Driving through Hawaii can be beautiful, but if you commit a traffic offense, you may be on the hook for Hawaii traffic fines that total hundreds or thousands of dollars. This guide will talk about a few of the common offenses that Hawaii traffic fines are assessed for, and can help you to understand how much your fine will roughly be. You will also learn about the difference between a civil infraction and a misdemeanor, and how this will affect your Hawaii traffic fines.
It is important to remember that for many traffic offenses in the state of Hawaii, police officers have a great deal of discretion and can issue a ticket for any amount they feel is reasonable. This means that it is impossible to estimate for sure how much your fine will be in a particular area for a particular charge, especially when you are a repeat offender. If you need to know exactly how much your fine will be, you should contact your local courthouse and ask to speak to someone in the traffic court division about your fine.
Civil Infractions Versus Misdemeanors
The most common kinds of traffic violations in Hawaii are typically ticketed as civil infractions. These infractions include moving violations of many types, and are punishable by Hawaii traffic fines as well as possible license suspension. The point system for Hawaii licenses has been abolished, so no points will be assessed regardless of the charge. Instead, judges can determine whose license to suspend based on the charge and how many times a person has been convicted of traffic offenses in the past.
Misdemeanor charges are significantly more serious, and carry the risk of jail time in addition to Hawaii traffic fines. You may be charged with a misdemeanor for repeat traffic offenses as well as first-time serious offenses like DUI. For many offenses, even if you are charged with a misdemeanor it is unlikely you will ever go to jail, especially if you work out a guilty plea agreement with the district attorney.
First-time speeding offenders in the state of Hawaii have to pay no more than $200 in Hawaii traffic fines. This is very close to the national average, and you may have to pay an additional $250 if you speed in a work zone, even one where workers are not present.
If you are going more than 30 miles per hour in excess of the posted speed limit, you can be charged with reckless driving. Reckless driving is a misdemeanor charge punishable by up to $1000 in Hawaii traffic fines and up to 30 days in jail for a first-time offense. You may also see your driver's license suspended for up to 5 years.
Driving with a Suspended License
It is always a serious crime to drive with a suspended license, but in Hawaii it is considered even more serious if you drive after your license is suspended due to a DUI charge. This offense carries mandatory jail time of at least 30 days and Hawaii traffic fines of at least $250 the first time you are convicted. If you are convicted of driving with a suspended license three times, you will have your license permanently revoked and owe $2000 in Hawaii traffic fines.