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Question:  How long do points stay on a Florida driver's license?

Answer: Points that are placed on your Florida driver's license, due to traffic violations, stay on your record and are counted against you for three years for insurance purposes. Points can continue to accumulate on your record beyond those three years, though, so the state can keep track and impose penalties if necessary.

In Florida, if you accumulate too many points within a certain time period, your license can be suspended or revoked. A Florida driver's license is automatically suspended for:

  • 30 days if you receive 12 points within 12 months
  • 3 months for 18 points within 18 months
  • 1 year suspension for being assessed 24 points within 36 months

Also, if you accumulate three major offenses or 15 minor offenses, for which you receive points, within a five year period your Florida license can be revoked. If you have amassed this amount of points and offenses within five years you are termed by the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (HSMV) to be a habitual traffic offender (HTO).

In computing points and suspensions, the offense dates of all convictions are used. Three points will be deducted from the driver record of any person whose driving privilege has been suspended only once under the point system and has been reinstated, if such person has complied with all other requirements.

When you receive certain types of moving violations in Florida you may elect to attend traffic school or a driver improvement class to keep points off your record. According to the HSMV, the one benefit that comes with this choice is that your car insurance rates cannot go up;however, if you have a good driver discount your insurance company may choose to take it away due to the violation.

Other benefits are that points are not added to your driver license record and the fine is reduced up to 18 percent. In Florida, you can only choose this option for moving violations five times in a lifetime and cannot have made this same election in the preceding 12 months.

Here is more information on Florida car insurance and state laws:

Factors that Affect your Car Insurance Rate

In addition to traffic violations, your credit, gaps in coverage, accidents and who you add to your policy can impact your rates. Here is how average car insurance rates in Florida compare to those for common mishaps, as well as for adding a young driver:

  Clean Driver Rate Rate After Incident $ Difference
1 Bodily injury accident$1,463$2,036$573
1 Property damage accident over $1,000$1,463$2,036$573
Coverage lapse of 15 days$1,463$1,557$94
Add 16-year-old female teen$1,463$3,324$1,861
Add 16-year-old male teen$1,463$4,370$2,907
Poor credit$1,463$2,616$1,153

The table shows the average annual rate of 10 ZIP codes in the state from the following carriers, in no particular order: Progressive, Allstate, State Farm, Nationwide, GEICO and Farmers. In some cases, insurers declined coverage. Data was provided for CarInsurance.com by Quadrant Information Services.

 

Florida car insurance laws

Florida mature driver discount

Florida law says that drivers age 55 and older get a 10 percent discount on their rates if they pass a state-approved driving course. The discounted rate applies to the liability (bodily injury and property damage), personal injury protection, and collision portions of your policy. You will get the discounted rates for three years if you don’t cause an accident and have no moving violations on your record.

How much will a speeding ticket raise my car insurance rates?

Typically insurers review your driving record upon renewal, and will raise your rates if you have a speeding ticket. This higher rate typically lasts for three years. A speeding ticket in Florida will raise your rates, on average, by 15 percent, according to our analysis of rates based on Quadrant Information Services data.

Hurricane warning

Hurricanes and tropical storms threaten Florida each year. Comprehensive coverage will repair the damage to your vehicle for hail and flooding -- but you can't wait too long to buy it. Make sure to get the coverage in effect before a storm warning is issued. Otherwise you may be out of luck. Most insurers will not allow you to buy extra insurance once a tropical storm or hurricane watch/warning is issued. You’ll have to wait 48 to 72 hours after it’s lifted to buy more coverage.

No-deductible windshield repair or replacement

In an effort to get drivers to repair cracked or damaged windshields, Florida state law says that your comprehensive coverage deductible isn't applicable for windshield damage.

Snowbirds

If a vehicle is in Florida for more than 90 days during a 365-day period (the days do not have to be consecutive), you must purchase personal injury protection and property damage liability limits. You must get at least the state minimum limits. See "Car insurance for snowbirds" for more information.

Uninsured motorist coverage and penalties for driving in Florida without insurance

Florida is second in the nation for the percent of uninsured drivers on the road – 24 percent. (Oklahoma is No. 1 with 26 percent.) That’s why it’s wise to carry uninsured motorist coverage. It helps pays for damages when you’re in an accident with an uninsured driver.

