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Question: Can you explain the German traffic points system and how tickets affect my driving record?
Answer: As in the U.S., the Germans uses a points system, assigning offenders demerit points according the severity of the offense. The more points you accumulate, the worse off you are.
In Germany, once a driver accumulates four to five points, he or she will receive a warning, along with information about the points system. With six to seven points, a driver must attend two 90-minute seminars within three months of notification. With eight or more points, the driver’s license is revoked.
Examples of one point offenses include speeding, following too closely, illegal passing, failing to yield at a railroad crossing, racing and the obstruction of emergency vehicles.
Two point offenses include speeding, unintentional injury, coercion, operating a motor vehicle with a breath alcohol concentration of 0.25 mg / l or more, or with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.5 parts per thousand or more, and failure to aid.
Three point offenses include speeding, manslaughter, unintentional injury, coercion, dangerous disruption of road traffic, dangerous driving, failure to stop after an accident, drunk driving, failing to provide aid or assistance, and operating a motor vehicle without a driver’s license.
These points are in addition to any fines, penalties or damages that may result from an infraction.
Points will remain on a driver’s record for a minimum of 2.5 years. Serious violations may remain on the record for as many as 10 years. Unfortunately, there are no voluntary options to reduce one’s points.
This new penalty point system was put into place in May 2014. If you had previously acquired points, they have been converted to a new eight-point scale with the following results:
1-3 points = 1 point;
4-5 points = 2 points;
6-7 points = 3 points;
8-10 points= 4 points;
11-13 points = 5 points;
14-15 points = 6 points;
16-17 points = 7 points.