Arizona lawmakers have been busy this year, putting 347 new laws into place for state citizens. Among these new laws are some that may change the way you drive, how much you’ll pay for tickets when you can marry. Here’s an overview of a few of the new laws that went into effect on August 3rd, 2018 in Arizona.
Higher Vehicle Registration Fees
It will cost $18 to $24 dollars more to register a new vehicle in the state of Arizona. The new fee should generate about $150 million additional funds for highway patrol.
More Accurate (and Costlier) Photo Radar Tickets
State law enforcement hopes to solve ticketing errors and reduce the risk of fraud through a new law. Now, Arizona officers must physically review photo radar camera evidence before issuing tickets. This may make fighting photo radar tickets more difficult for drivers. Traffic tickets will also cost $4 more, to go toward police officer training.
Harsher Punishments for Wrong-Way Violations
Wrong-way driving could now come with a $500 ticket and mandatory engagement in traffic school. If an investigation shows that the wrong-way driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the driver can lose his/her driver’s license for one year and face at least four months in jail. These penalties increase even further if the driver causes an accident.
New Minimum Marriage Age
Arizona brides and grooms will now have to be at least 16 years old for a legal marriage. Adolescents who are 16 and 17 may get married if they are legally emancipated. The individual’s spouse cannot be more than three years older.
No More Fake Service Animals
People who try to pass off non-service pets as service animals can now face fines of up to $250. Advocates for the law say this practice is unsafe and offensive to those with disabilities who have real service animals. Those against the law say it will be difficult to enforce and worry that it may result in awkward or uncomfortable situations for the disabled.
Stricter Abortion Process
Lawmakers passed a new law that will require a few more questions for women seeking pregnancy termination. Women will have to answer more specific medical condition questions, as well as questions regarding the reason for the abortion.
More Breaks for School Children
One law that’s been in the works for decades finally passed, enforcing two recess periods each day for children in kindergarten through third grade. The law aims to prevent schools from diminishing recreation time; something that’s been a growing trend in Arizona. Lawmakers passed the law in the belief that more physical activity improves health and academic performance.
The ban on Credit Freeze Fees
It is now against Arizona law for credit card companies to charge fees for credit freezes. Consumers will no longer have to pay the fees for requesting a credit freeze – something lawmakers hope will make it easier for cardholders to prevent fraudulent activity in the event of credit card or identity theft.
Harsher Penalties for Wearing a Mask During a Crime
Another new law qualifies using a mask or other disguise to hide one’s identity while committing a crime or immediately following as an “aggravating circumstance.” This means a crime committed while wearing a mask could now be an aggravated one, with harsher penalties – even if all other circumstances remain the same.
Worse Consequences for Sexual Extortion
Arizona law now defines “sexual extortion” as knowingly threatening someone else with the goal of forcing him or her to engage in sexual acts. Sexual extortion is now a Class 3 felony in Arizona, or a Class 2 felony if the victim is 14 years old or younger. Law enforcement may designate sexual extortion against someone under 15 as a “dangerous crime against children,” meaning the perpetrator will have to register as a sex offender.
Staying on top of the most significant new laws can help you avoid legal trouble and know what to expect if you do end up on the wrong side of the law. For more information or any questions that you may have, please call John Phebus for a free consultation today!