will suspend the driver’s license.  The length of the suspension depends on the total number of points assessed on the license.  If the points are exactly twelve (12), the driver will lose his or her license for seven (7) days.  Each additional point over twelve (12) results in a suspension of an additional seven (7) days.  After serving a suspension, the driver pays a fee to NDDOT to reinstate his or her license.  


It is important to note the NDDOT will also suspend a driver’s license for alcohol or drug related driving offenses.  


The NDDOT will reduce a driver’s total points by one point for every three months without a point-related violation.  If a driver commits a point-related violation, the three months will start over again.  For example, if you have 4 points on your driving record, it will take one year without a point-related violation to return to zero points. 


The mission of the North Dakota Highway Patrol is to make a difference every day by providing high-quality law enforcement services to keep North Dakota safe and secure. NDHP invites you to visit the FAQ section of our website: www.nd.gov/ndhp, like our Facebook page www.facebook.com/northdakotahighwaypatrol or join us on Twitter @NDHighwayPatrol or Instagram, www.instagram.com/ndhighwaypatrol, where you can learn more about traffic safety, get tips, and read NDHP news.  Download the NDHP mobile app to receive notifications, download a .pdf of items to include in your winter weather travel kit, report a crime tip, thank a trooper, ask a question, or make a suggestion for next month’s Under the Trooper’s Hat feature.


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