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Negligent Operator Driver's License Suspension in the Bay Area

Many people here in the East Bay rely on their car to get them to work, take kids to school, make it to a doctor's appointment, or give a friend a ride if their car breaks down. When the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) threatens to take away your license, it can impact your job, your family, and your life. If you are facing a negligent operator hearing, talk to an experienced attorney who will fight for you to keep your license to drive.

Negligent Operator

The Negligent Operator Treatment System (NOTS) issues warnings and penalties when the driver has reached a certain number of negligent operator points within a given time period. When a driver is convicted of a traffic violation, negligent operator points are added to their driving record.

Points for Driving Violations

The number of points issued for each driving violation is detailed under Vehicle Code 12810. Some of the most common 2-point violations include:

  • Failure to stop after an accident;
  • Drunk driving or driving under the influence of drugs;
  • Underage DUI;
  • Driving on a suspended license; or
  • Reckless driving.

Other violations result in 1 negligent operator point, including:

  • At-fault traffic accident;
  • Child without a proper safety restraint;
  • Driving an unregistered vehicle; or
  • Any other traffic conviction involving the safe operation of a motor vehicle upon the highway, including speeding, failing to obey traffic signals or failing to signal a lane change.

California drivers can also have negligent operator points added to their record for out-of-state convictions or out-of-state traffic accidents. These are reported through a national registry known as the Problem Driver Pointer System (PDPS).

There are four levels of actions based on the number of points a driver receives within a given time period. Level I results in a warning letter after 2 points within a 12-month period; 4 points within a 24-month period; or 6 points within a 36-month period.

Level II results in a Notice of Intent to Suspend letter after 3 points within a 12-month period; 5 points within a 24-month period; or 7 points within a 36-month period.

Level III results in suspension of driving privileges after 4 points within a 12-month period; 6 points within a 24-month period; or 8 points within a 36-month period. A driver is presumed to be a “prima facie” negligent operator at Level III. This results in a one-year probation and a 6-month license suspension. The suspension is effective 34 days after the notice is mailed. This means you may only have a month to fight an automatic license suspension after reaching Level III negligent operator status.

Additionally, if a driver is on probation and they are involved in another accident or get a traffic violation, their probation will be extended for one year and they will receive another 6-month suspension.

Level IV will result in suspended driving privileges and a NOTS Violation of Probation Order if the driver has any violation or collision during the suspension, has a one or two point violation during probation, has an at-fault accident during probation, or receives a Failure to Appear or Failure to Pay violation during probation.

The first violation of probation will result in a 6-month suspension. A second violation will add another 6-month suspension, and probation will be extended another year from the date of violation. After the third violation of probation, the driver will have their privileges revoked for a full year.

Negligent Operator Hearings

A driver has a chance to fight their negligent operator status through a NOTS hearing. The driver has the opportunity to present evidence and testify regarding their driving record. Your East Bay attorney can represent you before an NOTS hearing to fight your suspension and keep your license.

Experienced East Bay Defense Attorney

Lynn Gorelick has more than 30 years of criminal defense experience and understands how important your license may be for your family and your job. You should not have to lose your license just because of a few tickets or traffic violations. Contact Lynn Gorelick to represent you during your DMV hearing so you can keep your license to drive.

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