Understanding Demerit Points

If you are convicted of a driving-related offence or traffic violation, the Ontario Ministry of Transportation adds demerit points to your driving record. When you receive demerit points, the points remain on your driving record for two years from the date of the offence. The danger of accumulating too many of these points is losing your driving privileges.

Demerit points are designed to encourage drivers to practice safe driving. The system also protects the public from negligence, careless, and reckless drivers by removing these drivers from the road when they accumulate too many points.

Examples of Demerit Points for Common Traffic Offences

Ontario has fifteen classes of driver’slicences and demerit points apply to all classes; however, some classes are penalized more severely for traffic offences. Furthermore, the number of demerit points it takes to lose your driving privileges depends on your driver’slicenceclassification. It is important to remember that you can also receive demerit points for offences outside of Ontario.

Some common driving offences and the demerit points added for a conviction include:

  • Failing to wear a safety belt or ensure that a child is properly secured in a safety seat or booster seat – 2 points
  • Failing to signal – 2 points
  • Following too closely – 4 points
  • Using a hand-held device while driving – 3 points
  • Driving the wrong direction on a divided road – 3 points
  • Leaving the scene of an accident – 7 points
  • Racing or careless driving – 6 points
  • Failing to stop for a police officer – 7 points
  • Failing to stop for a school bus – 6 points
  • Speeding by 30 to 49 km/hour – 4 points
  • Failing to yield the right of way – 3 points
  • Improper left turn or right turn – 2 points
  • Not reporting a traffic crash to a police officer – 3 points
  • Driving too slowly – 2 points
  • Speeding by 16 o 29 km/hour – 3 points

You can find a full list of the demerit points for traffic-related and driving offences in the Highway Traffic Act Ontario Regulation 339/94.

What Happens When I Receive Demerit Points?

The penalty depends on the classification of driver’s licence and the number of demerit points you have accumulated.

For new drivers, you will receive a warning letter when you have two points; however, six points may result in an interview with a Ministry of Transportation representative to discuss why you have so many points. Failing to attend a required meeting results in a suspended licence. At nine points during a two-year period, your driver’s licence is suspended for 60 days. If you reach nine points again, the suspension can be increased to six months.

The demerit point system is different for drivers with full driving privileges. The warning letter is not issued until you have reached six points and the mandatory meeting does not occur until you have nine demerit points against you. You may also be required to complete a driver examination test. Failing to attend the meeting or failing the test results in a suspended licence. At 15 points, your driver’s licence is suspended for 30 days. Failing to surrender your licence results in a suspension of two years.Accumulating 15 demerit points again results in a six-month suspension.

If you are required to attend a mandatory meeting to discuss your driving record, you must pay a $50 fee for the meeting. Drivers who do not pay the fee will have their driver’s licence canceled.

Ontario Car Accident Lawyers

Some reckless drivers continue driving even when their driving privileges are suspended. These drivers often drop their insurance coverage. Accidents involving these drivers can be complex.

The team of lawyers at Diamond and Diamond have experience handling car accident cases with uninsured drivers or drivers with suspended licences. Call our 24/7 injury hotline at 1-800-567-HURT or visit our website to speak to someone now. We offer free consultations and case evaluations.

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