What is a Stop Sign Violation?

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  • Written By: G. Wiesen
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 18 February 2020
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A stop sign violation is typically a legal offense committed while operating a motor vehicle and usually consists of passing through a stop sign or similar traffic signal without stopping properly. These violations typically fall under driving laws for the region in which a person is driving. Most areas that use stop signs require that anyone approaching a stop sign slow his or her speed, come to a complete stop before the sign, and check to be sure it is safe before continuing onward. A stop sign violation is any type of action that does not follow this procedure and typically consists of not fully stopping before a stop sign.

In the US, driving laws are generally established by states, though most states have laws quite similar to each other to make interstate driving easier. A stop sign violation will usually mean the same thing in any state in the US and generally consists of a driver not properly stopping his or her vehicle when approaching a stop sign. This may be due to a person failing to slow down or stop at all, either due to ignoring the sign or not seeing it or slowing down before the sign but not coming to a full stop.


A full stop is usually defined in driving manuals as the wheels of the vehicle no longer turning at all. This may be required for a specific time, often about two seconds, to ensure the vehicle is fully stopped. If a time is specified, then it would need to be followed properly by a driver to avoid a stop sign violation. Otherwise, the driver would at least need to ensure he or she does come to a full stop with all the wheels no longer turning. A stop sign violation can also involve not stopping at all or not ensuring that the way was clear before continuing.

When a driver does not stop at all, he or she may have been unable to properly see the stop sign and so the stop sign violation could potentially be fought in a court of law. Not ensuring the way was clear before proceeding can result in a vehicle accident and any of these situations can result in a traffic ticket and a fairly sizable fine for the offense. A stop sign violation may also result in points against a person’s driver’s license, and enough points can lead to a suspension of a person’s license and driving privileges.


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