If you are a motorist in today’s economy, then you are probably trying to find ways to keep the cost of owning a vehicle down. Gas prices have been on the rise for years with no sign of slowing down, and insurance is already costly enough. If you have been caught and ticketed with a traffic violation, then one of the first things you will wonder is how it affects your current insurance plan. Do they raise prices with traffic violations or do they give you the benefit of the doubt? Although it differs from state to state, here is a quick guide on how traffic violations affect your insurance.
How Does a Traffic Violation Affect Insurance Rates?
Each insurance company uses a different policy when it comes to traffic violations and the effect they will have on your insurance, although there seems to be three different ways they go about it. The first way they may deal with it would be to raise your rates for the first three years. The second way is to apply a decent surcharge for one year and then remove it if there have been no further traffic violations within that time period. Some lucky drivers get the third option, where the insurance company looks at a clean driving record and does nothing as long as there are no further violations.
Traffic Violations in Different States
Some people are under the impression that traffic violations in other states will not follow them back home, and that they will rest in the state that the violation took place in. Although this may be a way to avoid paying a fine, it will still affect your insurance as all the states are now linked via a central database. Your insurance company will be aware of any violation that happens out of state and will decide how to deal with it based on your driving history.
Should You Admit Guilt When Receiving a Ticket?
After violating a traffic law and receiving a ticket you will have to decide what to do about it. You can try and contest the ticket, or you can immediately pay the fine and admit guilt. Another thing to keep in mind is whether you admit guilt when you receive a ticket. The DMV advises people not to admit guilt because they will not have an opportunity to contest the ticket later on. Additionally, their insurance will almost certainly be raised.
When you are issued a ticket for a traffic violation, you should never contest it or pay the fine without first speaking with your insurance company. If you remain on good terms with them and it is a first offense, then there is a good chance that they will cut you some slack and not raise your insurance premiums. If you have been a multiple time violator and have a storied history with your insurance company, then there’s a really good chance they will raise your insurance without hesitation. The best way to avoid having your insurance raised is to be as safe as possible and not break the laws of the road. Sometimes the risk is just not worth the reward.