Traffic tickets are frustrating and often expensive. Depending on the traffic offense involved, the cost of the ticket could be several hundred dollars on its own. There will be secondary costs attached to it as well.
One of the most significant expenses is the likely increase in what you will pay for your motor vehicle liability insurance. Will you need to worry about your insurance rates increasing if you pay your recent traffic ticket?
Insurance companies charge based on their likely risk
When an insurance company underwrites a policy, they look carefully at how much risk they will have. The most profitable policies are policies that never have major claims, so it is better to insure a driver with a history of safety on the road than one who has already caused multiple crashes or received numerous traffic tickets.
You don’t need to switch your insurance company for a ticket to trigger an increase in your premium. When it comes time to renew your policy, your insurance provider will automatically request your recent driving record. If there is a new ticket and, therefore, more points on your license, they will increase your premium to reflect that change.
How much more will the insurance company charge?
Your age, the age and value of your vehicle and even your gender will influence how much you pay for insurance. Most New Yorkers pay over $2,000 a year for motor vehicle liability coverage. A single citation for speeding will increase someone’s motor vehicle insurance premium by 14% on average.
Women tend to pay a little bit more for insurance when they have a good driving record, whereas men will notice that their overall costs will increase by more than a woman’s policy will after they have a ticket. A price increase of 14% on average will mean hundreds of extra dollars in insurance costs every year until that ticket comes off your record.
If you have prior tickets already on your driving history, you may even wind up in a high-risk pool for insurance, which can drastically increase your monthly premium and may even force you to change insurance companies. Successfully defending against the ticket can help you prevent that citation from increasing your motor vehicle insurance costs. It will also mean that there will be fewer consequences if you ever get another citation in the future.
Thinking about all of the consequences of a traffic ticket can help you decide if fighting against it is the right choice in your current situation.