5 Florida Driving Laws to Know About

Did you know that Florida has more toll roads and bridges than any other state in America? It’s also the state with the second-highest percentage of drivers over the age of 65.

So how do toll roads work and what are the laws surrounding some of the oldest (and youngest) drivers in Florida?

If you’re planning on getting a license in the Sunshine State then it’s important to know all about Florida driving laws. Keep reading for 5 important laws that all drivers in Florida should know about.

1. Florida Texting and Driving Laws

In most states across America, you cannot use cellphones and other handheld devices while you’re driving. However, traffic laws in Florida don’t ban the use of these devices. You may use hands-free technology, for example, Bluetooth devices that allow you to make calls.

However, it is against the law to text and drive in Florida. The Sunshine State’s 2019 distracted driving law instituted a ban on texting and driving.

In 2020 this road violation became a primary offense. This means that you can be pulled over and fined for texting and driving with no other offenses.

The penalties for texting and driving are dependent on whether it is your first or subsequent offense and whether it occurred in a school zone.

A subsequent offense of texting and driving must happen within five years of the first offense. If this is the case, it becomes a moving violation. This can incur fines of a minimum of $60 as well as a possible three points against your driver’s license.

If you’re caught texting while driving in a school zone it is immediately considered a moving violation, regardless of whether it is your first offense or not.

These laws don’t apply to vehicles that are stationary. So if you stop at a traffic light then texting is not an offense because you are not technically driving.

It’s important to remain vigilant even in cases where your behavior is not considered a legal violation of road laws. If you are involved in a collision, search for ‘accident lawyer near me‘ to clear up your case and claim.

2. Driving Laws for Florida Teens

There are special laws that apply to teenage drivers on top of the general traffic laws throughout the state.

The most important one to keep in mind is that someone who holds a learner’s license cannot receive any moving violations. If this happens, then the one-year period for which they hold their learner’s license will be extended for another year, or until they are 18 years old — whichever arrives first.

Minors should understand that their driving privilege depends on school attendance. If a minor doesn’t attend school for 30 consecutive days they may have their license suspended or may not be able to even apply to receive a learner’s license.

It goes without saying that a minor caught driving with alcohol in their system will lose their license immediately for six months. If there is a subsequent offense, their license will be suspended for one year.

Lastly, parents and legal guardians have the right to cancel or suspend their child’s license.

3. Toll Road Laws in Florida

There are almost 500 miles of tollroads in Florida so it’s important to know how they work and how they affect your journey.

Most locals will carry a SunPass that attaches to the car’s windshield and connects to a prepaid account. With this little device, you can drive straight through the toll without stopping and the toll amount will be deducted from your account.

Some of the tolls are unmanned so you need to give the exact cash amount if you don’t have a SunPass.

Keep in mind that some areas don’t accept cash, such as the Selman Expressway in Tampa and the Mid Bay Connector in Destin.

The state of Florida recognizes that stopping at tolls can be hazardous. So, if you happen upon a toll that is all-electronic, you can drive straight through. A camera will snap a picture of your plate and you’ll receive an invoice for the toll amount in the mail.

4. Florida Driving License Laws

In Florida, you can receive your learner’s permit at 15 years old. You need to have this provisional license for at least 12 months, moving onto an intermediate license when you’re 16. The intermediate license has limitations on the type of vehicle you can drive and how many passengers are allowed in the car.

At 18 years old you can get your full driver’s license. This will need to be renewed every 8 years. However, for drivers over the age of 80, renewal happens every 6 years and is coupled with a vision test.

This 107-year-old Florida local, considered the oldest driver in America, has had to renew his license four times since he turned 80!

5. Tinted Window Laws in Florida

Everyone knows that it’s incredibly hot and sunny in Florida — it is the Sunshine State after all. So, many drivers turn to tinted windows to get some respite from the heat and sun.

While this is a good idea, there are some laws to keep in mind. There is a restriction on how dark your window tint can be, and this changes depending on the vehicle.

For example, SUVs and vans rear windows can be darker (allowing 6% or more light) than sedans (allowing 15% or more light)

Following Florida Driving Laws

In order to be a safe driver and ensure that you’re not committing any violations on the road, it’s important to stay up-to-date with Florida driving laws. Some are quirky, such as the laws about tinted windows. But most are designed to keep you safe.

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