It is more common than not, to receive a traffic ticket at some point in your driving career. Sometimes they may be for minor infractions with a ticket price not being too steep. Other times, your ticket price can give you sticker shock, costing hundreds of dollars, if your violation has been major. Whichever the case, insurance companies will tell you, the cost of your ticket is hardly the only price you'll pay. Even policyholders from Cheap Car Insurance providers will likely see an increase in their premiums, sometimes even dramatically, if the moving violation has been significant.
Your Driving Record Follows You
In most states, speeding tickets, even minor traffic accidents stay on your record for up to three years. They are a matter of public record. Either applying for new auto insurance or, even just being a current policyholder, incurs examination of your recent driving record, especially when it comes time for renewal. Most insurance companies, even cheap car insurance providers, will request a Department of Motor Vehicle report periodically. This most frequently occurs semi-annually or annually, depending on the procedures of your insurance company.
While it may take up to six months for a ticket to appear on your record, at some point it will and your insurance rate will likely increase. The greater the infraction, the greater the potential rate hike. It only makes sense. After all, while insurance companies are in the business of protection customers against loss and liability, they are also in the business of protecting themselves. Why wouldn't they be?
Once posted, a moving violation will stay on your record in most states for up to three years. Your insurance company will likely pro-rate its affects on your premium, with a greater amount be charged initially, with a lesser amount tapering off towards the later part of the 3-year time period.
How to Reduce the Financial Impact of a Ticket
Even after receiving a moving violation, there are ways to lower the cost to your premium. Since most states typically assign points (negative) to your driving record after you have been charged, possible strategies to lower them or, in some cases, even eliminate them altogether, are as follows:
Contest the ticket- If you believe there is grounds to have the ticket dismissed, that you don't deserve it, take your case to court. After doing your homework about the violation, ask the judge to drop the charge against you. If you succeed, be sure and inform your insurance company.
Driving School- Sign up for driving school. While this may not remove the ticket in all cases, sometimes in can reduce the fine, and in most states, it will at least remove the negative points accrued once you have completed the class.
Hire an Attorney- Some lawyers special in moving violations. Contact an attorney who does so. Depending on circumstances and the kind of violation you committed, they may be able to help you reduce your fine and/or improve your record by reducing points on it.
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Article Added on Tuesday, June 18, 2013
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