Traffic Ticket Fines & Penalties in Arizona | DMV.ORG (2024)

Arizona Traffic Ticket Fines and Costs

Traffic ticket fines vary by violation and location. For example, the fine for speeding is not the same as the fine for improperly changing lanes; likewise, the fine for speeding might cost more or less if it's being handled on a county level than it would if it were being handled on a city level.

Check your traffic ticket for the exact fine; most AZ citations include them. If you've lost your ticket or can't find the fine, check our section on replacing lost AZ traffic tickets, or contactthe Motor Vehicle Division.

Surcharges

Other related surcharges, such as court costs, vary by court.

DUI Surcharges

DUI-related fines don't vary.

  • First DUI Offense: No less than $1,250.
  • Second/Subsequent DUI Offenses: No less than $3,250.
  • Extreme DUI (BAC 0.15% or higher) First Offense: No less than $2,500.
  • Second/Subsequent Extreme DUI Offenses: No less than $3,250.

NOTE: In addition to paying these fines, expect to face jail time, community service, alcohol programs, ignition interlock systems, and/or license suspension or revocation. Learn more about the fines and penalties associated with DUI charges in the Arizona Driver License Manual and Customer Service Guide.

Defensive Driving Program Fees

You don't have to pay your traffic ticket fine if you attend a Defensive Driving Program course for ticket dismissal and point reduction; however, you will have to pay the following costs related to enrolling in a course:

  • Court diversion fee.
  • State fee.
  • State surcharge.
  • School fee.

These fees vary by county and may be increased further due to other costs such as notary fees and collection fees. Find a complete list of exact costs at Defensive Driving: Costs to Attend School.

Pay Ticket
(Plead Guilty or No Contest)

  • Pay the fine.
  • Accumulate driving record points (sometimes leads to license suspension or revocation).
  • Pay higher auto insurance rates.
  • Possibly use Defensive Driving Program to satisfy ticket and point reduction.

Learn more about Paying your Traffic Ticket »

Fight Ticket
(Plead Not Guilty)

  • Contest the ticket during a hearing.
  • Represent yourself or hire a traffic ticket lawyer for help.
  • Possible lose the chance to plead to lesser charges.
  • Pay only attorney fees (and possibly court costs) if found not guilty.
  • Appeal the verdict, if found guilty.

Learn more about Fighting your Traffic Ticket »

Auto Insurance Rate Increase

Unless you use the Defensive Driving Program for ticket dismissal and point reduction, chances are your traffic ticket will cause a hike in your auto insurance rates.

You can avoid the rate increase by shopping for lower car insurance rates online.

AZ Traffic Ticket Penalties

AZ traffic ticket fines vary by violation and location, but penalties are the same statewide.

Arizona Point System

Each time you're convicted of a traffic violation, you receive a certain number of driving record points; points range from 2 points to 8 points, depending on the violation. Once you receive a certain number of points, you face license suspension or revocation (see below).

If you've just received a traffic ticket (and are eligible), you can enroll in a course approved by the state's Defensive Driving Program to dismiss a ticket and avoid points related to that ticket; however, those courses won't remove existing points. Sometimes, a court will order Traffic Survivor School (an entirely different program) for a driver who's close to license suspension due to point accumulation.

AZ Driver's License Suspension, Revocation, and Cancellation

Some AZ traffic violations lead to mandatory license suspension or revocation.

License Suspension: If your license is suspended, it means you temporarily lose your driving privileges. Usually, this time period only lasts as long as it takes to apply for reinstatement and pay both the reinstatement fee and license application fee, though depending on your circ*mstances it could last longer and involve additional requirements.

License Revocation: A license revocation lasts for a longer, predetermined time period. Once the period is over, the license remains revoked until an investigation determines the driver has met all requirements. Generally, a driver must pay a reinstatement fee and application fee to get his license back; he may even have to file an SR-22 Certification of Insurance and even pass the driving, vision, and road tests again.

License Cancellation: Outright canceling a driver's license in Arizona isn't common, but the MVD can do so for reasons it deems appropriate. Such reasons might include health or medical reasons or using false information to obtain the license.

Examples of reasons for license suspension and revocation include:

  • DUI-related convictions (including both drugs and alcohol).
  • Reckless driving or racing on the highway.
  • Failing to stop and render aid (if you're involved in an accident).
  • Using a vehicle to commit aggravated assault or homicide.
  • Involving a vehicle in the commission of any felony.
  • Committing a drive-by shooting.
  • Being convicted of frequent serious violations.

Remember, any traffic violation you're deemed responsible for adds points to your driving record; so, even if you're not committing any of the serious offenses above, if you're committing any offenses at all you're putting yourself at risk for suspension.

If you accumulate more than 8 points within 12 months, you will either:

  • Be required to attend Traffic Survivor School, or
  • Have your license suspended.

The MVD and court system will notify you.

Check the Arizona Driver License Manual and Customer Service Guide for full descriptions of reasons your license can be suspended or revoked, including reasons unrelated to traffic tickets and points.

Penalties for Drivers Younger than 21 Years Old

Drivers younger than 21 years old face license suspension or revocation if they are convicted of:

  • Receiving, possessing, or consuming alcohol.
  • Any violation related to drug possession.

If you're caught driving with any amount of alcohol in your system, your license could be suspended for two years.

Furthermore, a minor with a GDL faces stiff penalties for receiving any traffic conviction.

