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Florida Traffic Laws

To get anywhere in Florida you have to drive a car so it’s important that you are familiar with driving laws. Driving and traffic laws are determined in Tallahassee by the Florida Legislature.

Shortcut: Florida Government  

Compared to most states Florida has a lot of cars on the road. This is because of the large population and the fact that the state is very spread out so public transportation is difficult to find and us in most cases.

The State of Florida has dozens of traffic laws, we will address some of the most common laws and misconceptions here.

Cell Phones

Currently there is no law requiring that your cell phone be hands free while driving in Florida.
Every year there is a rumor that Florida passed a law that cell phone usage while driving must be hands free. There were several bills introduced in the Florida Legislature in 2007 but none of them passed.

Teenage Driving Age

To get a learners permit in the state of Florida you must be 15 years old.

Teenagers that are 15 or older are eligible to get a learners permit. With a learners permit you must always have a licensed driver in the front seat next to you and you can never drive alone.
Some Florida teens are confused by the restrictions printed on the back of their drivers license so to be clear:

With a Florida Learners Permit

1. You can never drive alone - regardless of whether you are driving to school or work.
2. You can only drive during certain hours - read the back of your license.
3. If you get a traffic ticket and receive points you will have to go 12 months with no points before you can get your operators license.

You must hold your learner permit for 12 months before you can get your driver license.

Truancy - School Attendance
If your school reports you as truant (not regularly attending school) your driving privilege will be suspended until you provide proof that you have attended school for 30 consecutive days.

With an Operators License at age 16 or 17 - Restrictions

The state of Florida does lift all restrictions once you get your full drivers license if you are under 18.

Drivers under 18 still have restricted hours unless they are driving to work - read the back of your drivers license.

Traffic Tickets and Points

If you accumulate to many points on your driver license it will suspended.

Your license will be suspended for:
30 days for 12 points in 12 months
3 months for 18 points in 18 months
1 year for 24 points in 36 months

Here is a summary of driving violations and points.

  • Speeding - less than 15 mph over sped limit—3 points
  • Speeding - more than 15 mph over sped limit—4 points
  • Speeding resulting in a crash—6 points
  • Moving violation (includes driving during restricted hours)—3 points
  • Moving violation resulting in a crash—4 points
  • Failing to stop at a traffic signal—4 points
  • Passing a stopped school bus—4 points
  • Reckless driving—4 points
  • Leaving the scene of an crash resulting in property damage more than $50—6 points
  • Improper lane change—3 points

Florida DUI

Florida has a zero tolerance law for drivers under 21. If you are under 21 the blood alcohol limit is .02% or more. If you are caught driving with a .02% blood alcohol level your Florida drivers license will be immediately suspended for six (6) months.

For drivers over 21, the legal limit is .08%.

Emergency Contact Information

If you want you can provide emergency contact information to Florida Law Enforcement. The service is only available to Floridians that hold a Florida Drivers License or Identification Card.

Comments about: Florida Traffic Laws

My family just moved to Florida recently and my son is about to turn 16. Great information in this article about the driving restrictions in Florida.  I am going to make him read this and really focus on the points you can get for driving violations.  If you could do an article on auto insurance rates and how they are affected by points that would be something great to show a 16 year old.

By Mike K. on 08-09-2008

I have been told that the only time you cannot “turn right on red” is if a sign so indicates such and that a “right turn on a red arrow” is allowed. 
Is this true or false and where is the law so stated that I might read it?

Thank you.
Bill Davis

By Bill Davis on 11-16-2008

Here is the section from the Florida Drivers Handbook that addresses your question:

Come to a complete stop at the marked stop line or before moving into the crosswalk or intersection. At most intersections, after stopping, you may turn right on red if the way is clear. Some intersections display a “NO TURN ON RED” sign, which you must obey. Left turns on a red light from a one-way street into a one-way street are also allowed.

By Inside Florida on 11-17-2008

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