France decreases penalties for 'minor' speeding offences

The Local France
The Local France - [email protected]
France decreases penalties for 'minor' speeding offences
A car passes by a speed radar (GPS) in 2012 on a road in northern France (Photo by PHILIPPE HUGUEN / AFP)

Motorists in France will no longer lose points for minor speeding offences, according to a government decree published in the country's Journal Officiel on Friday.


Motorists caught speeding up to five kilometres over the limit will no longer risk losing a point on their driving licence, but they will still be subject to fines, as announced in April by France's interior minister, Gérald Darmanin.

The new policy was made official on Friday when it was published in France's Journal Officiel. It will come into effect on January 1st.

Currently, the rule is that even 'small' speeding offences are punishable by a fixed fine ranging from €68 to €135, as well as losing one point on one's licence.

However, starting in the New Year, the loss of one point will only be applied to those caught speeding between 5km to 20km over the limit. 


Darmanin told Le Parisien in May that motorists going up to five kilometres above the limit would still be fined.

READ ALSO These are the offences that can cost you points on your driving licence

Of the 13 million speeding tickets issued each year in France, 58 percent are for speeding violations of less than 5 km per hour over the limit, with many coming from automated radar machines.

How does the current rule work?

The rule itself is already somewhat flexible, depending on where the speeding violation occurs.

If the violation happens in an urban area or low-speed zone (under 50 km per hour limit), then it is considered a 4th class offence, which involves a fixed fine of €135. 

Whereas, on highways and high-speed roads, the consequences of speeding by 5 km per hour are less severe. The offence is only considered 3rd class, which means the fixed fine is €68.

Under the existing rules, both of these violations risked a loss of one point on your licence, which will no longer be the case starting in January 2024.

How do people feel about this?

Pierre Chasseray, a representative from the organisation "40 Millions d'Automobilistes," thinks the government should do away with all penalties for minor speeding offences, including fines. In May, he told French daily Le Parisien that this is only a "first step."

Meanwhile, others are concerned that the move to get rid of points-deductions could end up encouraging people to speed, as they’ll think there is no longer any consequence.

To avoid being accused of carelessness, France's Interior Ministry also promised in spring 2023 to become "firmer" with regards to people who use other people's licences in order to get out of losing points - say by sending their spouse's or grandmother's instead of their own after being caught speeding. The Interior Ministry plans to digitalise license and registration in an effort to combat this. 


Ultimately, if you are worried about running out of points on your licence, there are still ways to recover them.

You can recover your points after six months of driving without committing any other offences, and there are also awareness training courses that allow you to gain your points back. It should be noted, however, that these trainings typically cost between €150 and €250, and they do not allow you to regain more than four points.


Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

Roberto Goldammer 2023/12/08 17:38
what about the areas where the speed limit is 30km/h and virtually nobody, inclusive municipality buses, observers the 30km/h limit?? these areas include small villages where kids are playing on streets and where a 30km/h zone is established.

See Also