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What will my Traffic Ticket do to my Insurance Premiums?

by Seth Azria on 4/21/2020
Syracuse, NY Traffic Lawyer effect of traffic tickets on car insurance

Aside from general observations such as parking violations typically will have no effect, lawyers are unable to predict exactly how your insurance company might react to traffic convictions. 

Our job is to represent you zealously in court and minimize any potential impact that ticket will have at law. The resulting reduction or dismissal generally improves your standing with the insurance companies as compared to a conviction for the original charge. 

Nevertheless, we do get the question often and avoiding insurance premium increases is an important goal.  Here is some information from the insurance industry that may help you determine what your ticket will do to your insurance premiums. 

Good News for New York Motorists

The New York State insurance law limits the traffic convictions that insurance companies may increase premiums.

The convictions that may raise your premiums are: 

  • Speeding more than 15mph over the posted limit; 
  • Speeding or Reckless Driving where injury or earth results; 
  • Speeding or Reckless Driving in any combination on three or more occasions;
  • Any DWI, DWAI, or DWAI drugs;
  • Criminal negligence, Homicide or Assault arising out of the use of a motor vehicle; 
  • Leaving the scene of an accident without reporting;
  • Filing a false document with the DMV;
  • Knowingly permitting an unlicensed driver to operate a motor vehicle insured by the policy, (Facilitating AUO) 

For all other moving violations, your insurance company may raise your premiums only after you have two or more convictions for a given offense.  New York Insurance Law 2335. 

Driver’s License Points: What you Need to Know

Posted to Insurance.com, a website that showcases the writing of self-described experts on insurance with a mission to “educate customers and develop direct relationships with carriers to help all customers shop real rates and get the right insurance for their current needs.”

Highlights from this article: 

  • Insurance companies do not rely on state point systems, they have their own. 
  • Not all states use a points system, instead they monitor your driving and will still suspend or revoke. 
  • Points from violations add up and penalties for too many points vary widely by state but most moving violations will increase premiums. An insurance.com study revealed that reckless driving convictions, on average,  raise insurance rates by 73%, speeding by 20%, illegal turn by 20%, DUI by 79%, and texting while driving by 23%. 
  • Points can stay on your record for up to 10 years. (More on New York points on records.)
  • Even with points, there are a number of ways to reduce costs. Methods include shopping coverage, rescoring your insurance, defensive driving courses, etc. 
  • Tickets for children failing to wear a seat belt are 3 points in New York and, on average, will increase premiums by 3%. Learn more. 

How Long Does a Traffic Violation Stay on Your Insurance Record?

Posted to thebalance.com, a personal money management site. 

This article maintains that: 

  • The answer to these questions relies on the type of violation and state of residence. 
  • The article includes a chart by state of average increases to insurance following a single accident. 
  • Good news for New York drivers, who enjoyed the smallest increase. Learn more. 

FAQs on Moving Violations and Car Insurance Rates

- Posted to esurance.com an Allstate Company

This page describes the difference between moving and non-moving violations.  

This page also answers:

  • How long will moving violations affect your car premium? According to esurance, if it’s cleared from your record, it won't typically affect your rate. In New York that means 3 years plus the remainder of the year in which you were convicted. Learn more about NY points. 
  • Out-of-state convictions are likely to affect your insurance premiums due to interstate information sharing agreements.
  • A number of other FAQ’s to help you determine what you need to do to handle your ticket most effectively. Learn more. 

How Long does a Ticket Impact Your Car Insurance?

Posted by the Zebra, “born in 2012...with a single goal: to simplify insurance. And in doing so, we’ve become the nation’s leading insurance comparison site.”

This page provides: 

  • Average premium increases per speeding ticket by car insurance company;
  • Discussion of whether a ticket in another state affects your insurance rates (it very likely will); and, 
  • How to save after a ticket. Zebra's ideas to save are to be smart with your claims, only pay for coverage that you need, and to double check for discounts. 

Sample Premium Increases from One Speeding Conviction

A person insured by Allstate who paid $1888 per year without a ticket was convicted for speeding 11-15 mph over the limit. 

According to Zebra,  this driver would pay $2,280 in year 1, $2,673 in year 2, and $3,065. That’s over $2,000 for one speeding ticket. The cost of a slower speed ticket, e.g. 6-10 mph, is similar. Learn more.

Need help with your ticket?

One speeding conviction may cause premiums to increase over $2,000 in three years. The Zebra. 

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I had gotten an extremely high speeding ticket when I drove upstate for the first time. I'm 18 and have had my license for about a year, so my mother and I thought it would be a good idea to hire an attorney. It was a holiday weekend, so I was surprised when David Bruffett answered our call on Presidents' Day. I'm so thankful he did. He's did an amazing job getting my speeding ticket reduced. He instructed my on what to do to increase my chances to reduce as many points as possible. He was honest when telling us what our outcome would most likely be, however, the outcome exceeded our expectations. He and his staff were very professional and supportive. David had always made himself available to answer our calls.

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