How Traffic Tickets Affect Auto Insurance RatesCompare Car Insurance Quotes in 3 Steps
1. Enter Your Zip:Page Overview
Traffic Tickets and Car Insurance Rates
When car insurance companies determine your premiums, one of the biggest factors they look at is your history of traffic tickets. Statistically, having more traffic tickets and moving violations means that you are more likely to get into an accident and cost the car insurance company money.
You cannot predict exactly how much you car insurance will go up after a ticket, but your rates are likely to increase with a higher number of traffic tickets and more severe violations.
You can get a traffic ticket for any one of a number of seemingly minor infractions, and a ticket for any moving violation (i.e., an infraction you make when driving rather than parked) can affect your car insurance rates.
There are many moving violations that can affect your rates, ranging from minor violations such as littering to very serious violations such as excessive speeding.
Every company has a different policy when it comes to traffic tickets. For example, one company may raise your rates for 3 years, and another may apply a surcharge, which can be removed after one year if you have no more speeding tickets or other traffic infractions on your driving record.
If you have been a long-time customer with a good driving record, one ticket might not significantly affect your car insurance rates.
How the Severity of the Violation Affects Rates
While the adjustments to premiums for moving violations while vary among insurance companies and the driver’s record, you can expect to see bigger rate increases for more serious infractions.
- Driving with a broken headlight is a low-impact ticket.
- A citation for speeding at 10 miles over the speed limit can have moderate effects on your car insurance rates.
- A DUI conviction can have severe consequences when it comes to your rates.
If you are ticketed for speeding, how much you were exceeding the speed limit matters as well.
Drivers ticketed for driving 15 miles above the posted speed limit will see their car insurance rates increase more than drivers who are ticketed for going only 5 miles above the speed limit.
Excessive speeding is linked to higher auto accident rates, which makes you a much bigger risk in the eyes of your car insurance company.
If you are issued a ticket while driving outside of your home state, you could still face a rise in the cost of your car insurance.
Most states participate in a program that facilitates the sharing of information between states regarding traffic tickets/moving violations . This means that the ticket you obtain while out of state will most likely show up on your driving record/Motor Vehicle Report. Once it does, your state’s DMV will determine its effect on your record.
From there, your car insurance provider will decide whether the violation will result in an increase in your premium.
Many states use a points system through which you are assigned a certain number of points for each moving violation that you receive.
More serious moving violations are associated with higher point values, and they often stay on your driving record for longer periods of time, meaning they can impact your rates for longer.
The most severe violations may stay on your record permanently, depending on your state of residence.
The more points you add to your driving record, the more you can expect your auto insurance rates to increase.
For more information, please see our Driving Records and Car Insurance page.
Drivers who are concerned about the impact of traffic tickets on auto insurance rates are advised not to admit guilt when they receive a ticket. If you admit guilt, you won't be able to contest the ticket at a later date.
Keep in mind that signing a ticket isn't an admission of guilt, but paying the fine is. Don't pay a fine for a traffic ticket until you've decided not to contest the ticket.
It's often a good idea to call your auto insurance provider to ask how a ticket will affect your rates before making any decision regarding your ticket.
In some cases, you can have a traffic ticket erased from your record so it won't affect your auto insurance rates. Options to get a violation off your record include:
- Enrolling in traffic school.
- Taking a defensive driving course.
- Some states will allow you to complete an online course in order to have your ticket erased from your driving record.
Of course, the best way to avoid expensive premiums is to obey all traffic laws and drive safely to avoid moving violations and accidents altogether. Having a clean driving record is the best way to get cheap car insurance.
In This SectionOther Topics in This Section
Insurance Resource Center
- How Traffic Tickets Affect Auto Insurance Rates
- How Driving Record Points Affect Auto Insurance Rates
- How Auto Claims Affect Auto Insurance Rates
- Deductibles, Coverages, and Car Insurance Rates
- How Occupation Affects Auto Insurance Rates
- How Marital Status Affects Auto Insurance Rates
- Insurance For New Cars Versus Used Cars
- How Gender Affects Auto Insurance Rates
- How Gaps In Coverage Affect Auto Insurance Rates
- How Auto Theft Affects Auto Insurance Rates
- How Driving History Affects Auto Insurance Rates
- How Age Affects Auto Insurance Rates
- Car Insurance Rates and Your Credit Score
- Shop For Insurance Online
Auto Insurance Center
- Auto Insurance Policy Basics
- Buying Car Insurance Basics
- Buying Car Insurance For Teens
- Teen Guide To Car Insurance
- How To Get Car Insurance Coverage With A Learners Permit
- First Time Drivers Guide To Car Insurance
- How To Save Money On Teen Car Insurance
- Common Driving Mistakes Teens Make
- Safe Driving Tips For Teenage Drivers
