MOVING VIOLATION OR NON-MOVING VIOLATION
A moving violation occurs whenever a traffic law is violated by a vehicle in motion. Some of the moving violations are speeding, running a stop sign or red light, and driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY AGAINST DRIVING UNDER INFLUENCE (DUI) WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR ME?
Virginia has enacted some of the toughest laws in the United States for minors caught driving under the influence of alcohol. Under the Code of Virginia, § 18.2-266.1, it is illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to operate a motor vehicle after illegally consuming alcohol or drugs. A violation of this law is a Class 1 misdemeanor. Punishment includes loss of your driver’s license for one year from the date of conviction and a mandatory minimum fine of $500 or having to perform a minimum of 50 hours of community service.
HOW MUCH IS A SPEEDING TICKET?
In general, there is a $6 fine for every MPH over the speed limit in Virginia speeding cases. However, the fee increases to $7 per MPH when speeding in a school or work zone and $8 per MPH when speeding through a residential area—with an additional $200 in total.
RED LIGHT TICKET
Traffic Citation for running a red light are of two types: (a) red light ticket camera violations and (b) those in which a law enforcement officer pulls a driver over for running a red light. A red light ticket and stop sign citation could cost up to $350. A stop sign or red light conviction will also add demerit points to a motorist’s driving record.
HOW MUCH IS A RECKLESS DRIVING TICKET?
Reckless driving fines can go up to $2,500. While that number is not imposed often, it’s not unusual to see a fine of $350 or more for these offenses; whereas, the court costs are higher for a misdemeanor offense than for a traffic ticket.
WHAT ARE DEMERIT POINTS? HOW DO THEY AFFECT ME AS A TEEN DRIVER?
Demerit points are the ways that the Broker Service keeps up with moving violations. Points are recorded against your driving record whenever you are convicted of not obeying the law in a moving vehicle. For example, a first violation of the curfew and passenger restrictions will result in three demerit points. A second or third violation may result in the court suspending your driving privileges for up to six months.
WHAT ARE THE OTHER CONSEQUENCES FOR DEMERIT POINTS?
Drivers under age 18 receiving a demerit point conviction (including safety belt or child restraint violations) will be required to attend a driver improvement clinic. If you are under age 18 and receive a second conviction, the Broker Service will suspend your driving privilege for 90 days. After the third demerit point conviction received while less than 18 years old, the Broker Service will revoke your permit or license for one year or until you reach age 18, whichever is longer.
WHAT DOES IMPLIED CONSENT MEAN?
Under Code of Virginia § 18.2-268.2, if you operate a motor vehicle, you automatically consent to have samples of your blood and/or breath taken for a chemical test to determine the level of alcohol or drugs in your blood. This applies if you have been arrested for a violation of driving while intoxicated or under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Code of Virginia § 18.2-268.3 prescribes the penalties for refusing to take the test. For a first offense, you may lose your privilege to drive for a period of one year. Additional offenses result in substantially stronger penalties.
CAN MY PARENTS TAKE AWAY MY PRIVILEGE TO DRIVE?
Yes. Your parents granted you the privilege to obtain a learner’s permit or a driver’s license and to drive on Virginia’s highways. They can also take away the privilege. If you are under the age of 18, your parents can choose to cancel your learner’s permit or driver’s license by simply submitting form DL 18, “Cancellation of Minor’s Driving Privilege.” Once it is canceled, neither you nor your parents will be able to reapply for at least six months.
WHAT ABOUT CELL PHONES? CAN I USE ONE WHILE DRIVING?
No. Virginia’s cellular telephone law (Code of Virginia § 46.2-334.01 (C)) restricts a driver under age 18, who holds a learner’s permit or driver’s license, from using any cellular telephone or any other wireless communications device, regardless of whether such device is or is not hand-held. Text messaging while driving is also prohibited by Code of Virginia 46.2-1078.1.
WHEN CAN I USE A CELL PHONE OR ANY OTHER TELECOMMUNICATIONS DEVICE?
During driver emergency.
* When the vehicle is lawfully parked or stopped.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER STOPS ME WHILE I AM DRIVING?
Law enforcement officers are charged with enforcing the law and protecting the safety of the public. You should always show respect for law enforcement officials. If signaled to pull over, stop at the first safe place you come upon. If you must travel a short distance to get to such a place, use your directional signal to show the officer that you see his or her signal and intend to pull over. Carefully follow the officer’s instructions. Do not get out of the car unless told to do so. Be prepared to show your driver’s license and vehicle registration. If you have violated a traffic law, you will be told. With most violations, drivers receive a summons to appear in traffic court. In cases involving serious violations, the officer may arrest the driver.