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Los Angeles DUI and DMV Points

Los Angeles DUI and DMV Points

Los Angeles DUI and DMV Points

In addition to license suspensions, the California DMV also assigns points to your driving record for DUI convictions. Too many points can lead to even longer loss of driving privileges.

Understanding how DMV points work after a Los Angeles DUI is critical. This article explains the point system, how many points a DUI adds, point reduction options, and how points impact your license.

Overview of the DMV Point System

The DMV assigns Negligent Operator Treatment System (NOTS) points for convictions of major driving offenses like:

  • DUI
  • Reckless driving
  • Hit and run
  • Speeding over 100 mph

Points remain active on your record for 10 years. Accumulating too many points can lead to additional DMV sanctions like driver’s license suspension or revocation.

How Many Points for a Los Angeles DUI?

A first-time misdemeanor DUI conviction in Los Angeles results in 2 DMV points. More serious DUI offenses add more points:

  • Misdemeanor DUI with injury – 2 points
  • Felony DUI – 3 points
  • Felony DUI with injury – 4 points

The number of points also increases with multiple DUI offenses within 10 years:

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  • 2nd DUI – 3 points
  • 3rd DUI – 4 points
  • 4th DUI – 5 points

The DMV considers your DUI history over the past decade when determining points. Having prior DUIs leads to higher points.

License Suspension Based on Points

The DMV can take action to suspend or revoke your license once you accumulate a certain number of points:

  • 4 Points – Possible suspension
  • 6+ Points – 6 month suspension
  • 8+ Points – 1 year suspension
  • 12+ Points – Revocation

Just 2 points for a first DUI gets you halfway to a suspension. Multiple offenses can quickly put your license at risk.

Other Impacts of DUI Points

In addition to suspensions, DUI points also cause the following consequences:

  • Higher insurance rates
  • Possible loss of commercial license
  • Difficulty renting vehicles
  • Limitations on job opportunities

Too many points creates a reputation as a “negligent operator” which carries many penalties beyond just DMV sanctions.

How Long Do DUI Points Stay on Your Record?

DUI points have a 10-year life on your DMV record. They will show up on background checks and affect your license status for a full decade.

There are no options to remove or expunge DUI points early. You must wait out the 10-year period for points to disappear.

Reducing DUI Points on Your Record

While you cannot erase DUI points completely, you may be able to reduce their impact by:

  • Completing traffic school – Removes 1 point every 18 months
  • Maintaining a clean record – Points expire after 10 years
  • Challenging inaccuracies – Contest mistakes on your record
  • Seeking legal options – Lawyer may find ways to reduce points

Taking proactive steps allows you to gradually decrease points over time. But there are no quick fixes for removing DUI points entirely.

Out-of-State DUIs and California Points

Even if convicted of DUI in another state, that state can report the offense to the California DMV. This results in DMV points on your California driving record.

Never assume an out-of-state DUI conviction won’t impact your California license. Check with the DMV to understand the consequences.

Points for Under 21 DUIs

Underage drivers face additional point penalties for DUI convictions before turning 21:

  • 1st DUI – 2 points
  • 2nd DUI – 3 points
  • 3rd DUI – 5 points

These points are in addition to longer mandatory license suspensions for drivers under 21.

Getting Legal Help

Having an experienced DUI attorney help minimize points is strongly recommended. They may be able to:

  • Fight DUI charges to avoid a conviction and points
  • Negotiate plea deals for lower charges with fewer points
  • Identify DMV record errors to remove points
  • Develop strategies to reduce total points

Don’t let DUI points pile up and threaten your license. Take action to control points and limit their impact.


A DUI conviction results in both license suspension and 2 or more DMV points on your record. Too many points can lead to further driving restrictions.

Understanding how DUI points work is key to navigating the consequences. An attorney can help develop a game plan to manage points and preserve your driving privileges after a DUI.


[1] https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/driver-education-and-safety/dmv-safety-guidelines-actions/negligent-operator-treatment-system-nots/

[2] https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/driver-education-and-safety/educational-materials/fast-facts/driving-under-the-influence-age-21-and-older-ffdl-35/

[3] https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/handbook/california-driver-handbook/points-and-insurance/

[4] https://www.lacriminaldefensepartners.com/dui-license-suspension/

[5] https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/codes_displaySection.xhtml?lawCode=VEH&sectionNum=13352

[6] https://www.avvo.com/legal-guides/ugc/how-long-is-the-dmv-license-suspension-after-a-california-dui-arrest

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