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Probationary driver essentials & Rules

Whether you just received your probationary driver’s license or are a nervous friend or family member of the former, take a look at the following information that all probationary drivers should be aware of. This guide will help better understand the probationary license rules. 


Common questions from probationary drivers in Wisconsin 

What are demerit points? Points are given as a penalty for committing a traffic violation. In Wisconsin, drivers are only allowed to accumulate 12 points on their license within a 1 year period until their license is suspended. See this link for a list of violations and their associated points – Demerit points in Wisconsin. 

How do points work for a probationary driver? Points for probationary drivers are not calculated by the simple sum-formula that regular drivers are subject to. For a probationary driver, points for moving violations will double after you have received your first conviction. While you still have the same 12 point limit as a regular driver, your points total will accelerate much faster with the doubling after first conviction rule.  

What happens when you get a ticket as a probationary driver? Consider the following hypothetical: One day, you get pulled over for going 22 MPH Over the speed limit… bummer, that’s a 6 point ticket. Then, later that year, you get pulled over for going 8 MPH Over the speed limit. For a regular driver, an 8 MPH Over ticket would only add 3 points to their license; but for you, a probationary driver who has already received a moving violation, that 3 point ticket doubles! Therefore, your first 6 point ticket for 22 MPH Over + your new 3 point ticket for 8 MPH Over (x2) = 12 points… And what does 12 points mean for you? – license suspended for 6 months. 

What restrictions do I have as a probationary driver? To keep you and your passengers safe, you are only allowed to drive with 1 passenger, aside from immediate family members. Additionally, you are not allowed to drive between midnight and 5 A.M., unless it is for school or work. Remember, these restrictions can be extended if you are convicted of a traffic violation. 

How long am I a probationary driver? Don’t worry, the probationary restrictions do not last forever! Your probationary license will expire 2 years after your next birthday. So, if you got your license when you were 16, your probationary license would expire on your 19th birthday and you would be eligible for a new license. 


#1 QUESTION: What to do when you get a ticket as a probationary driver?

Getting a ticket means more than demerit points on your license. When you get a ticket, your insurance company may raise your rates which are already very high as a new driver. If you get a ticket and you do not want your insurance premiums to increase or find yourself in a scenario where you are in jeopardy of losing your license due to an excess of points, Konstantakis Law Office can help you! Our attorneys can fight for you to get points back on your license and save your insurance premiums from increasing as a result of your ticket. Contact our office today — (414) 427-6181. 

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