Demerit Points And Licence Suspension (Full Guide)

By Omid

Once you have your Queensland driver's licence or permit, you will be subject to earning demerit points when you commit an offence. And this will be recorded in your traffic history. Demerit points are imposed to encourage safe and responsible driving.

Now, the number of demerit points you will receive depends on the type of offence you commit. The most common offences drivers commit are:

  • Speeding

If you drive less than 13 km/h over the speed limit 1 demerit point and a $183 fine. Now, if you drive more than 40km/h over the speed limit, you will receive a whopping 8 demerit points and a $1,286 fine.

  • Not wearing a seatbelt

You will receive 3 demerit points and a $413 fine if you fail to wear your seatbelt properly whenever you drive.

  • Disobeying a traffic light 

One of the most common offences drivers make is disobeying a traffic light. For example running a red light will cost you 3 demerit points and a $413 fine.

  • Use of mobile phone

All drivers caught holding or using their mobile could receive 4 demerit points and a $1,033 fine.

These offences may seem not dangerous to you but if you disobey traffic rules or get distracted for even just a second, there is a possibility to get into a road accident. 

Every licence holder has a set limit depending on the type of licence they hold. You will receive a driver licence sanction if you reach this limit. Here are the corresponding penalties if you accumulate demerit points:

  • learner licence (4 or more points). If you get 4 or more demerit points within 1 year of holding your learner licence. Your learner licence will be suspended for 3 months.
  • provisional licence (4 or more points). Whether you hold a P1 or P2 licence, if you acquire 4 or more demerit points, you also will receive an 'accumulation of demerit points - notice to choose' letter. The purpose of the notice will provide you with the option to choose whether you will opt to have your licence suspended for 3 months or agree to continue driving under a period of good driving behaviour for 1 year - this means you will not break any road rules for a year.
  • open licence (12 or more points). Having an open licence has similar penalties to a provisional licence holder but within a longer period. If you get 12 or more demerit points within a 3-year period, you will also be sent an 'accumulation of demerit points - notice to choose'.

As a note, your accumulated points do not reset when you progress from one licence to another. So for example, if you get 4 or more demerit points within a year, you will still have to serve a 3-month suspension even if you have already upgraded to a provisional licence.

Remember that the number of points you accumulate will determine the length of your licence suspension. If you keep disobeying road rules and reach the limit, you’ll get a higher penalty. It can even go up to 5 months of suspension. 

You can also check the demerit points you have accumulated during the period appropriate to your driver licence type. You can see the total points you’ve accumulated, timeframe that’s being counted as well as what type of offence, and the status of your licence.

So just imagine all the hassle you'll have to go through not being able to drive to places. Follow all the road rules and be a responsible driver and steer away from going through all the trouble.

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