20 Tips: How Many Points can a CDL Driver Have in New York? | Law Office of James Medows

20 Jun 20 Tips: How Many Points can a CDL Driver Have in New York?

20 Tips: How Many Points can a CDL Driver Have in New York?

Many CDL holders wonder if they can accrue points on their CDL if they are convicted of traffic violations in New York, and this article, with the help of the excellent ny-defense.com, will look to help answer that question, and much more, through the following 20 tips.

When is a CDL required?

A Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) is required by New York State to drive a vehicle weighing more that is more than 26,000 pounds, vehicles accommodating 15 or more passengers, including buses, or any vehicle used to transport hazardous material as articulated at ny-defense.com.

Vehicle and Traffic Law 1180(g)

Vehicle and Traffic Law 1180(g) is the statute specifically for speeding in vehicles that weigh 18,000 pounds or greater. The points associated with this statute are the same for regular speeding tickets, something which is worth noting.

Points for speeding

As already mentioned and discussed at ny-defense.com, the points associated with the statute mentioned in the previous point are the same for regular speeding tickets, which are as follows:

1-10 miles an hour over the speed limit = 3 points

11-20 miles per hour over the speed limit = 4 points

21-30 mph over the speed limit = 6 points

40 mph + over the speed limit = 11 points and suspended license

Fines and points associated with VTL 1180(g) vs other types of tickets

For the most part, there is no difference between the fines and points associated with VTL 1180(g) and most other types of speeding tickets. A commercial driver who is issued a speeding ticket under VTL 1180(d) (the most common speeding ticket), VTL 1180(b) (exceeding the state limit of 55 mph), or VTL 1180 (g) could still lose his/her commercial license if it is for going 15 miles per hour or more over the limit and is the second serious violation in 3 years.

How many points to suspend a CDL license in New York?

It is worth noting that New York State’s point system affects a commercial license the same way it affects a regular license: a conviction of 11-points-worth of traffic violations within 18 months and the license is suspended. 

What if the license is issued in another state?

As pointed out by ny-defense.com, drivers whose license is issued in another state can have their right to drive in New York suspended should they be convicted of 11 points-worth of traffic violations in 18 months.

You don’t need to accumulate points to get your license suspended

It is also important to always remember that, regardless of points, a CDL holder can have his/her commercial license (not the personal license) suspended upon conviction of two or more serious traffic violations within 3 years.

Which violations are considered serious traffic violations?

If you are wondering which violations are classified as “serious traffic violations”, then according to ny-defense.com, they include:


Speeding 15 + mph over the limit

Unsafe lane changes

Traffic violations involving a fatal traffic accident

Driving a commercial vehicle without a CDL

Suspension for two serious traffic violations

Commercial drivers risk losing their license for 60 days if they are convicted of two “serious traffic violations” as described in the previous points within 3 years while operating a commercial vehicle. This includes tickets for any of the above violations.

The violations can’t happen at the same time

It is important to note that the convictions must be the result of two separate incidents. Therefore, if the two violations happen at the same time, for example, a CDL holder is pulled over and the officer issues a ticket for speeding and another for an unsafe lane change, the 60-day suspension will not be applied, as this single traffic stop will only be counted as one serious traffic violation.

Suspension for three serious traffic violations

As per ny-defense.com, if a commercial driver is convicted of 3 serious traffic violations during 3 years, the suspension will be increased to 120 days.

How long does a speeding ticket stay on your CDL?

A speeding ticket conviction can count against a commercial driver for up to 3 years, even if the state in which one is ticketed drops it from the record sooner, which is another thing worth noting as a CDL holder.

Can CDL drivers take traffic school?

As is covered over at ny-defense.com, attending traffic school is always beneficial, but it is not likely to help commercial drivers avoid a suspension or revocation of the CDL. In New York, a DMV-approved driving course will increase the point threshold needed for a suspension (it doesn’t actually eliminate the points.

Traffic school can also help reduce insurance rates

It is also important to remember that, in New York and most other states, traffic school can also help slightly reduce one’s personal auto insurance rates. This means that it only reduces one’s non-CDL auto insurance rates.

The 3-year period counts against CDL holders when it comes to traffic school

One thing that is worth noting is that federal CDL requirements look only at the number of convictions within 3 years. Since traffic schools do not change or eliminate those convictions, it is not likely to help commercial drivers avoid a suspension of the CDL.

How long do points stay on a driver’s record

According to discussions on the same at ny-defense.com, traffic violations have a statutory prescribed “point” value that stays on a driver’s record for 18 months.

License suspension hearings

If a driver’s point total reaches 11 or more points, a mandatory 31 days suspension (for first-time suspensions) will be imposed unless the driver asks for a “license suspension hearing”. At such a hearing, a driver can dispute the accuracy of the DMV’s records.

Points on one’s record and insurance rates

From discussions over at ny-defense.com, the DMV record is also checked by automobile insurance companies every time auto insurance comes up for renewal or a new insurance application is made. A moving violation on a driver’s record virtually guarantees an increase in insurance rates and depending upon how many points have been accumulated, the increase in rates can be dramatic.

The NYS assigned risk pool

Another consequence of accruing points as a CDL driver is that, if enough points have accumulated, an insurance company may refuse to renew or decline to provide a new policy. In such a case, the driver will be forced to obtain insurance through the NYS “assigned risk” pool. Insurance rates in the assigned risk pool are extremely high.

When to hire a lawyer

Many CDL drivers facing serious moving violations find that obtaining legal representation is essential to protecting their rights and obtaining the most favorable result from court proceedings. Therefore, if you are facing the threat of points to your record and even possible suspension, make sure you hire a lawyer.

Remember, the excellent ny-defense.com is here to help with your traffic tickets as a CDL driver, helping you avoid getting points onto your record.