Double demerit points apply in Queensland all year round, unlike other states that only apply the increased penalty during holiday periods.
Double demerit points apply for certain second and subsequent offences, committed within 12 months of the previous offence.
The double demerit system applies to offences including:
- offences for speeding more than 20km/h over the speed limit
- mobile phone offences
- driver seatbelt offences
- driver failing to ensure passengers under 16 are appropriately restrained
- motorcycle helmet offences.
The second or subsequent offence need not be the same as the previous offence to attract double demerit points – it only needs to be within the same group of offences.
Queensland drivers start with zero demerit points. Demerit points are added to a driver’s traffic record when certain offences are committed.
A learner driver can only accumulate 4 demerit points within a continuous 1-year period before the learner licence is suspended for 3 months.
If a provisional licence holder (P-Plater) accumulates 4 or more demerit points in a continuous 1-year period, they will either have their licence suspended for 3 months, or they can agree to a 1-year period of good driving behaviour. A late-night driving restriction may also be applied.
If a P-Plater accumulates 2 or more demerit points for offences committed during a period of good driving behaviour, their licence will be suspended for 6 months.
If the holder of an open driver’s licence accumulates 12 demerit points within a 1-year period, their licence will be suspended for a requisite period, or they may agree to a 1-year period of good driving behaviour.
If an open licence holder accumulates 2 or more demerit points for offences committed during a period of good driving behaviour, their licence will be suspended for double the requisite suspension period.
The requisite suspension period for open licence holders is:
- 12–15 demerit points = 3-month suspension
- 16–19 demerit points = 4-month suspension
- 20 or more demerit points = 5-month suspension.
If you’re found driving while suspended, you’ll be charged with unlicensed driving and need to appear in court.