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Ticket Fines and Penalties in Colorado

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CO Traffic Ticket Fines and Costs

Traffic fines in Colorado vary by county, court and even by case. This means, for example, that a fine for illegal passing in Jefferson county may not be the same as in Gilpin county.

Check your citation for the fine amount. If you decide to challenge the ticket, the presiding judge may, depending on the outcome of your case, raise or lower the initial fine posted on your citation.

For more information regarding fines, contact the county court listed on your ticket.

Pay Ticket
(Plead Guilty or No Contest)

  • Pay the fine
  • Option to plea bargain penalties
  • Receive points on your driving record (could lead to license suspension/revocation)
  • Incur possible jump in auto insurance rates

Learn more about
Paying your Traffic Ticket »

Fight Ticket
(Plead Not Guilty)

  • Challenge traffic ticket in court
  • Represent yourself or hire an attorney
  • Possibly lose option to plea bargain for lesser penalties
  • Have charges dismissed if found not guilty, but still pay court and attorney fees
  • Be charged guilty and pay ticket fine, court and lawyer fees

Learn more about
Fighting your Traffic Ticket »

Increased Auto Insurance Rates

Depending on the severity of your traffic infraction and whether it gets you added points on your diving record, you might see a leap in your auto insurance rates. If your premiums exceed your budget, take the time to compare auto insurance rates online to quickly find the best deal.

Colorado Traffic Ticket Penalties

Colorado Point System

Each time you're convicted of a traffic violation, Colorado's Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) adds points to your driving record. If you accrue a certain number of points within a designated period of the time, the MVD suspends your license.

Point totals resulting in suspensions follow:

Minor Driver Under 18 years old

  • 6 points in any 12 months
  • 7 points or more for the duration of the license

Minor Driver Between 18 and 21 years old.

  • 9 points in any 12 months
  • 12 points in any 24 months
  • 14 points during the course of the license

Adult Driver over 21 years old

  • 12 points in any 12 months
  • 18 points in any 24 months

The points have staying power. If, for example, you had your license suspended for accumulating 12 points in 12 months, reinstatement will not cleanse your record of the points. The points will remain on your driving record.

For more information, read our page on the Colorado point system.

CO Driver's License Suspension, Revocation and Cancellation

The terms associated with the loss of driving privileges in Colorado are defined as such:

License Suspension―A temporary withdrawal of driving privileges; a valid license may be reissued upon reinstatement
License Revocation―A license is rendered invalid and cannot be reissued; reinstatement requires passing the written and driving tests again
License Denial―A restraint action when no valid license exists at the time of restraint
License Cancellation―A Colorado driver's license is voided

In addition to excessive point totals, you could also have your license suspended, revoked or canceled for the following violations:

  • Refusing a sobriety test
  • Altering or defacing your driver's license
  • DWI conviction
  • Leaving the scene of an accident without stopping, exchanging information and rendering aid
  • Lending your driver's license to someone else
  • Failing to pay a traffic violation fine
  • Failing to appear for a reexamination mandated by the MVD
  • Failing to provide proof of car insurance
  • Getting convicted of manslaughter stemming from a motor vehicle accident

Penalties for Drivers Younger Than 21 Years Old

Colorado maintains zero tolerance when it comes to underage drinking and driving. Your license will be revoked for any of the following-alcohol related offenses:

  • Possession of alcohol, even if driving is not involved
  • Registering a BAC of 0.02%
  • DUI conviction

Your parents or guardian also reserve the right to cancel your driver's license if you're younger than 18 years old.

Penalties are not limited to loss of driving privileges. Drivers younger than 18 years old may be assigned to community service for violating seat belt laws and passenger restrictions.

Penalties for Commercial Drivers

You must notify your employer within 30 days of being convicted of a moving traffic violation, regardless of what type of vehicle you were driving. Even if the violation occurred out of state, you must still submit notification.

Mandatory Disqualifying Offenses

Regardless of vehicle type, your commercial driver's license (CDL) will be disqualified if convicted of:

  • Refusing to take a chemical test
  • DUI or DWA
  • Leaving the scene of an accident
  • Testing for a blood alcohol count (BAC) of 0.04% or higher

Your CDL will be disqualified for one year for a first offense, or life for a second offense.

Serious Offenses

These offenses include:

  • Driving 15 MPH over the speed limit
  • Reckless driving
  • Improper lane change
  • Driving too closely
  • Driving a commercial vehicle without a CDL

Your CDL will be revoked for 60 days if convicted of any of the listed offenses for a 2nd time within 3 years, and 120 days if convicted a 3rd time.

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