LTO ‘demerit point system’ to punish repeat offenders

Yes, your traffic violations will come back to haunt you big time.

Perhaps in a bid to weed out hard-headed motorists from the roads, the Land Transportation Office (LTO) is set to implement a demerit point system for drivers who are up for license renewal. 

Under Section 9 of the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of Republic Act No. 10930, the LTO will now institutionalize a point system which will be used to determine the eligibility of a driver for license renewal.

“The system shall likewise be utilized as a primary tool to identify, deter, and penalize repeat offenders of traffic laws and ordinances,“ the document stated.

Section 11 of the IRR indicated that every violation made by a motorist will have a corresponding demerit point based on three categories of violations: Five demerit points for “Grave Violations,“ three demerit points for “Less Grave Violations,” and one demerit point for other violations not listed in the previous categories.

Any motorist applying for a driver’s license renewal who accumulated at least five demerit points during the accumulation period shall be required to undergo a driver’s license reorientation course. 

Aside from completing the reorientation course, applicants who incurred 10 or more demerit points will also be required to pass the theoretical examination before he or she can renew the license. Forty demerits point will result in the revocation of the license.

Meanwhile, drivers of public utility vehicles, who are supposed to be “professional” while on the road, will incur double demerit points for every traffic violation.

Even student drivers who will be caught breaking any traffic violation and incurring at least five demerit points during the validity of his or her student permit will be barred from applying for another permit for a year.

The LTO’s demerit point system during license renewal will determine if a motorist is eligible for a driver’s license of up to five years or to a maximum of 10 years.

Under Section 6 of Republic Act No. 10930, all driver’s licenses will be valid for five years, unless revoked or suspended. 

According to a report by the Philippine News Agency, LTO chief Edgar Galvante said that the 10-year validity of driver’s licenses will only be available for motorists who have not committed any traffic regulation.

“From the one-year validity of the license, we made it three years. Now, we made it five, and so it would be 10 [years] so that you don’t have to come back every five years but rather, 10. You have to come back only once every 10 years for you to renew your license but that is if you are not delinquent, meaning, you do not have violations,” Galvante said.

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