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How Do I Remove Points from My Driving Record?

You asked, I answer:

"How do I remove points from my record?"

Today I’d like to address a question clients often ask me:

“I have points on my record — is there any way to remove them?”

But first, indulge me for a moment…

ben pushing wheel.jpg

A quick aside on time travel.

In the TV show Lost, the Island travels through time whenever someone turns its underground frozen wheel. In Back to the Future, time travel requires a DeLorean DMC-12 traveling at exactly 88 miles per hour.

Having never tried one of methods myself, I cannot say for 100% certainty that they do not work in the real world. And I don’t know what the scientists at NASA or the CIA or the Freemasons have devised behind closed doors.

But some of my clients cling to the belief that perhaps they, too, can travel backward in time.

“Can I get a conviction removed from my driving record?” they often ask.

Sure you can, I think, if you can travel back in time.

Of course, I don’t give such a sarcastic answer to a paying client — you guys know I’m too nice for that, right?

There is a wistful notion among many that traffic tickets are ephemeral things, that can be made to go away if you wish them to.

It would be nice if it were true, wouldn’t it? But just like anything else bad that happens in life — a failing test score, a botched job interview, an important task forgotten about — once it happened, it happened.

What is really meant by my driving record?

The DMV generates what they call a "lifetime driving record," which is just as it sounds. It chronicles every conviction, accident, and suspension you’ve had in your lifetime. If one is motivated to find this record, they will see your entire driving history — the good, the bad, and the ugly.

“But what about defensive driving courses? They remove points, right?” you ask. That is the subject for another post — but the quick answer is, no, they actually don’t. Click here to read more about what defensive driving courses do and don’t do.

The DMV also generates a more limited abstract, the “standard driving record,” which shows a more limited range of suspensions (four years from the date of suspension, in most cases), traffic convictions, accidents (three years), and other matters.

In general, the standard driving record is what insurers will look at when deciding whether to change your premiums. But there’s no law that forces them to only consider this abstract. Insurance is a contract between two private parties, and the insurer can do almost anything within the bounds of that contract.

Points do not go away after a certain period of time — that would make it way, way too easy to avoid points on your record. Click here for more information about what the “eighteen month” rule really means.

So, what’s a driver with a bad record to do?

I’m sorry to say that you cannot get convictions removed from your lifetime driving record. For the standard record, this can only be done through the passage of time (again, unrelated to the gap between the date of issuance and the date of conviction).

There are only two ways to keep your driving record clean:

#1. Don’t get tickets.

#2. Win the ones you get.

Call us at 212-729-0472 or email my office any time if you need help with #2.