  • 1st Conviction: Mandatory Traffic Survivor School attendance.
  • 2nd Conviction: License suspension of 3 months.
  • 3rd Conviction: License suspension of 6 months.

Plus, each conviction is recorded on the teen's driving record.

The Arizona Driver License Manual and Customer Service Guide includes more details about the kinds of penalties teens and drivers younger than 21 years old face for traffic violations.

Penalties for Arizona Commercial Drivers

Remember: Notify your employer within 30 days of receiving a traffic citation. You must also notify the AZ MVD within 30 days if you received the citation in another state.

First Offenses

You might face CDL suspension if you:

  • Operate your commercial motor vehicle (CMV) with a BAC of 0.04% or higher or under the influence of any controlled substance.
  • Refuse to undergo a blood alcohol test.
  • Use the vehicle in the commission of a felony.
  • Fail to report an accident after leaving the scene.
  • Use your CMV to cause a fatality.
  • Drive your CMV with a suspended, revoked, canceled, or disqualified CDL.

If you commit:

  • Any of these offenses while operating a CMV placarded for transporting hazardous materials, you could lose your CDL for 1 year on a first conviction
  • A felony involving a controlled substance using your CMV, you could lose your CDL for life.

Second Offenses

Typically, you'll lose your Arizona CDL for life if you commit any of the above offenses a second time.

Serious Traffic Offenses

If you commit:

  • 2 serious offenses with your CMV during a period of 3 years, you can lose your CDL for at least 60 days.
  • 3 serious offenses with your CMV during a period of 3 years, you can lose your CDL for at least 120 days.

Generally, serious offenses include:

  • Driving 15 MPH or more over the speed limit.
  • Driving in a reckless or careless manner.
  • Changing lanes improperly or erratically.
  • Driving too closely behind another vehicle.
  • Operating a CMV without obtaining, or without having present, a CDL.
  • Operating a CMV without the properly classed CDL.
  • Committing an offense with your CMV that involves a fatal traffic accident.

Additional Offenses

You can lose your AZ CDL for other offenses, too, such as violating an out-of-service order or committing a railroad-highway grade crossing violation.

For more information, contact your local MVD CDL office for a copy of the CDL handbook.

    • Suspended License
    • Accident Guide
    • Traffic Tickets
      • Ticket Fines and Penalties
      • Traffic Ticket Attorneys
      • When to Hire a Traffic Ticket Lawyer
      • Pay Traffic Ticket
      • Lost Traffic Ticket
      • Fight Traffic Ticket
      • When to Fight a Traffic Ticket
      • Traffic Ticket FAQ
      • Traffic Ticket Glossary
      • Driving Records
    • Defensive Driving
    • Attorneys
    • DMV Point System
    • Traffic Safety Laws
    • Driving Distractions
    • Driving Records

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As an enthusiast with a deep understanding of traffic laws and fines, let me provide a comprehensive overview of the concepts mentioned in the article on Arizona Traffic Ticket Fines and Penalties.

  1. Traffic Ticket Fines:

    • Fines vary based on the violation and location.
    • Examples include fines for speeding and improperly changing lanes.
    • Fines may differ on the county and city levels.
  2. Surcharges:

    • Court costs and other surcharges vary by court.
    • DUI-related fines have set amounts:
      • First DUI Offense: No less than $1,250.
      • Extreme DUI (BAC 0.15% or higher) First Offense: No less than $2,500.
  3. Defensive Driving Program Fees:

    • Attend a Defensive Driving Program to dismiss a ticket and reduce points.
    • Costs include court diversion fee, state fee, state surcharge, and school fee.
    • Fees vary by county and may include additional costs like notary and collection fees.
  4. Options for Dealing with Traffic Tickets:

    • Pay Ticket (Plead Guilty or No Contest):

      • Pay the fine.
      • Accumulate driving record points.
      • Pay higher auto insurance rates.
      • Defensive Driving Program can be used for ticket dismissal and point reduction.
    • Fight Ticket (Plead Not Guilty):

      • Contest the ticket during a hearing.
      • Represent yourself or hire a traffic ticket lawyer.
      • Pay only attorney fees if found not guilty.
      • Appeal the verdict if found guilty.
  5. Auto Insurance Rate Increase:

    • Traffic tickets can lead to higher auto insurance rates.
    • Defensive Driving Program can help avoid rate increases.
  6. Arizona Point System:

    • Traffic violations result in driving record points (2 to 8 points based on the violation).
    • Accumulating a certain number of points leads to license suspension or revocation.
    • Defensive Driving Program can dismiss a ticket and avoid points.
  7. AZ Driver's License Suspension, Revocation, and Cancellation:

    • DUI-related convictions, reckless driving, and other serious violations can lead to suspension or revocation.
    • License cancellation is rare but possible for various reasons.
    • Points accumulation within 12 months can lead to Traffic Survivor School or license suspension.
  8. Penalties for Drivers Younger than 21 Years Old:

    • Alcohol-related violations lead to license suspension.
    • Graduated Driver License (GDL) holders face penalties for traffic convictions.
  9. Penalties for Arizona Commercial Drivers:

    • CDL suspension or revocation for offenses like DUI, felony involvement, and serious traffic offenses.
    • Second offenses may result in a lifetime CDL loss.
    • Serious offenses include speeding, reckless driving, and more.

This overview covers the key concepts related to Arizona traffic ticket fines, penalties, and related topics, showcasing a depth of knowledge in traffic laws and regulations.

Traffic Ticket Fines & Penalties in Arizona | DMV.ORG (2024)

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