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How Long is Traffic School?

Posted on: October 18th, 2011 by Traffic School

The length of traffic school differs in every state and can sometimes even differ depending on the number of offenses on your record or the severity of your offense. With that said, most online traffic school course are self paced and are not timed so they generally are completed more quickly than an in person, brick and mortar traffic school. The normal length of a traffic school course will be 4-8 hours. Below you can find some examples of how long traffic school is:

  • Florida:  4 hours
  • California: 8 hours
  • Nevada: 5-8 hours

Another benefit of using an online traffic school course to cut down on the time it takes to complete traffic school is that you can sign in and out as often as you please.  That means that you will not have to sit in a classroom for the full 4-8 hours but instead can take the traffic school course in shorter chunks which makes it more manageable.

Most Dangerous Cities for Drivers

Posted on: October 17th, 2011 by Traffic School

Did you ever wonder what the most dangerous cities for drivers were?  Likely many of us may believe it is our own city, but according to insurance.com, the following cities are the most dangerous for drivers.


City Percentage of Drivers Reporting an Accident
1. Baltimore, Md. 36.5%
2. Johnstown, Pa. 34.5%
3. Portland, Maine 33.4%
4. Des Moines, Iowa 33.2%
5. Erie, Pa. 33.1%
6. Bangor, Maine 32.9%
7. Birmingham, Ala. 32.4%
8. Austin, Texas 32.3%
9. Manchester, N.H. 32.2%
10. Lincoln, Neb. 31.8%

If you live in one of these cities, or another city with expensive insurance premiums, consider taking an insurance reduction course to lower costs.  Insurance companies base their rates on these kind of statistics which can cause your rates to increase.

Can I take traffic school more than once?

Posted on: October 14th, 2011 by Traffic School

Luckily in most states you are allowed to take traffic school more than once.  The most common rule is that you can take traffic school once every 18 months, or 1.5 years, to avoid getting points on your record for one ticket.  However, in some states the rules time frame may vary between 1 and 2 years.

Additionally in some states, you are allowed to take traffic school more than once in a short time frame, but the second traffic school course will be longer.  For example, there are instances in California where you can take traffic school for a second violation, but you must take it in person (as opposed to online),  and it lasts twice as long.

Even if you are unsure if you can take traffic school for a second violation, always call the court to check since it will save you the very expensive insurance rate increases.

How Much Does a Cell Phone Ticket Cost?

Posted on: October 12th, 2011 by Traffic School

Many states have started passing cell phone laws that make it illegal to talk or text while driving.  These cell phone tickets can be quite expensive and in many states increase with each ticket you are given.  Here are some examples of how much cell phone tickets can cost.  This information  varies from state to state and county to county and should only serve as an example.

California Cell Phone Ticket Costs

  • First Ticket – $20 base fee with about $120 of administrative and court fees:  $140
  • Consequent Tickets – $50 base fee with $120 of administrative and court fees:  $170

New York Cell Phone Ticket Costs

  • Talking on Cell Phone Ticket – $100 plus mandatory surcharges and fees of up to $85:  $185
  • Texting While Driving Ticket – $150 plus mandatory surcharges and fees of up to $85:  $235

New Hampshire Cell Phone Tickets

  • Texting or Talking While Driving:  At least $100, can increase by court and number of offenses


Fighting a Cell Phone Ticket

Posted on: October 10th, 2011 by Traffic School

Did you get a cell phone ticket recently for talking or texting while driving?  Most states are beginning to add driving laws that do not allow people to talk and driver or text and drive.   These cell phone tickets usually are very expensive and many people do not understand the consequences of a cell phone ticket or how to fight against a cell phone ticket if you do not believe you are guilty.  However, you do have some options to fight your cell phone ticket.

1.  Print Out Your Call Record and Bring it to the Court:  If you were not talking or texting when you were pulled over, you should print out a verified copy of your call history or texting history from your cell phone provider and bring it to the court.  Show the court that you were not actually on your phone at the time you were given the ticket.  In most cases, having this type of proof will be enough for the court to dismiss the ticket.

2.  Consider Traffic School to Dismiss Your Cell Phone Ticket: In some states, getting a ticket for being on your cell phone is considered a moving violation, for which points will be added to your driving record, so you can take traffic school to dismiss the ticket.  Simply call and ask the court if you may take traffic school for your cell phone ticket, and complete the course.

3.  Hire a Professional to Fight Your Cell Phone Ticket:  You can also consider hiring a lawyer or ticket fighting agency to help you fight your cell phone ticket.  This is an especially good idea if the fine is very expensive or if you already have multiple moving violations on your record.  A professional will have experience fighting cell phone tickets and be able to help you win in court.

How to Calculate the Cost of a Traffic Ticket

Posted on: October 7th, 2011 by Traffic School

Did you recently receive a traffic ticket and can not figure out how much it will cost?  It can be very difficult to figure out the cost of a ticket especially when all you have is the violation codes listed on your ticket.  The easiest way to calculate how much your speeding ticket will cost is to follow these simple steps.

