In earlier posts, I’ve talked about the different potential consequences when CDL drivers get speeding tickets or other moving violations. One thing I mentioned is that for some traffic violations, a CDL driver can attend traffic school to avoid having points reported on their driving record. As a CDL driver knows, keeping points or violations off your record can mean the difference between driving and providing for your family and being unable to pay your bills.
In this post, I want to expand on your options as a CDL driver for going to traffic school in the event you have a traffic violation.
First things first, the answer to the question, “Can CDL drivers go to traffic school?” is: maybe. It depends on the situation and the state. As with everything in the law, there are variations depending on the state where the citation was given and the type of traffic violation. I’ll get into that in more detail a little bit later.
But first, what is traffic school? Generally, traffic school is offered to drivers to reduce or avoid more severe penalties for traffic violations, or in some cases as a punishment for traffic violations. There are many different options for completing traffic school, including traditional in-person classes as well as online versions. They are generally short classes. For example, many online traffic schools can be completed in six to eight hours. A traffic school needs to be approved and registered by the state in which it’s being offered.
CDL Drivers Attend Traffic School to Reduce Penalties from Traffic Violations
Different Rules from Coast to Coast
Ok, so now we’re all on the same page about what a traffic school is. Let’s talk more about how CDL drivers can use traffic school to avoid points on their licenses. In an earlier post, I discussed what it means if a CDL holder gets a traffic violation while driving their personal car (as a reminder, yes, your CDL record can be affected even if you get a violation while using your personal vehicle). I mention this because it makes a difference as to whether or not a CDL driver can go to traffic school to avoid a traffic violation. In many states, if you hold a CDL and received a violation in your personal vehicle, you may be eligible to attend traffic school. The violation can’t be a serious violation (things like speeding more than 15 MPH over the limit, reckless driving, or any violations involving drugs or alcohol). As long as you haven’t had a serious violation, you may be eligible to attend traffic school to keep the violation from hitting your record. For example, in California if you receive a violation while operating your personal vehicle, you can complete traffic school to remove points that were added to your driving record. However, the official records will still show the violations, which could still affect your insurance rates and/or your ability to get driving jobs. On the other hand, in a state like Florida, as a CDL driver you won’t be able to avoid points on your driving record through traffic school (an exception could be if the traffic school is ordered by a court).
Traffic school may be an option for CDL drivers to avoid having points on their driving records. But, since rules can vary widely from one state to the next and one situation to the next, it’s generally a good idea to get in touch with legal service providers to help you assess and understand your options. ORDP offers a membership-based program that helps you access legal expertise, resolution of traffic violations, as well as other fantastic benefits like discounts.
About Bryan Shannon
Bryan Shannon is Managing Director of ORDP. His strong track record of helping carriers manage their fleet operations, grow market shares, and increase revenue is backed by years of experience in the trucking industry.
ORDP’s CDL Driver Protection Legal service finds attorneys for CDL drivers nationwide to resolve traffic violations and DOT compliance-related issues impacting the bottom line of commercial fleets. ORDP’s CDL protection comes with built-in trucking benefits that help carriers attract and retain top talent and improve employee performance.