Koffsky & Felsen, Llc

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Motor Vehicle Offenses Involving Teen Drivers

Teen drivers face special restrictions when driving and need to know the laws and penalties associated with certain motor vehicle offenses. Pleading guilty in court or by mail (through payment of the fine) can result in a loss of driving privileges and could affect your insurance premiums.

Curfew Restrictions

Unless traveling for employment, school, religious activities, medical necessity, or driving for a Safe Ride Program,[1] teen drivers can only drive between 5:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m. There is no curfew while training for a license permit, as long as you are accompanied by an instructor or parent/guardian/qualifying adult providing instruction.


[1] Safe Ride Programs provide free and confidential rides home to any student unable to drive safely or has concerns as a passenger. A person does not have to be intoxicated to use a Safe Ride service and both teens and adults may volunteer as a driver in a Safe Ride Program in their area.

Passenger Restrictions

While driving with a learner's permit and during the first six months as a newly licensed driver, you may not have any other passengers in your car except for:

        • A licensed driving instructor;

OR

        •A parent/legal guardian with a valid driver's license;

OR

        •A passenger who is at least 20 years old, has held a driver's license for at least four years and whose license has not been suspended within the past four years.

During the second six months, only immediate family are allowed to ride as passengers.

Learner's Permit and 16-and 17-year-old Driving Restrictions

You may NOT:

        •Transport more passengers than the number of seatbelts in the car.

        •Operate any vehicle that requires a public passenger transportation permit or vanpool vehicle.

        •Use a cell phone (even hands-free) or any other electronic mobile devices while driving.

        •Transport any passenger on a motorcycle for six months after the issuance of a motorcycle endorsement.

48-Hour License Suspension for Certain Violations

16- or 17- year-olds who commit certain moving violations (violating driving restrictions, speeding, 20 miles or more over the posted speed limit, OUI, reckless driving, racing) will have their driver's license seized by law enforcement and their license will be suspended for 48 hours. You and your parent/legal guardian must go to the police department to retrieve your license and sign a statement confirming its return. In addition, the police officer is authorized to tow your car.

Driver Retraining

Anyone age 24 or younger who commits two or more moving violations and/or violations that result in suspension must complete the DMV-certified driver retraining program. After completing the operator retraining program, if you are convicted of any other violation within 36 months you face license suspension.

License Suspensions/Penalties

DMV will suspend your learner's permit or license if you are convicted of violating a teen driving restriction, speeding, reckless driving, racing or using a cell phone or text messaging device while driving.

Passenger restrictions: driving beyond curfew; operating public service vehicle or vanpool; more passengers than seat belts; carrying passengers on a motorcycle less than six months after obtaining a motorcycle endorsement (CGS §14-36g(a))

        •1st Offense: 30-day license suspension, $175 license restoration fee, court fines.

        •2nd Offense (For all second and subsequent offenses): 6-month license suspension or until age 18, whichever is longer; $175 license restoration fee, court fines.

Use of Cell Phone/Text Messaging (CGS §14-296aa)

        •1st Offense: 30-day license suspension, $175 license restoration fee, court fines.

        •2nd Offense: 90-day license suspension, $175 license restoration fee, court fines.

        •3rd Offense: 6-month license suspension, $175 license restoration fee, court fines.

Speeding (CGS §14-219)

        •1st Offense: 60-day license suspension, $175 license restoration fee, court fines.

        •2nd Offense: 90-day license suspension, $175 license restoration fee, court fines.

        •3rd Offense: 6-month license suspension, $175 license restoration fee, court fines.

Reckless Driving (CGS §14-222(a))

        •1st Offense: 6-month license suspension, $175 license restoration fee, court fines or imprisonment of not more than 30 days, or both.

        •2nd Offense: 1-year suspension, $175 license restoration fee, court fines or imprisonment of not more than one year, or both

        •3rd Offense: 1-year suspension, $175 license restoration fee, court fines or imprisonment of not more than one year, or both

        The attorneys at Koffsky and Felsen, LLC have over 40 years of combined experience handling motor vehicle offenses involving both teens and adults and can help you get the best possible outcome related to your court or DMV proceedings. Contact our office at 203-327-1500 or visit our website at www.koffskyfelsen.com should you need assistance or have any questions.

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