What to Do If You Get a Traffic Ticket
In a worst-case scenario, a traffic ticket can raise your car insurance rates for up to five years as a result.
You could lose a good-driver discount, which can be as high as 20% - although many insurance companies let your first ticket slide.
Many insurers add a surcharge to your policy - usually around $150 per ticket for up to 3 years. Others may raise your rates by up to 20%.
Some states prevent insurance companies from raising your rates as long as you only get one traffic ticket every 3 years.
What to Do if You Get a Ticket
The best strategy is to avoid getting a ticket by driving carefully and obeying the traffic laws, but if you do get one, it always pays to fight it in court if needed.
You always have the chance of winning for a good reason or if the police officer doesn't show up. Pro tip: When getting a traffic ticket, refrain from getting angry at the officer. Don't say things like "I'll see you in court". Otherwise, the officer will make a special effort to be present.
Even if you lose in court, the judge may reduce the fine and points, especially if you have a good driving record.
If it's your first or even second traffic ticket, you may not even need to go to court to have it expelled from your driving record.
Many states allow you to go to traffic school (which you can attend online these days), and as a result, the ticket will not appear on your record or affect your car insurance.
3 Steps Every Car Buyer Needs to Take to Save Maximum MoneyThe key to getting the best deal is to gather price or lease bids from as many local dealers as possible. Then shop that best price around until no one can beat it. Here are the steps:
Step 1 Get Prices From My Trusted NetworkSelect the vehicle you're interested in to see if there are local dealers in my network who will provide you with their best upfront price. You will get direct access to an internet sales manager who you can further negotiate with online (no need to visit dealership).
Step 2 Get Prices From TrueCar / CarsDirectTrueCar, and CarsDirect are my top 2 online price quote recommendations. These services show you pre-negotiated prices from dealers closest to you - and the deals are usually pretty decent. But remember, you can still negotiate further.
Step 3 Complete my ChecklistFollow this up with my checklist to make sure you squeeze out every last bit of savings.
- Gregg Fidan
Each week, I'll keep you up-to-date on the latest car deals and news that might affect your purchase. This includes...
- Best Rebates, Incentives, and Lease Deals
- Latest Car Buying Scams and Tricks
- The Best & Worst Time to Buy a Car
- Which Cars You Should Avoid