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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.

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