When a cyclist in California gets a ticket, he or she has to go to court and pay a fine just like a motorist. This is because California law says that a bicycle is a vehicle for purposes of traffic codes and rights-of-way. But what about DMV points?
Up to the Courts
Fortunately, or unfortunately, the law allows the court to determine whether it sends notice to the DMV of a traffic code violation when a cyclist gets a ticket.
CVC 1803 says that the clerk of court shall report traffic violations to the DMV except it’s not required for certain violations, and those received while riding a bicycle are not required.
The wording “not required” is key because it doesn’t say that’s it not allowed, just not required. So, the clerk of court for each court has the option of sending the report to the DMV.
Most traffic violations give one point on the person’s license with some like DUI, felony hit and run and vehicular manslaughter giving two points. A driver can get their license suspended under certain point accumulations:
- 4 in 1 year,
- 6 in 2 years, or
- 8 in 3 years.
In California, insurance companies are allowed to raise the rates for drivers based on accidents and DMV license points, so if the bicycle ticket is reported to the DMV, then the person’s auto insurance can go up even though the violation was not while driving a car.
Some clerks aren’t aware that they are allowed not to send the report for a bicycle violation, so the defendant can ask the court to not sent the report and it’s possible that the points will not be added.
Injured in a Bike Accident? Contact a Specialist.
Bay Area Bicycle Law works with clients all over the State of California and is one of the state’s only personal injury law firms working exclusively with injured cyclists. We handle cases in your area, and there are many benefits to working with a specialist.
Contact us today for a free consultation by email or by calling 866-bicycle-law (866-242-9253). Years of advocacy for bicycle crash victims have seasoned our attorneys with the necessary skills to handle bicycle accident cases with the utmost level of professional expertise. We will always offer you legal advice which is in your best interest.