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Reckless driving, inattentive driving, driving while impaired (drunk driving or OWI operating while under the influence - of a drug or alcohol) are very serious offenses in the state of Wisconsin, with increased fines and increased jail time sentences.

Attorney Tracey Wood is the first Wisconsin attorney ever appointed to the National College for DUI Defense Board of Regents.

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Wisconsin Speeding Citations

Wisconsin's point system

Demerit points are assessed to drivers when convicted of a moving violation, beginning on the date of the violation. The courts send the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) Division of Motor Vehicles records of all convictions for moving traffic violations. Persons who hold a probationary license are assessed double points for the second and all subsequent points. When 12 or more demerit points are accumulated in one year, a suspension of the driver privilege is required, for a minimum of two months. Convictions remain on the driver records for five years from the date of conviction. However, alcohol related and some commercial violations remain on the record for 10 years to life.

Reducing points

The point total may be reduced by three points for attending an approved traffic safety course. Only one reduction is allowed in a five year period for points assessed to the A, B, C, D classification. One reduction of three points is also allowed in a five year period for points assessed for class M (Motorcycle) violations. No point reduction is permitted if in one year a person accumulates 12 or more points which would require suspension.

Traffic safety courses

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) and the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTC) administer traffic safety school courses that enable drivers to reduce their demerit points. The courses are offered throughout the state. Drivers whose licenses have been suspended or revoked for demerit points may not use a point reduction to regain their driving privileges.

The courses include:

- The Traffic Safety School (TSS) course reviews basic safe defensive driving concepts and may be attended by anyone.
- The Group Dynamics (GD)* course is for drivers who have been convicted of operating while intoxicated (OWI), and are assessed to be irresponsible drinkers.
- The Multiple Offender Program (MOP) course for drivers who have been convicted of an OWI charge more than once and are assessed to be irresponsible drinkers.

Warning letters

Drivers who receive warning letters about their demerit point status are advised of the school locations on the back of that letter. Assessment agencies refer drivers convicted of an OWI and ordered to take GD or MOP to the providing school or agency in their area.

Drivers taking traffic safety courses may elect to have their demerit points reduced by three after successful completion of the course. Drivers may only have their points reduced once every five years. The student has 30 days from completion of the course to notify the WisDOT of any change in his/her request for point reduction.

Classes run daytimes, evenings, and weekends in most areas in an attempt to allow students to complete the classes in a timely manner. The classes are taught by persons who have been hired by the technical college district and are certified by WisDOT. Instructors are required to have training in driver and safety education, and/or alcohol and other drug treatment education or counseling. The Technical College System sets the course fees and they vary approximately as follows: TSS $50, GD $150 and MOP $210.

*Dodge County Human Services provides the GD course in the Dodge County area.

Contact Van Wagner & Wood

If you are under investigation for a crime or drunk driving offense, if you have already been charged with a crime or drunk driving violation, or if you have already been convicted but believe your conviction or your sentence were wrong, call ( locally in Madison, Wisconsin, through Wisconsin) or e-mail ( ) the attorneys at Van Wagner & Wood right away. They will give you a brief but professional first-impression analysis of your case and your situation, which will allow you to take an important first step in defending the case against you. You can also submit information about a criminal offense investigation or charge or a drunk driving OWI investigation or charge for a free case review.