How Long Does a Ticket Stay on Your Driving Record?
Be honest: You have probably exceeded the speed limit when driving. Everyone does it, and we all hope that we don’t get caught. It’s generally not a big deal to exceed the speed limit a bit, given the natural flow of traffic, and most states allow a margin of error for you to exceed the speed limit without penalty. However, once you get caught speeding excessively, you will often get a citation, better known as a speeding ticket.
Speeding tickets are costly, not just because you might have to pay a fine over them. However, they can also lead to increased auto insurance rates, simply because once you have one you become a higher insurance risk to all drivers. Still, these tickets might eventually become moot points, and your auto policy rates might stabilize once again. How does it all work?
What are the Insurance Penalties of Getting Tickets?
When you get a speeding ticket, that ticket becomes a notation on your driving record. You have the right to dispute this ticket, but if it becomes a part of your driving record, then your insurer will see it when they next review this record. Your state might also use a point system, which will assign a different amount of weight to the severity of the infraction.
The higher the number of points or infractions on your record, the higher a risk your insurer will consider you. This means they will consider you much more likely to file a claim against your coverage, and therefore cost them more money. To cover this additional cost risk, they might have to increase your premiums, since they cannot continue to invest in you without the appropriate returns. That will equal more money out of your pocket when you pay your insurance premium.
However, as time passes, you will move further and further from the date this infraction occurred. As a result, if you are not continuing to rack up new infractions on your record, an old speeding ticket might become a moot point. Some states even allow these tickets to expire from your record completely. While you might experience a higher insurance premium for a few years following your infraction, your rates will still likely stabilize and drop over time.
Still, the time that an infraction remains on your license might be shorter than the time it remains on your insurance record. For example, while a ticket might drop off your driving record after two years, it might remain on your insurance record for five. Therefore, your rates might stay higher even though the infraction is no longer on your driving record.
If you have speeding tickets, talk to your auto insurance agent about them. Some companies do not raise rates for a single violation. Many even offer first-ticket forgiveness. This can help you get lower rates later, though they might be a headache right now.
Also Read: How Does Car Liability Insurance Work?