Those faced with the dreaded red and blue flashing lights behind their car as they check the speedometer and see that they are indeed driving over the speed limit often ask these questions:
- How much will the ticket cost?
- How many points will I gain?
- Will I be able to take a driver training course to reduce the effect?
- Will the speeding ticket raise my car insurance rates?
The answers to pretty much all of these questions depend on a variety of factors. However, when it comes to speeding tickets and your car insurance rates, you have more control than you might think.
Read this guide to speeding tickets and their effect on auto insurance rates and then do the #1 thing to find cheap car insurance no matter what the scenario – use our free tool to start comparing car insurance quotes today!
Auto Insurance Company Policies Regarding Tickets
Every car insurance company has different policies regarding how they deal with policyholders who get speeding tickets. Here are some examples of the way different insurance companies’ policies could affect you:
- Impact next year’s premium – Companies typically wait for policy renewal time to hit policyholders with rate increases following a speeding ticket. So while it does not affect a policy that is already in place, it often does impact the following year’s premium.
- Possible forgiveness – Some companies will have a ticket forgiveness policy for their clients, especially long-term clients. This typically means that the first ticket in a three-year period does not automatically mean a rate increase.
- Possible automatic penalties – For other companies, the first driving citation will automatically mean increased rates, especially for new clients, younger drivers, elderly drivers, those with accidents on their driving record, those with insurance claims on their policy and those having other risk factors.
The seriousness of the ticket will also often be considered by insurers before making a decision regarding whether to raise car insurance rates.
A speeding ticket that is just barely over the speed limit is more likely to be forgiven than one that borders on reckless driving.
If you have more than one speeding ticket in a short timeframe, you will definitely find that it affects your car insurance rates.
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It’s All About Timing
Timing is very important when it comes to whether or not speeding tickets will raise your car insurance rates.
- Multiple tickets – If you have already had another speeding ticket within the past three years, you can be confident that your newest ticket will increase your rate. If it has been longer than three years since your last ticket, you have a better chance keeping your rates stable.
- Ticket following an accident – If your ticket comes on the heels of an accident or in conjunction with an at-fault accident, you will likely see an increase in your premiums.
- Ticket following a claim – If you have recently filed some other type of car insurance claim, you are more likely to see a rise in insurance rates.
Preserving your driver’s record and keeping it as clean as possible is essential to maintaining good rates. If you can’t keep it completely clean, spreading out the bad news will minimize the effect.
Minimize the Impact of Speeding Tickets on Your Insurance Rates
There are some things you can do to help keep your rates down following a traffic violation.
- Take a driver education course. If you happen to get a speeding ticket, the number one thing you can do to ensure it doesn’t cause your rates to rise is to take a driver education course.
- These courses are offered throughout the country and are available in a variety of formats.
- Most states even permit courses taken online from home to count.
- Typically, taking the course will save you both the demerit points associated with moving violations and the negative impact on your insurance premiums
- Shop for better premium prices. If you find yourself with rising rates from a speeding ticket, you may want to take the opportunity to shop around for a better price from other insurance companies.
Your insurer may not give a break on first tickets but another insurer may be happy to do so, especially if you have an otherwise good driving record.
Rates and discounts vary so much from company to company that shopping around and comparing prices yearly is a good practice.
The cheapest company one year may be much more expensive, comparatively speaking, the next year.
You may also find another insurer offers different discounts that you qualify more readily for that will allow you to counteract the increase in rates caused by the speeding ticket.
Comparing Car Insurance Rates
When faced with imminent car insurance rate increases due to a speeding ticket, the best course of action is to compare the prices of as many different insurance companies as possible.
In order to get started doing so, use our free online quote tool. These tools allow you get multiple quotes quickly and present them in an easy to compare format that makes your job easy.