If you have a Maine driver’s license and recently received a New York traffic ticket, here is what you need to know.
New York and Maine are both signatories of the Driver’s License Compact, so they share driver information with each another. That means if you get a traffic ticket in NY but hold a Maine driver’s license, ME will be notified about the ticket you received.
Potential Consequences of a New York Traffic Ticket
Unfortunately, lots of drivers fail to understand that the tickets they get in NY will follow them home one way or another.
To help clarify misconceptions, we did the research and are providing you with the most up-to-date information on the subject.
Maine will not assess demerit points on your license for out-of-state traffic violations. However, being convicted of or pleading guilty to an out of state traffic ticket will cause it to go on your ME driving record, which carries its own consequences.
Not only does Maine share and receive driving data from other states like New York, but it also records each and every out-of-state traffic conviction you receive on your driving record. That means your auto insurance carrier can easily access your conviction record and will likely raise your rates accordingly.
Fines & Surcharges
Also, there is no escaping the fine and surcharge for your NY traffic ticket.
As an out-of-state driver, it is quite common for NY to issue the maximum fine for your ticket. It seems the state expects you to give up and pay the ticket instead of traveling back to court or hiring an attorney to fight it for you.
Driver Responsibility Assessment
Another hidden cost of a New York traffic ticket is the Driver Responsibility Assessment (DRA).
The DRA is a second and separate fine, not stated on your citation, that the New York Department of Motor Vehicles will issue a driver who accumulates 6 NY points or more.
This DMV penalty applies even for out of state drivers and even when points do not transfer.
The penalty works like this: if you accumulate 6 points in 18 months, the fine will be $100 per year for 3 years (or $300 up front).
Additionally, for every point above 6 that you receive in those 18 months, you will incur a further fine of $25 per year. This means 1 extra point will cost you $75 more (since the assessment lasts for 3 years).
Suspension of NY Driving Privileges
If you are a Maine driver and commit NY traffic offenses that total 11 points or more under New York’s point system, you will lose your New York driving privileges.
You may think 11 points is a lot and that you could never get so many during a short trip to New York. However, you would be surprised at how fast and how quickly points add up.
Cell phone tickets, text message tickets, and failing to stop for a school bus are all 5 point tickets. Similarly, driving 21 mph over the speed limit is a 6 point ticket. These high point values—coupled with NY’s heightened police enforcement for out-of-state drivers—make that 11 point threshold rather easy to get to, even on a relatively short vacation.
Moreover, according to the Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles:
“The Court Records unit administers court ordered suspensions, suspensions resulting from various traffic violations (including out-of-state violations), suspensions for material misstatement of fact, provisional license suspensions and administrative suspensions under the Maine’s Demerit Point System. This section also processes related suspensions resulting from failure to comply with a child support order.”
The most relevant language is what the BMV put in parenthesis. This means Maine will suspend your driver’s license for any serious motor vehicle traffic offense you commit in New York.
As a result, the MEBMV has determined that if you commit any of the following offenses in New York, Maine will suspend your driver’s license:
- Being found at fault in a fatal car accident
- Drug or alcohol-related offenses (e.g. DWI, DUI, DWAI, etc.)
- Serious CDL violations
Maine also reserves the right to determine what it considers to be a “serious violation.” This means far more out-of-state traffic violations are included than the three we listed.
As you can see, even if points do not appear on your driving record you are facing a great deal when you are handed a New York traffic ticket. Although it might be tempting to simply plead guilty and pay the fine, doing so will not make these negative consequences go away. In fact, the conviction is the very thing that brings most of them on.
Who Should You Contact?
If you recently received a New York traffic ticket, contact Rosenblum Law today at 888-883-5529.