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Compare car insurance after a speeding ticket

Your speed and where you get the ticket will affect insurance rate changes.

Getting a speeding ticket leads your insurer to see you as a higher risk than other drivers on the road. In most cases, expect a hefty rate hike after your violation for up to three years. But if it’s your first violation, you could minimize the effects on your premium.

How does car insurance change after a speeding ticket?

You probably won’t see a change right away. But if your insurance company pulls your driving record, one violation could remove your safe driver discount and raise your premium. How your insurance company responds depends on your age, the speed that you were driving and your driving record.

  • Speed matters. Your premium increase is related to how many points you have against your license or how much you were speeding. Also, speeding on the highway could carry an extra penalty because of how fast traffic moves there.
  • Age matters. Getting a ticket as a teen or driver younger than age 25 can raise premiums even higher than other drivers because insurance companies already see you as high risk.
  • Your first ticket isn’t a big deal. If you have an otherwise clean driving record with no history of speeding, your insurance company might overlook the incident. But you may lose your safe driver discount.
  • Ticket forgiveness can help. Some companies advertise a ticket forgiveness add-on to your auto policy. You’ll pay a little extra to ensure that you don’t have a large premium increase if you get a speeding ticket down the road.
  • Reckless driving carries extra weight. In some states, you can get tagged with reckless driving if you speed well over the limit like 20 mph. Also, some states allow felony speeding charges if you cause serious injuries or speed repeatedly. Insurance companies take serious driving violations as proof that you’re a higher risk to insure.

Compare car insurance rates after a speeding ticket

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How much does a speeding ticket affect car insurance rates?

Insurance companies raise premiums on a scale for speeding tickets, based on how fast you’re driving compared to the speed limit. Expect your insurance to go up around 20% after a speeding ticket, according to a 2019 North Carolina Department of Insurance study.

SpeedingIncrease of insurance rate
1-15 mph over the limit20% or $288 more annually
16-29 mph over the limit22% or $317 more annually
30 mph or more over the limit30% or $427 more annually

Every insurance company and state handles speeding differently. For example, North Carolina’s Safe Driver Incentive Plan gives specific requirements for insurance companies to raise their rates.

So if you’re speeding 10 mph over a speed limit under 55 mph, you may see a 30% premium increase. If you’re caught driving over 75 mph for a speed limit under 70, your increase is 80%.

Higher rates after speeding

Cassidy received a $150 speeding ticket after driving 10 mph over the limit. In response, Cassidy’s car insurance premium rose from $1,300 to $1,625 per year, a 25% increase. When all was said and done, Cassidy paid $975 for three years of raised premiums. The total cost of her speeding violation was $1,125.

What to do after getting a speeding ticket

Once you’re tagged with speeding, you can lower the ticket’s impact on your insurance rates in a few ways:

Lower the penalty

Most states let you request mitigation over a court hearing. Mitigation means that you have the opportunity to plead down the consequences. Negotiating a lower penalty works best when your previous record is clean.

For example, you could offer to pay the fine but not have the points added to your driving record. Or you could go to traffic school to have the ticket dismissed.

Fight the ticket

While you shouldn’t fight the ticket when you’re pulled over by a cop, you can argue your case later. Going to court doesn’t provide a guarantee, but having your ticket dismissed removes the points from your license.

However, fighting a speeding ticket is difficult, especially if the officer used radar equipment to clock your speed. What to expect:

  1. Get evidence. Judges want proof or reasoning behind fighting the ticket. Here, using GPS data or a dash cam to prove your speed could help. If you didn’t see speeding signs, you might bring proof that signs were hidden or not posted along your driving route. Known for your habit of slow driving? Bring along character witnesses or other passengers in the car to testify those details.
  2. Consider a lawyer. A lawyer specializing in traffic cases can strategize questioning or lower a steep penalty without stepping into a full-blown court case. However, hiring a lawyer costs extra money, typically a few hundred dollars. It may not be worth it unless you’re facing a big offense, like felony speeding or a DUI.
  3. The ticketing police officer won’t always show up. If the police officer doesn’t show, the judge will likely hear your side of the situation, review any official reports and make a ruling based on that. Without the opposition, you ‘ll have a better chance for a ruling in your favor.

    Wait it out

    Speeding tickets only stay on your record for three years in most states. Keep a clean record and wait for the violation to expire, and you can get a lower insurance rate again.

    Improve your driving record

    In the meantime, you might:

    • Take a defensive driving course. Taking a driving course doesn’t just reduce points on your license. It could result in a discount from your insurance company, a plus when you’re facing higher rates from a violation.
    • Shop around for a new policy. Some companies offer more forgiving policies that mean you pay less in the end. Rather than accepting a ticket-based rate hike, you could see if you can get a better rate from another insurer. At the very least, you should get new quotes after three years.
    • Stay claim-free. Consider ways to protect yourself from accidents like taking less dangerous roads to work or parking in a safe area. And if you ding up your car after backing into a pole but nothing else got damaged, consider forgoing filing the claim. The longer you go without a claim, the better your history will look to your insurer.

      What if this isn’t my first ticket?

      If you have multiple speeding tickets over a three-year period, you could be labeled a high-risk driver, which changes the policies that you qualify for. High-risk policies could raise your rates by as much as 100%. So if you’ve got more than one speeding ticket on your record, compare quotes from high-risk insurance companies that will be more forgiving of a spotty driving record.

      What happens if I don’t pay my speeding fine?

      At best, you could receive notices from a collection agency, but more realistically you could get your license suspended for not facing your speeding violation. A suspension means additional fines, a waiting period before you can drive again and needing your car insurance company to file an SR-22 form.

      This form proves to the state that you have car insurance and is a common suspension requirement that specialized high-risk insurers will handle. You can expect to pay higher car insurance rates as a result.

      Instead of ignoring your traffic ticket, ask for a payment plan to help you manage the fine according to your budget.

      How do I update my car insurance after a speeding ticket?

      You don’t have to inform your insurance company about a traffic ticket. When your policy renews, the company will most likely run your motor vehicle report before setting your premium. Prepare for an increased premium without any safe driver discounts.

      Bottom line

      Speeding may or may not affect your insurance premium, but you can still take steps to lessen the damage by working to erase points from your license and by keeping your record clean. And if the increase is too much for you, take the opportunity to shop around and see if another company might save you money on your auto insurance.

      Common questions about car insurance after speeding

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