How will a Traffic Ticket Affect my Insurance Rates?

Very few things can ruin your day like a traffic ticket. In addition to the fine, you’ll be facing points on your license, which could lead to a suspension, traffic court if you decide to fight the ticket, and of course, a hike in your insurance rates. You need to face a few realities about receiving a traffic citation for a moving violation. The insurance company will find out about the ticket, and they will use the excuse to raise your rates. The increase in your premium will depend on the type of ticket you receive, the amount of time since your last citation, and the type of coverage you have on your vehicle. 

Types of Moving Violations that Will Increase Your Insurance

It’s important to differentiate between moving violations and non-moving violations. A ticket for a broken tail light or a cracked windshield does not carry points in most states. Most insurance companies will ignore a non-moving violation if you do not receive companion citations with it. Moving violations, on the other hand, are considered to be the types of offenses that contribute to accidents. If you are caught speeding, running a red light, etc., the insurance company interprets this as meaning that you are more likely to be involved in an accident, so your premium increases. The following are some of the types of violations that will result in a premium increase:

 ● Speeding● Running a Red Light● Running a Stop Sign● Failure to Yield the Right of Way● Following too Closely● Illegal Lane Change● Fleeing and Eluding● Driving on a Suspended or Revoked License● Failure to Use Due Care● Reckless Driving● DUI

You should note that some of these offenses could lead to a physical arrest in addition to the police issuing you a citation. 

Ways to Avoid an Insurance Premium Hike

Not all moving violations result in an insurance premium increase. There are ways you can avoid a premium hike or at least minimize the damage. Here are a few effective ways to fight a ticket:

Go to Court

According to traffic crime lawyer Parikh, in many jurisdictions, if the officer who wrote the citation doesn’t show up, the ticket is dismissed. In other words, the magistrate will not continue the case, and it’s as though you never received the ticket. 

Go to Driving School 

In Florida and many other states, you can opt to go to driving school if you haven’t been in the past twelve months. This means that you don’t accrue points, but the ticket does still stay on your driving record. Some insurance companies will minimize the premium increase if you choose this option. 

Hire an Attorney to Fight the Ticket

Police officers often make mistakes on their citations or in the process of issuing them. An experienced traffic attorney knows the ins and outs of ticket defense. This is also a cost-effective option when you consider the fine, the potential insurance premium increase, and the time you have to take off from work. Traffic ticket attorneys do a volume business, so they’re less expensive than a criminal defense lawyer. Remember, there are no guaranteed outcomes, so you could hire a lawyer and still be assessed fines and points.

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