Registry Penalties

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Penalties

Don’t let the Massachusetts Department of Motor Vehicles take your license!

  • Keep Your Massachusetts Drivers License From Being Suspended
  • Keep Your Insurance Rates From Increasing

You’re probably wondering what the possible penalties for traffic offenses might be, so I’m going to give you some specific examples.

In Massachusetts, traffic tickets are serious. A conviction for a moving violation, such as operating to endanger, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, driving on a suspended license, driving under the influence (see Massachusetts DUI), or speeding, has broader and more negative consequence than what is generally known.

With most convictions of traffic tickets (either a plea or continuance without a finding/CWOF) there are consequences with the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles:


Suspensions for Convictions of Criminal Motor Vehicle Violations: The Massachusetts RMV will suspend your license for 60 days to a lifetime depending on the offense.

Suspensions for MGL c. 94C drug offense convictions: The Massachusetts DMV will suspend your license from one to five years.

Suspensions for out of state violations and suspensions pursuant to MGL c. 90, §22(c)

Cumulative suspensions arising due to too many violations:

Three Speeding Tickets in Massachusetts

Three speeding violations within one year incurs a 30-day suspension (aka three speeds)

Five Surchargable Events in 3 years

Any combination of five surchargeable events (tickets or accidents) within three years requires completion of a remedial driving course by the Mass RMV. A surchargable event is one that affects your driver’s license points and/or affects your insurance rates.

Seven Surchargables within 3 years

Any combination of seven surchargeable events (tickets or accidents) within three years incurs a 60-day suspension and completion of a remedial driving course.

Habitual Traffic Offender – Events within 5 years

A Habitual Traffic Offender is someone the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles classifies by any combination of twelve moving violations or three major moving violations (generally any criminal moving violation) within five years. If you are declared to be a habitual traffic offender, you will be given a four-year suspension. (Note: The Mass RMV does not include accident surcharges.)

Junior Operator Penalties

If you are classified as a Junior Operator by the Mass Registry, which is a driver under 18 years old, you are subject to extremely strict standards.

A single speeding ticket will result in a 90-day license suspension, as well as a $50 surcharge on top of the fine. In addition, you will have to take a “Driver Attitudinal Retraining Course” and a SCARR program (State Courts Against Road Rage).

Finally, you will be subject to a $500 driver’s license reinstatement fee after your license suspension.

See more here at the Registry Junior Operator’s Penalty page.

Under 21 Penalties

The only registry restriction for under 21 drivers is a zero tolerance policy toward drunk driving/OUI charges. Any BAC result above .02 will result in a license suspension of your license for 30 days.

See more information on underage OUI penalties in Massachusetts.

For more information on any of these classifications, refer to the Official Massachusetts RMV site.

You should take every step to avoid this happening to you. Fighting and beating your current traffic or speeding ticket may be the only way to avoid this if you have the prior violations on your record.

Choose competent and affordable representation. Contact our law office. Don’t let the Massachusetts Department of Motor Vehicles take your license without a fight!