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Bureau of Motor Vehicles

myBMV > Suspension and Reinstatement > Common Traffic Violations Common Traffic Violations

Indiana law provides the courts and the BMV with the authority to suspend a motorist's driving privileges when certain traffic violations have been committed

Failure To Appear / Failure To Pay

Failing to respond to a traffic citation or failing to pay for a ticket may lead to the suspension of a motorist's driving privileges. Upon receipt of a certification from a court that a motorist has not appeared in court or paid for a traffic offense, the BMV is required to suspend that person's driving privileges.
The suspension is indefinite and ends only when the court provides the BMV with documentation to end the suspension.

Failure To Meet Insurance Requirements

Operating a vehicle without financial responsibility in effect is against the law. A motorist who operates a vehicle without financial responsibility in effect is subject to a 90-day suspension of driving privileges or a one-year suspension if it is a repeat violation within a three-year period. To prevent a BMV imposed suspension of driving privileges following a traffic violation or accident, the driver must have his or her insurance provider electronically submit proof of financial responsibility (Certificate of Compliance) directly to the BMV using the EIFS system. The insurance provider must note the vehicle involved and the date of the accident or ticket as requested by the BMV. If the driver is unable to provide proof of financial responsibility (Certificate of Compliance) to the BMV, the motorist must serve the suspension, pay outstanding insurance/reinstatement fees, and have his or her insurance provider electronically submit a SR22 - Proof of Future Financial Responsibility to the BMV in order to be reinstated. A court related suspension for no insurance can only be closed or removed from a driver record by order of the court.

A motorist appearing in court on a traffic violation may be requested by the court to prove insurance coverage on the date of the offense.

Upon receipt by the BMV of an accident report, a request for proof of financial responsibility will be sent to the motorist's mailing address as shown on the Official Driver Record.

Indiana motorists are required to provide proof of financial responsibility by having their insurance provider submit a Certificate of Compliance (COC) when they are involved in any of these situations below. The COC must cover the date for which proof of insurance is required. This date is indicated in the accident report or citation and the vehicle make and year must match..

  • An auto accident for which an accident report is received.
  • A traffic ticket within one year of receiving two other traffic tickets.
  • A serious traffic violation such as a misdemeanor or felony.
  • Any traffic violation by a driver who was previously suspended for failing to provide proof of financial responsibility.
    • Drivers are not relieved of the consequences for failing to provide proof of financial responsibility following a conviction if the conviction is ordered expunged, vacated, or otherwise removed, from the record.

In addition to the scenarios outlined above, the BMV may request proof of financial responsibility at any time. When a motorist receives a Financial Responsibility Verification request from the BMV, he/she must arrange for their insurance provider to complete the information for the request and submit the financial responsibility information (Certificate of Compliance) electronically to the BMV within 40 days. Failure to return the information will result in a suspension of the individual's driving privileges.

Habitual Traffic Violator (HTV)

Indiana’s HTV law provides serious penalties for drivers who have committed repeated traffic offenses over a 10-year period. The BMV uses the criteria below to determine whether or not a driver qualifies as a HTV.

10-Year Suspension: Two Major Offenses Resulting In Injury or Death

An HTV is any person who, within a 10-year period, commits and is later convicted of two major offenses resulting in injury or death including:

  • Reckless homicide resulting from operating a motor vehicle
  • Voluntary or involuntary manslaughter resulting from the operation of a motor vehicle
  • A driver involved in an accident resulting in death or injury who fails to stop at the scene of the accident to provide information and assistance
  • Operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated resulting in death
  • Operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content of .08 percent or more resulting in death

Drivers who are convicted two times within a 10-year period of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated resulting in death will have their driving privileges suspended for life.

10-Year Suspension: Three Major Offenses

An HTV is any person who, within a 10-year period, commits and is later convicted of three major offenses including:

  • Driving while intoxicated or with a blood alcohol content of .08 percent or more
  • Driving while the person’s driving privileges are suspended or revoked as a result of the person’s conviction of an offense under IC 9-1-4-52 (repealed July 1, 1991), IC 9-24-18-5(b) (repealed July 1, 2000), IC 9-24-19-2, IC 9-24-19-3, or IC 9-24-19-4
  • Operating a motor vehicle without having obtained a license
  • Reckless driving
  • Criminal recklessness involving the operation of a motor vehicle
  • Drag racing or engaging in a speed contest in violation of the law
  • Leaving the scene of an accident or failing to notify authorities of an accident when required
  • Any felony under the Indiana motor vehicle statutes or any felony in the commission of which a motor vehicle is used
  • Any of the offenses listed in Section A

Drivers who, within a 10-year period, commit and are later convicted of three (3) major offenses will have their driving privileges suspended for 10 years.

Nine Moving Violations Plus One Major Offense

The BMV must suspend a person’s driving privileges for five years if that person accumulates 10 moving violations in a 10-year period, one of which is a major offense as listed in Sections A or B. For example, a person who receives nine speeding tickets and one reckless driving citation in a 10-year period will be subject to a five-year suspension as a HTV.

Note: Out-of-state major convictions after June 30, 2010 can be used to qualify a driver as a HTV. After June 30, 2013, out-of-state minor convictions can also be used to qualify a driver as a HTV.

Operating a Vehicle While Suspended as a HTV

Indiana law provides that a person who receives a conviction for operating a vehicle while suspended as a HTV may have his/her driving privileges suspended for a period set by the court, up to a lifetime forfeiture

Operating A Vehicle While Intoxicated

If a law enforcement officer has probable cause to believe that a motorist is driving while intoxicated, the officer may ask the motorist to submit to a chemical test. Operating a vehicle while intoxicated, or with a blood-alcohol content in excess of the legal limit is a criminal offense and has immediate consequences.

A motorist who fails a chemical test may have his or her driving privileges suspended up to 180 days. This suspension occurs upon receipt by the BMV of a probable cause affidavit from the court containing the results of the failed test. A motorist who refuses to submit to a chemical test conducted by a law enforcement officer will face a suspension of driving privileges for up to two years.

When a motorist is convicted of operating a vehicle while intoxicated or with a blood-alcohol level of .08 percent or more, the court is required to suspend his/her driving privileges. Suspension periods are longer for repeat offenders, or if the operating a vehicle while intoxicated offense involves injury or death.

If the motorist is eligible, the court may issue an order for probationary driving privileges. A person must be suspended for a minimum period of time before the probationary driving privileges can take effect. The court may require the installation of an ignition interlock device, which mechanically tests the driver's blood-alcohol level before his or her car can be started, as a condition of the probationary driving privileges.

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