2010 Georgia Code
TITLE 40 - MOTOR VEHICLES AND TRAFFIC
CHAPTER 5 - DRIVERS' LICENSES
ARTICLE 3 - CANCELLATION, SUSPENSION, AND REVOCATION OF LICENSES
§ 40-5-57 - Suspension or revocation of license of habitually negligent or dangerous driver; point system

O.C.G.A. 40-5-57 (2010)
40-5-57. Suspension or revocation of license of habitually negligent or dangerous driver; point system


(a) The State of Georgia considers dangerous and negligent drivers to be a direct and immediate threat to the welfare and safety of the general public, and it is in the best interests of the citizens of Georgia immediately to remove such drivers from the highways of this state. Therefore, the department is authorized to suspend the license of a driver without a preliminary hearing upon a showing by the records of the department or other sufficient evidence that the licensee is a habitually dangerous or negligent driver of a motor vehicle, such fact being established by the point system in subsection (b) of this Code section.

(b) For the purpose of identifying habitually dangerous or negligent drivers and habitual or frequent violators of traffic regulations governing the movement of vehicles, the department shall assess points, as provided in subsection (c) of this Code section, for convictions of violations of the provisions of Chapter 6 of this title, of violations of lawful ordinances adopted by local authorities regulating the operation of motor vehicles, and of offenses committed in other states which if committed in this state would be grounds for such assessment. Notice of each assessment of points may be given, but the absence of notice shall not affect any suspension made pursuant to this Code section. No points shall be assessed for violating a provision of state law or municipal ordinance regulating standing, parking, equipment, size, and weight. The department is required to suspend the license of a driver, without preliminary hearing, when his driving record identifies him as a habitually dangerous or negligent driver or as a habitual or frequent violator under this subsection.
(c)(1)(A) Except as provided in subparagraph (C) of this paragraph, the points to be assessed for each offense shall be as provided in the following schedule:
Aggressive driving...............................................6 points
Reckless driving.................................................4 points
Unlawful passing of a school bus.................................6 points
Improper passing on a hill or a curve............................4 points
Exceeding the speed limit by more than 14 miles per hour but less than
19 miles per hour.............................................2 points
Exceeding the speed limit by 19 miles per hour or more but less than 24
miles per hour................................................3 points
Exceeding the speed limit by 24 miles per hour or more but less than 34
miles per hour................................................4 points
Exceeding the speed limit by 34 miles per hour or more...........6 points
Disobedience of any traffic-control device or traffic officer....3 points
Too fast for conditions..........................................0 points
Possessing an open container of an alcoholic beverage while driving.....
.......................................................................2 points
Failure to adequately secure a load, except fresh farm produce,
resulting in loss of such load onto the roadway which results in an
accident......................................................2 points
Violation of child safety restraint requirements, first offense...1 point
Violation of child safety restraint requirements, second or subsequent
offense.......................................................2 points
Violation of usage of wireless telecommunications device requirements...
.......................................................................1 point
Operating a vehicle while text messaging..........................1 point
All other moving traffic violations which are not speed limit violations
.......................................................................3 points

(B) The commissioner shall suspend the driver's license of any person who has accumulated a violation point count of 15 or more points in any consecutive 24 month period, as measured from the dates of previous arrests for which convictions were obtained to the date of the most current arrest for which a conviction is obtained. A second or subsequent plea of nolo contendere, within the preceding five years, as measured from the dates of previous arrests for which pleas of nolo contendere were accepted to the date of the most current arrest for which a plea of nolo contendere is accepted, to a charge of committing an offense listed in this subsection shall be considered a conviction for the purposes of this Code section. At the end of the period of suspension, the violation point count shall be reduced to zero points.

(C) A court may order a person to attend a driver improvement course for any violation for which points are assessed against a driver's license under this subsection or may accept the attendance by a person at a driver improvement clinic after the issuance of a citation for such offense and prior to such person's appearance before the court, in which event the court shall reduce the fine assessed against such person by 20 percent, and no points shall be assessed by the department against such driver. The disposition and court order shall be reported to the department and shall be placed on the motor vehicle record with a zero point count. This plea may be accepted by the court once every five years as measured from date of arrest to date of arrest.

(2) Any points assessed against an individual for exceeding the speed limit shall be deducted from that individual's accumulated violation point count and the uniform traffic citation issued therefor shall be removed from the individual's record if:

(A) The points were assessed based on the use of a radar speed detection device by a county or municipality during a period of time when the commissioner has determined that such county or municipality was operating a radar speed detection device in violation of Chapter 14 of this title, relating to the use of radar speed detection devices; and

(B) The commissioner has suspended or revoked the radar speed detection device permit of such county or municipality pursuant to Code Section 40-14-11.

(d) Any person who has such points assessed against him as to require the suspension of his license pursuant to subsection (a) or (b) of this Code section shall have his license suspended as follows:

(1) Upon a first assessment of the requisite points, the period of suspension shall be one year, provided that at any time after completion of the requirements set forth in Code Section 40-5-84, such person may apply to the department for the return of his license;

(2) For a second assessment of the requisite points within five years, as measured from the dates of previous arrests for which convictions were obtained to the date of the most current arrest for which a conviction is obtained, the period of suspension shall be three years, provided that at any time after completion of the requirements set forth in Code Section 40-5-84, such person may apply to the department for the return of his license; and

(3) For a third assessment of requisite points within five years, as measured from the dates of previous arrests for which convictions were obtained to the date of the most current arrest for which a conviction is obtained, such person shall have his license suspended for a period of two years. Such person shall not be eligible for early return of his license or for a limited driving permit as provided in Code Section 40-5-64 during such two-year period.

(e) The periods of suspension provided for in this Code section shall begin on the date the license is surrendered to and received by the department, from the date a license is surrendered to a court under any provision of this chapter, or on the date that the department processes the citation or conviction, whichever date shall first occur. If the license cannot be surrendered to the department, the period of suspension may begin on the date set forth in a sworn affidavit setting forth the date and reasons for such impossibility, if the department shall have sufficient evidence to believe that the date set forth in such affidavit is true; in the absence of such evidence, the date of receipt of such affidavit shall be controlling.

(f) In all cases in which the department may return a license to a driver prior to the termination of the full period of suspension, the department may require such tests of driving skill and knowledge as it determines to be proper, and the department's discretion shall be guided by the driver's past driving record and performance, and the driver shall pay the fee provided for in Code Section 40-5-84 for the return of his or her license.
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