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Hawaii Traffic School

Posted on: April 30th, 2012 by Traffic School

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Although no one ever wakes up in the morning and sets out to get a ticket, it happens to people everyday and happens to most of us at one time or another. Many people think that their only option is to pay the ticket and move on, but there are actually other options out there that can save you money on your ticket. In fact, the cost of just one ticket can end up being over $1000 for many people when you factor in all the costs that come with a ticket. To better illustrate the effects that one ticket can have, let’s use an example. Meet Paul. Paul just got a speeding ticket for $200 and his monthly insurance costs are $200 monthly.

Paul Can Just Pay the Ticket: $2700

Paul’s first option is to do what 90% of other people do and just pay the ticket. What many people don’t understand when they decide to just pay their ticket, is that the costs go far beyond what is written on the ticket itself. First of all, in addition to the fine on the ticket, there will be an average of $100 added to the ticket for court fees. This makes the ticket cost $300. In addition, even though there isn’t a points system in Hawaii, the ticket will be reported to your insurance company. As a result they will increase your insurance rates. The average increase is 20%. In this case, a 20% increase would raise insurance rates by $40 monthly. The ticket will stay on your record for five years, which means an extra $40 every month for 60 months, or $2400 extra in insurance costs. That means that just one speeding ticket actually will cost $2700.

Paul Can Take Hawaii Traffic School: $335 or less

Paul’s second option is to get permission to take online Hawaii traffic school. Many courts will allow you to take traffic school online so that the ticket is dismissed and not reported to your insurance company. This will save Paul $2400 in insurance costs. He may still have to pay the full fine of the ticket and court fees, $300, but in many cases the fines are reduced if someone takes traffic school. The average cost of traffic school in Hawaii is $35, so the most Paul will pay is $335 for the ticket fine and traffic school online.

Paul Can Fight the Ticket in Court: $0 or $2700

Finally, Paul can choose to fight the ticket in court and take his chances winning his case. If he wins Paul will not have to pay anything for the ticket and it will be completely removed from his record. If Paul loses however, he will lose the option to take traffic school and will end up spending $2700 on the ticket, court costs, and insurance rate increases.

Alabama Traffic School and Alabama Defensive Driving

Posted on: March 9th, 2012 by Traffic School

In Alabama traffic school is most commonly called defensive driving and is handled by the individual counties in Alabama.  That means that rather than having a central agency that creates the laws and regulations for traffic school, traffic tickets, and speeding tickets in the state, each individual county clerk and county court are responsible determining who can take Alabama traffic school and who can not.

However even though the individual counties control Alabama traffic school and Alabama defensive driving, that does not mean that there are not state wide driving laws and points.  In fact, Alabama adds points to your driving record for all speeding and traffic tickets.  Below you can find the common points associated with Alabama traffic tickets:

  • Speeding in Excess of Posted Limits: 2 points
  • Speeding In Excess of 85 MPH (86 or above): 5 points
  • Disregarding Traffic Control Device (stop sign, traffic light): 3 points
  • Following Too Closely: 3 points
  • Illegal Passing: 3 points
  • Wrong Side of Road: 4 points
  • Failure to Yield Right of Way: 5 points
  • Passing Stopped School Bus: 5 points
  • Reckless Driving: 6 points
  • Any charge involving driving under the influence without mandatory license suspension: 6 points

In some cases you can have tickets and points removed from your record for completing an online or in person traffic school or defensive driving course.  The easiest way to find out if you can take Alabama traffic school is to contact the court listed on your ticket.  When you call ask to speak to the traffic violation dept or traffic court, and nicely ask whether or not you can take Alabama defensive driving.  Sometimes it will be granted right away and in some counties you may need to appear in front of a judge to request traffic school.  Always check your ticket as well because sometimes it is listed on the ticket itself.

The cost of Alabama traffic school will vary between counties and could be as low as $20 or as high as $300 for Alabama defensive driving.  On average, Alabama traffic school costs around $130.  In the long run this is much cheaper than auto insurance rate increases.  On average, car insurance rates increase by 20% for the first ticket, 35% for the second ticket, and 50% for the third ticket.  since points stay on your record for 5 years without taking traffic school in Alabama, that means you will pay those increase for 5 YEARS.

Let’s imagine you pay $100 monthly for auto insurance and then you get your first ticket.  You will pay an extra $20 per month for 5 years, or 60 months.  That’s an extra $1200!!

What if you have 2 tickets?  You $120 monthly auto insurance rates, from your first ticket, would increase to $162 on average in Alabama.  That is an extra $62 monthly from having no points on your record for 5 years, or 60 months.  That’s an extra $3,720 over the course of 5 years,  Would you rather just pay for Alabama traffic school?

Therefore even if traffic school costs $200, which seems like a lot, it is worth it in the long run and will save you lots of money.  Taking Alabama traffic school and Alabama defensive driving is a wise and financially smart decision for anyone who has an Alabama traffic ticket. 

How Much a Speeding Ticket Cost? The $4,685 Speeding Ticket!

Posted on: September 26th, 2011 by Traffic School

Most of us have been pulled over at one time or another in our lives and it is extremely easy to just pay it rather than deal with the hassle of fighting it in court or taking traffic school. We think, “How much can just one ticket really cost me over time?” Well let’s explore that question a little by looking at a common example.

Let’s imagine you are on a joint auto insurance policy with your spouse. You pay $200 monthly for this policy. You got one ticket 6 months ago for speeding, just 10 miles over the limit. Luckily you live in a state that ignores the first traffic citation, so your insurance rates didn’t change. However yesterday your spouses called and let you know they were pulled over for making an illegal left turn. Let’s look at what this one small ticket can actually cost you over time.

First let’s look at the cost of the ticket. The ticket itself was for $150, but after the court fees and additional costs, it really ended up costing $365.

Then, since it was the second offense on your joint policy, there is a 20% surcharge added to your insurance rates. In your state, this rate increase lasts for 6 years. Not only that, you lost your “safe driver discount” which gave you an extra 10% discount off. That means in full, your auto insurance is going to increase by 30% each month for the next 6 years.

What does that mean over time? First we have the cost of the ticket – $365. On top of that, we have a 30% increase to your auto insurance each month, meaning you now pay $260 monthly. Each year that is an additional $720 you will pay for your auto insurance. In six years that this will stay on your record, that is an additional $4,320. When we add the ticket cost to this, you have just spent almost $5000 on that ticket.

So what can you do to avoid that? Essentially you have two options. The first is to take traffic school to dismiss your ticket. The second is to fight your ticket in court. Both cost substantially less than the $4685 you would have spent. Traffic school courses are usually about $35 and a lawyer can cost around $150.