Point Suspension Law
Colorado’s point suspension law (statute 42-2-123, CRS) requires a suspension of a driver’s license under the following circumstances:
A. Adult Drivers (age 21 and older) with:
- 12 points or more within any one-year period, or
- 18 points or more within any two-year period
B. Provisional Drivers (age 18 through 20) with:
- 9 points or more within any one-year period, or
- 12 points or more within any two-year period, or
- 14 points since the lifetime of the provisional license
C. Minor Drivers (age 16 through 17) with:
- 6 points or more within any one-year period, or
- 7 points or more within any two-year period.
If you choose to request a formal hearing, you meet with a hearing officer at the DMV. You have the right to have a defense lawyer with you at the hearing. A transcript of the hearing will be available for appeal purposes. A hearing officer will determine the length and terms of suspension. The hearing may result in up to a one-year suspension with no probationary driving privileges being authorized. You may request a probationary license for a points suspension. A defense lawyer can help make the argument for why you deserve a restricted license.
Terms of Probationary Licenses
A probationary license is based on your driving needs. If you choose a suspension with restricted driving, you must be prepared to explain your reasons for driving.
The probationary license will be cancelled if you are convicted of any traffic offenses you receive while driving with the license.
Criteria for Length of Suspension
The hearing officer will consider any of the following factors to determine whether to shorten the suspension period or grant a probationary license:
- evidence that you complete a defensive driving course and have not acquired any convictions since completing that course;
- any recommendation made by a court at the time of the conviction which indicates that a shorter term of suspension would be appropriate
- any fact showing that you are not a risk to public safety
the absence of any aggravating factors in your driving record (such as serious speeding
offenses, accidents, reckless or careless driving)
- any evidence that you have suffered undue delay with regard to initiating the suspension proceedings or have been harmed as a result of errors in record-keeping by the department
- any other factors which you submit in mitigation
You are eligible for reinstatement of your regular license the day that your suspension period ends. To reinstate, you must pay a $95 reinstatement fee and provide proof of insurance. If you do not reinstate on the date you are eligible, the suspension continues until you get reinstated.
If you are caught driving without reinstating, you are subject to the following penalties: 1) one-year extension of suspension with no driving, 2) imprisonment in jail for not less than 30 days 3) fines not less than $500.
Frequently Asked Questions about Probationary Licenses
If I have a probationary license, can I drive to the grocery store, to get gas, the cleaners, or other needs on the way to one of the allowed restrictions?
These stops are allowed only if reasonably on the way and within any time restriction specified. Abusing the restrictions will put the probationary license at risk.
What about an emergency, the kids get sick, etc.?
Again, driving outside the restrictions may place cancellation of the probationary license at risk. If your license is confiscated by a police officer because he or she believes you drove outside the restriction, you may petition for a hearing on the matter with the DMV hearings section.
In the event that I change my job or my driving needs change, do I need to have my probationary license changed?
Yes, any change in your driving needs must be reflected on the probationary license.
What will happen if I am unable to reinstate on the day my suspension ends?
The suspension continues until you reinstate. Reinstatement occurs only when you have paid a $60.00 reinstatement fee and provided evidence of insurance to the DMV. Once reinstated, DMV issues you an order of reinstatement and returns your driver’s license.
When I reinstate, do I start over with a “clean driving record?”
Reinstatement only restores your regular driving privileges. It does not clear your driving record. Existing points on your record along with any new points acquired after your suspension may cause a new point suspension.