Traffic Violations Leading to Charges in Texas

Have you ever received a traffic violation citation while operating a vehicle in Texas? If you do, don’t fret; it’s a common occurrence for many individuals. Every day, drivers in Texas get tickets for different traffic violations. It can happen if you run a red light, speed, or make other mistakes while driving.

People commonly violate traffic laws in Texas, a state known for its expansive highway system. However, it’s crucial to remember that some traffic violations can result in more than simply a ticket; they can also lead to charges. Learning about these offenses will assist you in avoiding them, maintaining a clean driving record, protecting your safety, and maintaining your right to drive.

Texas Minor and Major Traffic Violations 

The most frequent offenses are those committed in relation to traffic. Typically, it can be classified into two categories:

Minor Traffic Violations

It includes stuff like parking wrong in places and other things where your car isn’t moving. Additionally, actions such as neglecting to use turn signals, following too closely, or failing to wear a seatbelt are included. The punishment for these things usually costs you between $20 and $300 or even more.

Major Traffic Violations

Involving behaviors like driving under the influence (DUI), and reckless driving. Generally, a car-moving violation. This type of violation could fall at the misdemeanor or felony level, along with jail time and heavy fines.

Common Traffic Crimes


  • Going over the speed limit means fines and points on your record. The penalties escalate if you frequently exceed the speed limit.

Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)

  • Perhaps one of the most well-known traffic violations leading to charges in Texas, DWI refers to driving while intoxicated by alcohol or drugs.

Reckless Driving

  • Texas law defines reckless driving as operating a vehicle with a willful or wanton disregard for safety.

Running a Stop Sign

  • Ignoring traffic signals can cause severe accidents. This might mean fines and sometimes charges for reckless driving or, in tragic cases, manslaughter if people are hurt or killed.

Driving with a Suspended or Revoked License

  • If you drive with a suspended license or without a license, you might face criminal charges. Make sure your driving privileges are valid before you drive.

What is the Texas Driving Point System?

Texas employs a driving point system, as found in Transportation Code 708.052, known as the Driver Responsibility Program. It gives drivers points on their license records for different traffic violations. This helps monitor and penalize those who gather too many points in a set time period. Here’s how it works:

When a driver is found guilty of some traffic violations, they get points added to their record. The number of points depends on how serious the violation is. For instance, a small speeding ticket might add 2 points, but a more serious offense could add 3 or more.

The point ranges and associated penalties are as follows:

  • 2 to 5 Points: If a driver accumulates 2 to 5 points, they are typically not subject to any penalties.
  • 6 or More Points: When a driver accumulates 6 or more points, they are required to pay an annual surcharge in addition to their regular fines for traffic violations.

Surcharge Fees: These are extra fines from Texas in addition to regular traffic fines. The amount depends on a driver’s points and specific violations, aiming to promote safer driving.

License Suspension: Gather 20+ points in 12 months, and your license may be suspended, with the duration based on the points and violations.

Reducing Points: Drivers can attend a defensive driving course to erase up to 3 points from their record.

Navigating Texas Traffic Law

  1. Pay Attention to Traffic Signs and Signals: Obey posted speed limits, stop at red lights and stop signs, and follow all traffic laws to avoid violations.
  2. Drive Safely: Avoid reckless behavior such as aggressive driving, road rage, and distracted driving. This will reduce your chances of getting into accidents and facing charges.
  3. Maintain Proper Documentation: Always carry a valid driver’s license, proof of insurance, and vehicle registration while driving.

Arrested? Don’t Plea, Call Me!

If you do receive a traffic ticket or commit traffic violations, consider consulting with a traffic attorney who can help you navigate the legal process. Whether it’s a regular traffic ticket or more serious charges, a traffic lawyer can help you understand your situation, protect your rights, and try to lessen the penalties. We can negotiate to lower fines, reduce points on your record, or even get charges dropped.