1.  Locate Your Traffic Ticket Violation Codes:  In order to calculate the cost of your traffic ticket, you have to know exactly what the violation code(s) are.  These numbers will be listed on the ticket itself.  Make sure to find every violation code if you were charged with more than one offense when you were pulled over.

2.  Check the Court Website:  Once you have the violation codes, check the website for the court or county, if there is one listed on your ticket.  Many courts are started to include traffic ticket calculators on their websites that will help you to calculate the ticket cost as well as any court or administrative fees.

3.  Call the Count Clerk’s Office:  If your court does not have a website or you were not able to calculate the cost, then your best bet is to call your County Clerk’s office.  They will be able to tell you the exact cost of the ticket so you can decide how you will take care of the ticket.


The Importance of a Clean Driving Record

Posted on: October 5th, 2011 by Traffic School

Many people do not realize just how important it is to have a clean driving record, but there are actually many benefits of having and maintaining a clean driving record. The key benefits are:

1.  Lower Auto Insurance Premiums:  Perhaps the greatest benefit of a clean driving record is the fact that your insurance premiums will be much less than someone with marks on their driving record, such as tickets or accidents.   In fact, someone with a clean driving record may pay up to 25% less than someone with just one speeding ticket on their record.

2.  Accident Forgiveness:  Many insurance companies offer accident forgiveness for drivers who have a clean driving record and are involved in their first accident.  Since these drivers have been safe drivers for so long, the insurance companies are willing to provide some leeway for their first accident.

3.  Lower Deductible for Vehicle Insurance:  Many insurance companies will offer not only a lower insurance premium, but also a lower deductible to people with clean driving records.  Having a lower deductible means you have to pay less out of pocket if you are involved in an accident.

4.  More Rental Car Options:  Some rental car companies will not rent to people with multiple violations on their driving record.  Having a clean driving history will allow you to rent from more companies.

5.  Easier Auto Loans:  Some auto loan companies, use a driver’s record as a factor in calculating their auto insurance rates.  They assume  that safer drivers are more responsible in general, and therefore may be willing to offer lower rates or a larger loan.

6.  Career Prospects and Stability:  For people who work in a transportation related job or are looking for work in that industry, having a clean driving record is vital.  Companies will not hire or keep drivers with multiple infractions on their records.

Luckily, if you do not have a clean driving record because your recently got a traffic ticket, you may still have time to save it.  Many states will allow drivers to take a traffic school or defensive driving course to dismiss their ticket and thus avoid points on your record.

Right of Way Laws and Traffic Tickets: Who Goes First?

Posted on: October 3rd, 2011 by Traffic School

Unsurprisingly, many traffic tickets and accidents are due to people not following right of way, or failure to yield, laws. These laws are extremely important because they let us know who should travel first at an intersection and ensure that we drive safely and avoid accidents and traffic tickets. Here are some of the most common right of way laws.

  • If you are approaching an intersection, you need to yield the right of way to traffic already in the intersection.
  • When drivers reach an intersection at the same time and are coming from opposite directions, a driver turning left must yield to a driver turning right or going straight.
  • When two or more driver’s approach an intersection with stop signs at the same time, you must yield to driver’s on your left.
  • Anytime you enter a road from a driveway, alley, or private road, you must yield to traffic already traveling on the street.
  • Drivers always must yield to pedestrians.

Factors Affecting Your Auto Insurance Rates

Posted on: October 1st, 2011 by Traffic School

For most of us, understanding how and why our auto insurance rates are what they are is extremely complex and difficult. It sometimes may seem like everyone you know pays less than you even though you are a better driver. Here are some of the most common factors that insurance companies use to determine auto insurance rates. Some may surprise you.

  • Driving record: Your driving record and specifically the number of citations you have on your driving record is a huge factor in insurance costs. The more traffic tickets you have, the higher your rate will be. This is especially true for any serious offenses like a DUI or reckless driving for example.
  • Family’s driving record: If you have a joint policy with your spouse or other family members, their driving record will also affect the rates of your insurance plan. Since all the driver’s are normally covered on all the cars, one poor driver can drive up everyone’s rates.
  • Your vehicle(s): The newer and more expensive your vehicle, the more expensive your insurance can be. However, sometimes the type of car you drive can also affect rates. Faster and sportier cars generally have higher insurance rates.
  • Gaps in coverage: Any gap in your insurance coverage, even for a day, makes you a riskier driver in the eyes of the insurance company. The more gaps you have in auto insurance coverage, the higher your premiums will be.
  • Credit Score: Few people are aware that your credit score actually impacts the price of your auto insurance. Insurance companies believe that people with higher credit scores are less likely to be involved in accidents and are safer drivers in general.
  • Where you live: Your zip code can be a major factor in determining your auto insurance rates. In areas with higher crime rates, car insurance tends to cost more. Also, urban areas or places with higher populations usually are more expensive because insurance companies believe that since there is more traffic the likelihood of an accident is higher.
  • Annual mileage: The more you drive each year, the higher your insurance costs. Insurance companies believe that the more you are on the road the more likely it is that you will be in an accident.