If you’re the one driving without coverage and you’re busted, you may have to pay a $30 fine and your registration and license may be suspended and your plates confiscated. You may also be required to file an SR-22 form. If your license and registration are suspended, you will have to pay a $150 reinstatement fee upon renewal.

Seat belt law

If you're a driver or passenger and are ticketed for a seat belt violation, you will not get a point 

point on your record; however, if the ticket is for a child restraint offense, it comes with three points. The fine is $30 per adult and $60 per child, plus administrative and court costs.

Expired registration

Registrations issued in your name expire at midnight on the day of your birth date, except for mobile homes and commercial vehicles. The fine for a tag that is expired for less than six months is around $100 and a tag expired six months or more can come with jail time up to 60 days and/or a fine of up to $500.

Insurance fraud

Florida is notorious for car insurance fraud. It has more questionable claims than any other state, with con men frequently taking advantage of its no-fault insurance law, which requires all drivers to carry $10,000 in personal injury protection coverage for injuries suffered in a car crash.

Proof of insurance via smartphone

Florida is one of 43 states that allow drivers to show electronic proof of insurance during a traffic stop.

Florida senior driver law

Drivers over age 80 must renew their license every six years, compared with every eight years for younger people. Additionally, people 80 and older must pass an eye exam with every renewal.

Florida also allows confidential reporting of a possibly unsafe driver by anyone – doctor, law enforcement, relative or bystander. Officials may ask those drivers to submit medical reports from their doctor or to undergo testing at a driver license office.

Florida DUI insurance 

Here are the penalties and fines for a DUI in Florida:

First offense: Jail for up to six months; Fine $500-1,000; License suspended 180 days to one year; Hardship reinstatement - complete DUI school prior or hardship application; Community service sine $10 for each hour of community service required; Community service 50 hours; Treatment program may be allowed in lieu of imprisonment; Vehicle impound 10 days.

Second offense: Jail for up to nine months (mandatory 10 days if within five years of previous DUI); Fine $1,000-2,000; License suspended 180 days to one year (License suspended five years if within five years of previous), eligible for hardship reinstatement after one year; Hardship reinstatement - complete DUI school; Ignition interlock device required for one year; Vehicle impound 30 days (if within five years of previous).

If you’ve had a DUI, read our DUI insurance guide to learn how to minimize its effects on your insurance rates and driving record.

Florida FR-44

In order to have your Florida driver’s license reinstated after a DUI, you must bump up your coverage and submit proof that you did so. You must submit verification that you are carrying increased liability insurance ( 300/100/50). Proof of this increased insurance coverage must be provided by filing a form. It is called the Florida Uniform Financial Responsibility Certificate. It is commonly known as the “FR-44 form.” You will have to keep FR-44 coverage in place for three years.

Your insurer will file the form with your state motor vehicle department for you. Be aware, however, that not all insurers will process FR-44 forms. Contact our call center toll-free at 1-855-430-7753. Our agents will help you obtain a quote for the coverage you need. Most companies we work with can provide immediate proof of insurance via e-mail or fax.

Your rates will increase following a DUI conviction, typically for five years. While you will pay more, you can still save by shopping for the insurer with the lowest rate.

Florida DUI Car Insurance Rates by Company

Company Clean Driver Rate DUI Rate $ Increase % Increase
Company 1$2,214$3,743$1,52869%
Company 2$1,682$2,181$49930%
Company 3$1,308$6,439$5,131392%
Company 4$1,469$1,886$41728%
Company 5$883$967$849%

The table shows the average annual rate of 10 ZIP codes in the state from the following carriers, in no particular order: Progressive, Allstate, State Farm, Nationwide, GEICO and Farmers. In some cases, insurers declined coverage. Data was provided for CarInsurance.com by Quadrant Information Services.

 

Florida DMV and Office of Insurance Regulation resources

For information on how to reinstate your license and registration after a suspension, get the details at the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles suspensions website.

If you need to get the insurance details for another driver after an accident, mail a request along with a copy of the crash report to:

Bureau of Motorist Compliance
2900 Apalachee Parkway, Room B260F, MS-87
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0585.

To file an insurance-related complaint with the state use the following contact information:

  • Consumer helpline: 1-877-693-5236
  • Out-of-state callers: (850) 413-3089
  • Email address: Consumer.Services@myfloridacfo.com