What happens if teen drivers get a traffic ticket during the licensing process?

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Teen drivers are held under the proverbial microscope, monitored closely for any hints of reckless driving habits. Consequently, the ramifications for a traffic violation carry greater repercussions for teens than for adults. A single traffic ticket, for instance, could, depending on the state, carry an automatic suspension and/or re-enrollment in a drivers ed program. 

The Drivers License Path for Teens

Each state mandates different penalties for teen traffic violations. The degree of penalty is contingent on the nature of the violation and, sometimes, in your current status in the graduated driver license program (GDL). A DUI will naturally carry heavier repercussions (suspension or revocation, traffic school) than say driving without a seat belt, which, again depending on state, could lead to a longer period of driving restrictions.

If a traffic violation necessitates drivers education, be sure to ask the court or the DMV for a list of approved programs. An approved driver ed online class, for example, could ease the sting of your penalty, by allowing you to study from the convenience of home when schedule allows.

NOTE: Suspensions in the accompanying grid are based on the nature of the violation. They also come with reinstatement fees, retesting, and in the case of DUI, possible rehab.  

Mandatory Traffic School Suspension Extended Holding Period
Alabama
x
A learners license may be revoked or suspended for the same reasons as a regular drivers license.
Alaska
x
Six or more points of traffic violations in 12 month period, or nine more points in a 24-month period mandates enrollment. 
Arizona
x
x
1st conviction: mandatory Traffic Survival School; 2nd conviction: three-month suspension; 3rd conviction: six-month suspension.
Arkansas
x
Six-month holding period for intermediate license, extended additional six months from conviction date.
California
x
Suspension can result from many different variables.  
Colorado
x
Suspension based on traffic violation points.
Connecticut
x
Delaware
x
x
Additional time added to 12-month holding period.
Florida
x
Georgia
x
Hawaii
x
Idaho
x
Warning letter for 1st conviction. Suspension for subsequent convictions.
Illinois
x
x
Penalties vary for GDL phases.
Indiana
x
Iowa
x
x
Permit holders must remain conviction free for six months from date of conviction; 12 months for intermediate license holders.
Kansas
x
Driving restrictions may be extended.
Kentucky
x
Louisiana
x
Maine
x
License restrictions extended for an additional 180 days.
Maryland
x
x
x
Convictions restart 18-month waiting period with provisional license.
Massachusetts
x
Michigan
x
Also may face a driver assessment reexamination with the SOS.
Minnesota
x
x
Certain major traffic offenses will result in the loss of all driving privileges until 18.
Mississippi
x
Missouri
x
Parent or guardian has authority to deny a license.
Montana
x
First offense: possible community service; second offense: 60-day suspension.
Nebraska
x
Suspension contingent on the gravity of the offense.
Nevada
x
x
License restrictions could be extended another six months.
New Hampshire
x
New Jersey
x
Suspension contingent on the gravity of the offense.
New Mexico
x
x
New York
x
Suspension is for 60 days.
North Carolina
x
Minor offenses will result in fines. Drinking violation will result in a one-year revocation. 
North Dakota License or permit cancelled for five or more points on driving record or alcohol-related offense.
Ohio
Oklahoma
x
Current GDL level extended six months from date of conviction.
Oregon
x
Driving privileges restricted for 90 days. Subsequent offenses will result in six-month suspension.
Pennsylvania
x
Suspension contingent on the gravity of the offense.
Rhode Island
x
Suspension contingent on the gravity of the offense.
South Carolina
x
If younger than 17 and you accumulate six or more points, you'll face a six-month suspension.
South Dakota
x
1st offense for permit holder will result in 30-day suspension.
Tennessee
x
x
Texas
x
Suspension contingent on gravity of offense.
Utah
x
Suspension contingent on the nature of the offense.
Vermont
x
Depending on the offense, your permit/license may face a 90-day recall.
Virginia
x
x
Washington
x
x
Extended restrictions for first offense. Suspension for subsequent offenses.
West Virginia
x
Suspension contingent on gravity of offense.
Wisconsin
x
x
Driving record points will double for second and subsequent traffic violations.
Wyoming
x
Possible 30-day suspension.
Washington DC
x
x

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