- Safe Cars For Teen Drivers
- How To Add Teens To Your Auto Insurance Policy
- Insuring My Teen Driver: FAQs
- Tips for Car Insurance Policy Holders
- Buying Car Insurance For Seniors
- Senior Guide To Car Insurance
- Auto Insurance Coverages
- Extended Insurance Coverage Guide
- How To Get The Most Out Of Your Auto Insurance Coverage
- When To Buy Rental Car Insurance
- How To Cover Vandalism Through Car Insurance
- How To Cover Auto Theft Through Car Insurance
- How To Cover Windshield Repair Through Car Insurance
- How To Cover Accidents With Wildlife Through Car Insurance
- How To Cover Lost Wages Through Car Insurance
- How To Cover Medical Expenses Through Car Insurance
- How To Cover Pet Injuries Through Car Insurance
- How To Avoid Auto Insurance Non Renewal
- DUI Costs and Car Insurance
Commercial Auto Insurance
- Commercial Auto Insurance Requirements
- Commercial Auto Insurance State Requirements
- Federal Motor Carrier Insurance
- CDL Federal Requirements
- Commercial Insurance Filing
- State Commercial Insurance Filings
- Federal Truck Filings
- Intrastate Truck Filings
- Interstate Transportation Filings
- Certificate Of Insurance
- Uniform Carrier Registration Plan
- Types Of Commercial Auto Insurance
- Commercial Vehicle Insurance Discounts
- Multiple Policy Discount For Commercial Vehicles
- Paid In Full Commercial Vehicle Insurance Discount
- Commercial Business Experience Discount
- Commercial Auto Insurance Quotes
- Commercial Auto Insurance Articles
- Who Needs Commercial Auto Insurance
- Types Of Commercial Vehicles To Insure
- How To Save Money On Commercial Auto Insurance
- What You Need For A Commercial Insurance Quote
- Types Of Business Vehicle Insurance
- How To Compare Commercial Insurance Quotes
- How To Get The Most Out Of Your Commercial Auto Insurance Coverage
- Types Of Commercial Trailers To Insure
- Commercial Auto Insurance by State
- Motorcycle Insurance Minimum Requirements
- Types Of Motorcycle Coverage
- Accessory Coverage For Motorcycles
- Comprehensive Physical Damage Insurance For Motorcycles
- Collision Insurance For Motorcycles
- Bodily Injury Liability Insurance For Motorcycles
- Property Damage Liability Insurance For Motorcycles
- Medical Payments Insurance For Motorcycle Riders
- Personal Injury Protection Insurance For Motorcyclists
- Uninsured Motorist Coverage For Motorcyclists
- Underinsured Motorist Coverage For Motorcyclists
- Motorcycle Roadside Assistance
- Motorcycle Insurance Quotes
- Motorcycle Insurance Rates
- Motorcycle Insurance Discounts
- Motorcycle Insurance Articles
- Motocross Insurance
- Dirt Bike Insurance
- Moped Insurance
- Trike Insurance
- Scooter Insurance
- Motorcycle Insurance by State
Auto Insurance Policy Basics
- Auto Insurance Deductible
- Auto Insurance Limit
- Auto Insurance Premium
- Auto Insurance Quote
- Auto Insurance Rates
- Motor Vehicle Report
- Proof Of Financial Responsibility
- Auto Insurance Endorsement
- Auto Insurance Exclusion
- Auto Insurance Rating
- Auto Insurance Code
- Auto Insurance Discounts
- How To Obtain Proof Of Insurance
- How To Change Auto Insurance Providers
- Factors That Affect Insurance Rates
- How To Cancel An Auto Insurance Policy
- Six Common Car Insurance Myths
- Penalties For Driving Without Insurance
- No-Fault Insurance and Fault Insurance
- Car Insurance Quotes vs. Calculators
- Car Insurance FAQs
- Car Insurance Statute of Limitations
- Why Car Insurance Rates Go Up After Accidents
- When An Accident Happens
- Accident Loss
- Auto Accident Payment Recovery
- Total Loss
- Proof of Loss
- Actual Cash Value
- Lost Wages
- Salvage Vehicles
- How To File An Accident Report With The Police
- Evaluating Personal Injury In Auto Accidents
- First Steps Following A Personal Injury Auto Accident
- When To Seek Medical Attention For Personal Injury
- Protection Against Auto Insurance Fraud
- How To Handle Staged Car Accidents
- Types of Insurance Claims
- Bodily Injury Claims
- Property Damage Claims
- Windshield Claims
- Third Party Insurance Claims
- About Car Insurance Claims
- How Car Insurance Claims Affect Your Auto Insurance Policy
- When To Cover Personal Injury With Auto Insurance
- How Much Personal Injury Protection To Buy
- Supplementing Health Insurance With Personal Injury Protection
- Pain And Suffering In Personal Injury Claims
- Statute Of Limitations And Personal Injury
- Negligence And Determining Legal Liability
- Auto Insurance Claim Settlements
- Auto Insurance Settlements Involving Personal Injury
- Proving Fault In An Auto Accident Personal Injury Case
- Compensation For Auto Accident Personal Injury Claims
- Tips For Settling A Motor Vehicle Accident Claim
- Factors That Affect Compensation In Personal Injury Claims
- Legal Representation For Insurance Claims
- When To Hire A Personal Injury Attorney
- When To Hire A Lawyer
- Personal Injury Attorney Fees
- How To Choose Personal Injury Lawyers
- Benefits of Hiring A Personal Injury Attorney
- What To Submit To A Personal Injury Attorney
- Processing Car Insurance Claims
- How Car Insurance Companies Handle Claims
- How Car Insurance Companies Investigate Accident Claims
- How To Document Auto Accident Damage
- When To Report An Auto Accident To The DMV
- Tips On Documenting Personal Injury Expenses
- Paying Medical Bills Before Receiving Personal Injury Compensation
- Wage Loss In Personal Injury Auto Accident Cases
- How To File A Loss Of Wages Auto Claim
- Stages Of A Personal Injury Case
- Filing Car Insurance Claims
- Damaging Your Own Property and Car Insurance Coverage
- Fraud and Theft
- Old Cars: Popular Targets of Theft
- Car Insurance Fraud 101
- Car Theft Prevention
- Most Stolen Cars and Other Vehicles
- Cities With the Highest Car Theft Rates