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Indiana Auto Driving Laws

Driver License Suspension, Revocation and Invalidation

A licensed driver can lose his or her driving privileges for violating Indiana traffic laws and other laws of this state. This article summarizes the ways in which driving privileges can be lost.

Driving While Suspended

Under Indiana driving law, if you are convicted of driving while suspended, the violation carries a mandatory minimum suspension of ninety (90) days and not more than two (2) years, which runs consecutively with any current suspensions.

Habitual Traffic Violators

1. Summary: Indiana's Habitual Traffic Violator law provides serious penalties or persons who have committed repeat offenses of Indiana traffic laws over a ten (10) year period.

The Bureau of Motor Vehicles will use the criteria listed below to determine if a driver qualifies as a Habitual Traffic Violator.

2. Qualifying as a Habitual Traffic Violator: Under Indiana driving law, a habitual traffic violator is any person who, within a ten-year period collects convictions for violations of Indiana traffic laws of the number and type outlined below:

a. Two Serious Indiana Driving Law Offenses Resulting in Injury or Death (Ten-Year Suspension), including:

(i) reckless homicide;

(ii) voluntary or involuntary manslaughter resulting from the operation of a motor vehicle;

(iii) a driver involved in an accident that results in death or injury who fails to stop at the scene of the accident;

(iv) operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated resulting in death; and

(v) operating a motor vehicle with a BAC of 0.08% or more resulting in death.

b. Three Major Indiana Driving Law Offenses (Ten-Year suspension), including:

(i) driving while intoxicated or with a BAC of 0.08% or more;

(ii) driving while suspended, when the suspension was the result of a criminal act involving a motor vehicle;

(iii) operating a motor vehicle without ever having obtained a license to do so;

(iv) reckless driving;

(v) criminal recklessness involving a motor vehicle;

(vi) drag racing or engaging in a speed contest;

(vii) leaving the scene of an accident or failing to make an accident report;

(viii) any felony under the Indiana motor vehicle statutes or any felony in the commission of which a motor vehicle is used; and

(ix) any of the offenses listed above in subsection a.

c. Ten Moving Violations of Indiana Driving Law, one (1) of which is a Serious or Major Offense listed in subsection a. or b.:

In accordance with Indiana driving law, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles will suspend a person's driver license for five (5) years if that person accumulates ten (10) moving violations of Indiana traffic laws in a ten-year period, one of which is a serious offense listed in subsection a., or a major violation listed in subsection b.

For example, a person with nine (9) speeding tickets and one reckless driving conviction in a ten-year period will be subject to a (5) year suspension as a habitual traffic violator.

3. Operating a Vehicle while Suspended as a Habitual Traffic Violator:

a. Under Indiana driving law, operating a vehicle while suspended as a habitual traffic violator is a FELONY, the most serious type of criminal offense.

Indiana traffic laws require that, upon receiving a conviction for operating a vehicle while suspended as a habitual traffic violator, the BMV must suspend the person's driving privileges for life or as ordered by the court.

b. After Certain Moving Violations: When the Bureau of Motor Vehicles receives a report from a court of a judgment or conviction for any moving violation for which points are assessed by the Bureau of Motor Vehicles a certificate of compliance form is sent to the driver at the address shown on his or her official driving record in the following instances:

(i) When the Bureau of Motor Vehicles receives notification of a moving traffic violation and points are assessed, and the driver has at least two (2) other moving traffic violations on which points were assessed within a twelve-month period;

(ii) When the moving violation is a felony or a misdemeanor; or

(iii) When the driver has been previously suspended for failure to carry insurance. The driver has the same forty (40) day period to have the information completed and sent back to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles to avoid suspension described in Section 1.

Accumulation of Traffic Offenses

1. The Bureau of Motor Vehicles Driver Improvement Program: In accordance with Indiana driving law, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles administers a driver improvement program that identifies individuals who accumulate a number of moving violations in a short period of time.

The Bureau of Motor Vehicles has rules to assess a point value for each conviction of a moving violation under Indiana traffic laws. The point value relates to the seriousness of the offense in posing a risk to traffic safety. Point values for offenses range from two (2) to eight (8) points depending on the violation.

For example, a speeding offense less than 15 miles an hour over the posted limit is a two (2) point violation, while a conviction for operating while intoxicated is an eight (8) point violation. Points stay active on your driving record, for two (2) years from the conviction date of the citation for a violation of Indiana traffic laws.

2. The Administrative Hearing: Under Indiana driving law, drivers who collect seventeen (17) or more active points during a two (2) year period will be notified and required to attend an administrative hearing.

At the hearing, the presiding officer will make a determination whether to place the driver on probation; suspend the person's driving privileges for a period of not less than thirty (30) days up to the maximum one (1) year; or impose additional requirements beyond the order of probation or suspension such as requiring attendance at a driving improvement program.

3. Failure to Appear for Administrative Hearing: Under Indiana driving law, if you fail to appear for the administrative hearing at the time and place designated, the hearing will be held in your absence, and a recommendation will be made by the administrative hearing officer.

Failure to Attend a Mandatory Driver Awareness Course

In accordance with Indiana driving law, the driving privileges of a person who is ordered by a court to attend a Bureau of Motor Vehicle's approved driver awareness course or who is required to attend the course because of committing, within a 12-month period, two (2) or more traffic offenses which result in convictions for violation of Indiana traffic laws, will be suspended if the individual does not complete the class in the time required by the Bureau of Motor Vehicles.

Failure to complete the course or pay the course fee will result in invalidation of the person's driver license.

In accordance with Indiana driving law, notification of the driver awareness course requirement is made through the mail. If you move, you must notify the Bureau of Motor Vehicles so that a notification can reach you and to avoid license invalidation or suspension.

For More Information

Indiana Department of Transportation

(Source: StateDrivingLaw.com)


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