Ticket Fines and Penalties in Hawaii
Hawaii traffic ticket fines vary by violation, but because the fines are set by state legislation, they are they same throughout the state. That means you’ll pay the same for a specific ticket in county as you would in another county.
Most HI traffic tickets include the exact fine and any other costs you’re expected to pay if you plead guilty, or if you’re found guilty. If you can’t find your citation, our Lost Traffic Ticket section can help you retrieve missing traffic ticket information. You also can contact your TVB for details specific to your traffic ticket.
Court Costs and Other Surcharges
Generally, court costs are the same throughout the state, too. Note that court costs aren’t always necessary, and when they are, your judge makes you aware if them. For more information, contact your court.
Similar to traffic ticket fines and other costs, fines related to DWI charges are the same throughout the state, too.
NOTE: Because DWI charges are considered “traffic crimes” and not “traffic infractions,” many drivers traffic ticket lawyers to help them navigate the legal process―including dealing with all the other penalties associated with DWI.
Learn more about HI DWI charges, fines, and penalties in the Hawaii Driver’s Manual.
- Pay the fine.
- Go to court (if your citation indicates).
- Have the violation show up on your traffic abstract.
- Potential for higher auto insurance rates.
Learn more about
Paying your Traffic Ticket »
(Plead Not Guilty or Admit Litigated)
- Contest the ticket during a hearing or in writing.
- Admit guilt but explain your actions (if you choose this option).
- Defend yourself or hire an attorney to represent you.
- Potentially lose plea bargain options.
- Pay only any applicable court cost and attorney fees if found not guilty.
- Appeal the guilty verdict (if applicable).
Learn more about
Fighting your Traffic Ticket »
Auto Insurance Rate Increase
Some drivers have to pay additional costs related traffic convictions, and these costs are in the form of higher auto insurance rates.
If you plead or are found guilty of a traffic violation, talk with your insurance provider about how the conviction might affect your current rates. Find out your rates are going up? Start shopping for lower rates online.
Like fines and some other surcharges, traffic ticket penalties stay the same throughout the state.
Hawaii Point System
Hawaii doesn’t use a point system anymore, which means if you plead or are found guilty of a traffic violation, no points will show up on your driving record.
However, that doesn’t mean the violation isn’t recorded. Each conviction shows up on your driving abstract (or driving record), and Hawaii isn’t the only entity that has access to your past driving behavior: Potential employers and auto insurance providers can access it, too.
Check our section on Driving Records in Hawaii to learn more about your driving record and how you can obtain a copy.
Hawaii Driver’s License Suspension, Revocation, and Cancellation
Drivers can lose their driving privileges to suspension or revocation for certain violations.
License Suspension: When a driver’s license is suspended, it means he can’t operate a motor vehicle for a certain (usually predetermined) amount of time. Generally, license suspensions span from 90 days to 1 year, but the judge or driver licensing agency will provide a time period specific to the situation. Once the time period is up, the driver can apply for license reinstatement.
License Revocation: Generally, in Hawaii “license revocation” means “permanent loss of driving privileges.” Some cases might have extenuating circumstances, but everything is up to the judge and driver licensing agency.
NOTE: When we refer to a provisional license being revoked (below), this isn’t a permanent loss.
For now, understand that you can lose your driving privileges for:
- Leaving the scene of an accident.
- Reckless driving.
- DWI-related offenses, regardless of the offense number.
Penalties for Drivers Younger than 21
It’s illegal for underage drives to operate a motor vehicle with a alcohol in their system.
Of course, provisional license holders face penalties for violating the conditions of their licenses, as well.
Check out the Hawaii Driver’s Manual for more details about young drivers.
Penalties for Hawaii Commercial Drivers
Like most states, Hawaii requires commercial motor vehicle (CMV) operators to notify their employers after receiving a traffic ticket, and their local motor vehicle licensing agency if the ticket was obtained in another jurisdiction.
Your CDL will be suspended for 1 year if you:
- Operate your CMV under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Leave the scene of an accident in which you and your CMV were involved.
- Commit a felony with your CMV.
Note that if you:
- Commit any of these offenses while operating a CMV placarded for transporting hazardous materials, you’ll lose your CDL for 3 years for a first offense and life for a second offense.
- Commit a felony involving a controlled substance using your CMV, you’ll lose your CDL for life.
Committing any of the above offenses a second time results in lifetime loss of CDL privileges.
Serious Traffic Offenses
Examples of serious traffic infractions for CMV operators in Hawaii include:
- Excessive speeding, which is driving 15 miles over the posted speed limit.
- Reckless or careless driving.
- Changing lanes erratically or improperly.
- Following another vehicle too closely.
- Any violation involving a fatal accident and your CMV.
If you commit:
- 2 serious offenses in 3 years, you can lose your CDL for 60 days.
- 3 serious offenses in 3 years, you can lose your CDL for 120 days.
Refer to Section One of the Hawaii Commercial Driver License Manual for more information about CDL holders and penalties.Other Topics in This Section