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Are Radar Jammers Illegal?

By Deanne Katz, Esq. | Last updated on

If you're thinking of using a radar jammer to avoid speeding tickets, think again. Radar jammers are illegal.

Jammers are different from the more popular radar detectors. The detectors allow you to know when cops are using radar guns on the highway. They aren't illegal for passenger vehicles but they also aren't necessarily effective since they only alert you once they detect radar. That may be too late.

Radar jammers work by effectively overcoming the radar guns used by police. The radar signals can't "see" the car which means they can't monitor your speed. The idea is that it can help you avoid a ticket but in reality, they can make the situation even worse.

It's bad news to get caught on an interstate highway with a radar jammer. We're not just talking a $100 ticket or increased insurance premiums either.

Using a radar jammer is a federal offense that can result in a $50,000 fine and/or five years in prison.

Radar jammers are also illegal in some states meaning you could be subject to punishment even if you aren't using it on a federal road. While you shouldn't have one in the first place, be especially sure not to use it in California, Colorado, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Utah, or Virginia.

The FCC is very strict about radar jammers which have been illegal since 1996. That means individuals are not allowed to use or sell the devices. Not only that, the FCC bans businesses from advertising the jammers in the first place.

For most radar jammers police can tell you're using one even if they can't clock your speed. The interference with the radar guns makes it clear and cops can pull you over for it.

In the case of laser speed monitoring, laser jammers are available to block monitoring beams. While those aren't against federal law, many states have passed laws banning laser jammers.

Avoid using them in California, Colorado, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington D.C.

If you're looking for a legal way to avoid a speeding ticket, our best advice is simply "Don't speed." But if your lead foot is just too heavy, a radar jammer is not the answer. Just because it's out there doesn't mean you're allowed to use it.

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