10 Bad Driving Habits That are Punishable by Law

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A license to drive is a privilege, not a right. Every driver on the road is expected to follow the rules of the road and drive safely. Unfortunately, many drivers develop bad habits that put themselves and others at risk.

And while you might think that these habits are no big deal, some of them are actually against the law. You may face fines or jail time if you break these driving laws. So what should you do to avoid getting into trouble? Avoid committing these 10 bad driving habits:


Speeding is one of the most common bad driving habits. It’s also one of the most dangerous. When you speed, you’re more likely to lose control of your vehicle, and you’re less likely to be able to stop in time if someone or something is in your path.

In most states, the speed limit is 55 mph or less. If caught speeding, you could be fined, and four points added to your license. The fine amount will depend on how fast you were going and whether you were in a school or construction zone. You may also have to attend traffic school.

Running red lights

Red lights indicate one thing: stop. But many drivers choose to ignore this rule, and they wind up running red lights. This is extremely dangerous because it can cause accidents, and it often does.

If caught running a red light, you could be fined and have two points added to your license. The fine will depend on your state, but it’s typically around $100.

Texting while driving

Many drivers think they can multi-task by texting while driving. But this is a dangerous habit that can lead to accidents. This is, in fact, one of the leading causes of car accidents.

In most states, it’s against the law to text while driving. If caught doing it, you could be fined and have points added to your license. The fine typically ranges from $50 to $200.

Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs

This is probably the most dangerous thing you can do while behind the wheel. Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs impairs your driving ability, increasing your risk of being in an accident.

If you’re caught driving under the influence, you could be fined, have your license suspended, and even go to jail. Since this violation is so profound, the penalties are also very severe. This is where you’ll need a DUI lawyer that can help you with your case. Your lawyer can help you understand your state’s DUI laws and what you can expect.

Reckless driving

angry driver

Driving recklessly is another dangerous habit that can lead to accidents. It includes speeding, tailgating, weaving in and out of traffic and making illegal turns.

Reckless driving is a misdemeanor in most states, and the penalties can include a fine, jail time, and points added to your license. The fine will range from $100 to $1,000, and you may have to spend up to 90 days in jail.

Making illegal turns

Making an illegal turn is a driving violation that’s often overlooked. This is a habit that many drivers do without even realizing it. But it’s actually against the law, and it can be dangerous.

If caught making an illegal turn, you could be fined and have points added to your license. The punishment will include a fine, which will vary depending on the state you’re in, but in most cases, it will be between $50 and $200.

Failing to yield to pedestrians

Pedestrians have the right of way, but many drivers don’t yield to them. This is extremely dangerous and can lead to accidents. Not yielding to pedestrians is a traffic violation punishable by a fine. The fine will range from $50 to $200, plus points added to your license.


Tailgating is when you follow another car too closely. This is a dangerous habit because it doesn’t give you enough time to stop if the vehicle in front of you stops suddenly. It can also lead to road rage.

Most drivers think that tailgating is not a severe violation and that they won’t get pulled over for it. But in many states, it’s actually against the law. You can be fined up to $500 for tailgating, and you may also get points added to your license.

Parking in a handicap spot without a permit

A handicap spot is for drivers who have a handicap permit. If you don’t have a permit and you park in a handicap spot, you’re taking up a place that someone who actually needs it can’t use.

Not only is this inconsiderate, but it’s also against the law. If you need a handicap permit, you can usually get one from your local DMV. If you’re caught parking in a handicap spot without a permit, you could be fined up to $500.

The bottom line

Driving responsibly is important for everyone’s safety. These 10 driving habits are not only dangerous, but they’re also against the law. Be considerate of other drivers and follow the law to avoid getting into an accident.

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