CDL Overweight Violations in New York

by Adam Rosenblum

There are several types of overweight violations that a New York CDL driver ought to know about. Two of the most common involve:

  • Carrying cargo that is more than the maximum weight allowed
  • Failing to have a commercial driver’s license (CDL) even though the weight of your vehicle requires you to have one

Be sure to consult with an experienced New York traffic ticket attorney if you find yourself charged with either of these offenses.

Basic Weight Requirements

In New York, a driver can register a vehicle (or a combination of vehicles) containing 3 or more axles weighing no more than 34,000 pounds plus 1,000 pounds for each foot and major fraction of a foot of the distance from the center of the foremost axle to the center of the rearmost axle.

Additionally, the weight on any one axle equipped with pneumatic tires cannot exceed 22,400 pounds.

The weight on any 2 consecutive axles equipped with pneumatic tires when axles are spaced less than 8 feet from center to center cannot exceed 36,000 pounds.

Also, if your vehicle’s gross weight exceeds 18,000 pounds, the Department of Motor Vehicle will require you to obtain a NYS HUT permit.

Moreover, any vehicle weighing 26,001 pounds or more is considered a commercial vehicle and will require the driver to obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL) before he or she may operate it.

Failure to meet any of these requirements could result in serious consequences.

Penalties for Overweight Violations

Under VTL 385-8, the fine you will receive for driving a vehicle that is overweight is a function of how overweight your vehicle happens to be.

The following chart provides a comprehensive breakdown of the relevant fines you may incur:

Total Weight of Load (in Pounds) Fine
Greater Than Less Than
0 2,000 $50
2,000 3,000 $75
3,000 4,000 $100
4,000 5,000 $200
5,000 6,000 $300
6,000 7,000 $400
7,000 8,000 $500
8,000 9,000 $600
9,000 10,000 $700
10,000 15,000 $1,200
15,000 20,000 $1,700
20,000 25,000 $2,200
25,000 30,000 $2,700
30,000 35,000 $3,200
35,000 40,000 $3,700
40,000 45,000 $4,200
45,000 50,000 or greater $4,700

Remember, if your truck weight exceeds the maximum weight granted to you in your permit, New York law may treat the offense as if you never were issued a permit at all.

In other words, if your load was 30,000 pounds and you were originally given a permit for 20,000, you would think that your fine would be $1,200 because you were over by 10,000 pounds.

Nevertheless, if New York opts to treat the offense as if you never received a permit (which happens more often than you might think), you will actually be facing a fine of $3,200.

Additionally, if your vehicle weighs 26,001 pounds and you do not have a CDL license to drive that vehicle, you will be in violation of VTL 509-7 for operating a commercial vehicle without the appropriate license.

Although the fine is relatively light ($75), this ticket is usually issued in tandem with an overweight ticket where New York treats the circumstances as if you never received a weight permit. In addition to the steeper fine, once this offense is on your driving record, your insurance can increase dramatically.

Make sure to hire an experienced NY traffic ticket attorney who can help reduce your fines and keep these offenses off of your driving record.

Who Should You Contact?

If you received an overweight ticket or are being charged with any CDL offense in NY, contact Adam H. Rosenblum of The Rosenblum Law Firm. His team of skilled traffic ticket attorneys will fight to keep you out of prison and on the road. Call the Rosenblum Law Firm today at 888-883-5529.