Following Too Closely (Tailgating) NYS VTL § 1129a

Following Too Closely traffic ticket violation (more commonly known as “tailgating”) is kind of an oddball violation in that the law does not have much to say about. Even so, this small traffic ticket have can have big consequences. First, lets look at the law to see what it recognizes as Following Too Closely, VTL section 1129a.

The Law and Its Exception

Tailgating or Following Too Closely has an ambiguous legal definition. The law says that:

a driver cannot follow another car closer than what is “reasonable and prudent” given the speed of other cars, traffic and road conditions.

The legal definition of this offense will leave many drivers wondering whether or not they were tailgating or driving too closely. Unfortunately, there is no “one size fits all” answer and the answer to that question is based on the facts and circumstances of the traffic stop.

The definition also creates questions like: What is reasonable and prudent? How many other cars have to be on the road? Or what type of road conditions matter? Plus, the absence of a more precise definition gives police officers a lot of discretion in issuing this ticket to drivers.


The fines for Following Too Closely range from $0 to $450, depending on the number or previous offenses for the same violation. Plus, there is also a surcharge of either $93 or $88 depending on the town or village. This traffic ticket also carries 4 points.

Other penalties include a driver responsibility assessment fee and car insurance premium increases that can translate into major moola.

Find Out Your Options — Consult The Best Traffic Ticket Lawyer in Westchester County

Do you want to avoid the negative consequences of a tailgating ticket and save money? For the best possible outcome let The Claro Law Firm fight hard for your rights! Call Elisa Claro, Esq. at 917-300-3334 or online at for a free consultation. Let the best Westchester County traffic ticket attorney work for you. New York traffic Lawyer Elisa Claro, Esq. has handled thousands of traffic tickets throughout New York, including Westchester County – Yonkers, Greenburgh, White Plains, with awesome results. Let us set you up for success, call today

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