Ticket Fines and Penalties in Washington DC
DC traffic tickets vary by offense, but they do stay the same throughout the District. Check your citation for a fine amount.
Can’t find your ticket? Refer to Lost DC Traffic Ticket.
Court Costs and Other Surcharges
Typically, the Adjudication Services Office doesn’t charge “court costs,” but you will pay financial penalties if you’re late paying your ticket fine or scheduling a hearing.
For example, if you don’t respond within 30 calendar days of receiving the ticket, your penalty fine is the same amount as your original ticket fine. This can increase if you still haven't responded within 60 days.
(Plead Guilty or No Contest)
- Pay the fine; online if applicable.
- Deal with violation-related penalties (sometimes license suspension or revocation.
- Experience auto insurance rates increase.
- Possibly enroll in traffic school for point reduction.
Learn more about
Paying Your Traffic Ticket »
(Plead Not Guilty)
- Enter a not guilty plea.
- Prepare for your hearing, possibly with help from a traffic ticket attorney.
- Suffer no penalties if found not guilty (except applicable court/attorney fees).
- Appeal the guilty verdict (if applicable).
Learn more about
Fighting Your Traffic Ticket »
Auto Insurance Rate Increase
The Adjudication Services Office won’t order higher insurance rates if you plead or are found guilty, but your insurance provider likely will.
The DMV will suspend or revoke your driver’s license for certain moving and non-moving offenses.
DC Driver’s License Suspension, Revocation, and Cancellation
License Suspension: You temporarily lose your driving privileges. Suspension may last a specific amount of time, until you meet reinstatement requirements, or both.
License Revocation: You temporarily lose your driving privileges; generally for a period longer than a suspension. Revocations are similar to suspensions in that you may have to wait a certain time period, until you meet reinstatement requirements, or both before you can get your license back.
License Cancellation: Typically, cancellations are reserved for instances when a driver provides false information in order to obtain a license, or the court or DMV determines a person is no longer fit to drive.
Most suspensions and revocations are related to an accumulation of violations, major moving violations, or violations unrelated to traffic convictions.
- Accumulating 10 to 12 driving record points (see below).
- DUI- or DWI-related violations.
- Reckless driving.
- Failing to respond to your traffic ticket on time.
- Failing to pay child support.
Point Accumulation Suspensions and Revocations
The DMV will:
- Suspend your license if you accumulate 10 or 11 points.
- Revoke your license if you accumulate 12 or more points.
Your Order of Suspension or Revocation will outline the details, including the length of suspension or revocation and what you must do to reinstate your privileges.
Penalties for Drivers Younger than 21
The DMV will suspend your license for 90 days if you’re caught driving with any measurable amount of alcohol in your system.
Otherwise, regular traffic convictions prevent you from moving forward with the GRAD Program on time.
If you have a learner’s permit:
- You can’t move on to the provisional license if you’ve received any pointable traffic violation within 6 months of the graduation date.
- You face a 90-day license suspension and reinstatement fee payment if you accumulate 8 or more points.
If you have a provisional license, you can’t receive a full driver’s license if you’ve received any pointable traffic violation within 12 months of the graduation date.Other Topics in This Section