What is Speeding Ticket and its Consequences

By Randy Luton | Last Updated: 04/14/2023

Key Insights:

  • Speeding tickets are common among teen and young drivers.
  • Even one speeding ticket can increase the cost of your car insurance by a huge amount.
  • Every state has its own rules and speeding tickets fines and it can vary a lot from state to state.
  • Speed limits are also of different types based on different rules.
  • The positive side is; the driver can try to get affordable car insurance by combining different discount types.

We are sure you must have heard about; “speeding thrills but kills”. Speeding is considered an infraction or misdemeanor depending on the laws in your state. Every year almost 42 million speeding tickets are issued in the USA.

Speeding leads to more than 9 thousand deaths every year in our country. And it is one of the most common traffic violation tickets that almost every driver gets at least once in their lifetime.

This blog is written to resolve all the confusion around speeding tickets, its fine, and laws. Keep reading till the end you will know everything about the ticket, important speeding ticket statistics, and its consequences.

What is a Speeding Ticket?

A speeding ticket is used to describe a traffic violation by the driver in which he or she exceeds the lawful driving speed of the state or city. In simple terms; it is a type of traffic violation ticket that a police officer gives when you get caught for over speeding.

Every state has its own rules for speeding violations. In some states, you will get a written citation only and in some, you will have to pay a monetary fine.

Citation vs Ticket

Drivers are trying to understand the difference between citation and ticket. There are a lot of confusions and myths about citations and speeding tickets. Some drivers get a citation while others get a ticket for over speeding. More than 112,000 citations are issued every year. More or less both are the same and are often used interchangeably. The ticket is used in a casual way while the citation is used in a legal way.

Related Read >> Common Myths About Auto Insurance

Is a Speeding Ticket a Misdemeanor?

In most situations, a speeding ticket is considered an infraction so only points will be added to your record. But there are some scenarios where a driver commits speeding offenses like driving at 36 mph in a 20 mph zone. In those scenarios, it will be considered a misdemeanor. There are some states that also count speeding as a felony.

Three Types of Speed Limits

Most of us are not aware of the fact that there are multiple types of speed limits based on different criteria. Below are the three common types of speed limits:

1. “Basic” or “Fundamental” Speed Limits

In this case the driver might be at or below speed limit but still unsafe for others. But the officer will have to prove why you were unsafe in that area at that speed.

2. “Maximum” or “Absolute” Speed Limits

Absolute speed limit is when a driver exceeds the speed limit in an area by any amount.

3. “Per se”, “Presumed”, or “Prima Facie” Speed Limits

Presumed speed limit is a bit complex to understand for common citizens like us. In easy terms; if an officer believes that your speed was not suitable to the conditions at that time then you will get a speeding ticket.

Speeding Tickets Fines by State

We keep saying that speeding tickets and speeding laws vary from state to state. We know it can be confusing and frustrating sometimes to understand why you get a lower fine in one place and higher in another.

To help you understand this; we have created a list of all the states in our country along with the speeding tickets fines and average full coverage insurance rates:

StateMaximum Speeding Ticket FineAverage Full Coverage Insurance Increase Post-speedingAverage Annual Full Coverage Premium With Speeding Ticket
District of Columbia$300$347$2,003
New Hampshire$350$261$1,534
New Jersey$200$253$2,012
New Mexico$200$278$1,699
New York$600$234$2,561
North Carolina$100$739$2,053
North DakotaVaries$253$1,522
Rhode Island$250+$417$2,435
South Carolina$200$309$1,817
South Dakota$500$283$1,938
West Virginia$500$263$1,765

Consequences of Speeding Ticket

Now let’s talk about the consequences you will have to face with a speeding ticket.

  1. Monetary Fines
    The first punishment you will get is to pay for the fine as per the rules in your state. The law enforcement officer will decide the number of fines based on different factors.
  2. License Suspension
    If your record has multiple tickets and the speeding ticket is also added to the list then there are chances that your license might get suspended.
  3. Insurance Premiums
    You will have to pay higher insurance premiums after a speeding ticket. Every insurance company will consider you as a dangerous or unsafe driver and you will get higher rates at the time of policy renewal.
  4. Traffic School Joining
    You might be forced to join traffic school by a judge to improve your driving skills and work your speed control.
  5. Jail
    Final and the most unfavorable option is; jail time. Based on your record and previous tickets you might get some jail time. You can hire a lawyer to save you and bail you out but the end result is in the hand of the judge.

What Happens if You Don’t Pay an Out of State Speeding Ticket?

Out of state speeding ticket is issued when you cross the speed limit in a state where you do not live and also where you don’t have a valid registration. We can understand that you might be thinking about ignoring that ticket as the police in your city know nothing about it.

But it is not true. Most of the states issue a report of speeding tickets recorded in their state to the DMVs of other states. Also, there are chances that an arrest warrant might get issued on your name for ignoring the ticket for a longer time.

Can I Negotiate A Speeding Ticket?

You can try negotiation for your speeding ticket and this involves two scenarios. One was when the prosecutor was present and another when no prosecutor was available in the traffic court. Every time the objective of negotiating for a speeding ticket is to get a better deal than you would get if proven guilty.

If a prosecutor is there in the court then you can talk to him or her and explain your situation. The end result depends on the prosecutor.

If the prosecutor is not present then you can try to negotiate with the citing officer. Try to convince the officer for a deal that involves guilt for a less serious offense.

What Is The Cost Of Insurance After A Speeding Ticket?

Car insurance rates increase a lot after a speeding ticket? A driver with a speeding ticket is considered an unsafe or dangerous driver. Such drivers get higher insurance rates as compared to other drivers.

On average; the car insurance rates increase by 34% after we get a speeding ticket. Again this can vary from state to state so this can be less than 30% in your state and more than 35% in another state.

The same goes for companies; car insurance rates can also vary from company to company. Each company has its own way of calculating the rates and it can change for each driver. As a result; it is always advisable to check the rates before making any decision.

Can You Get a Speeding Ticket Dismissed?

It is difficult to get a speeding ticket dismissed but you can try for the dismissal of your speeding ticket, the result depends on the judge and the law enforcement officer? Below are some ways your speeding ticket can get dismissed:

  1. If a police officer makes a mistake
    In case the law enforcement officer made a huge blunder in the trial. Keep a check on the testimony and notes of the officer.
  2. If the officer fails to show up
    This is the most common reason that leads to the dismissal of a speeding ticket. If your officer never shows up at the time of your hearing then you can ask for dismissal of your ticket.
  3. The information on your ticket is incorrect
    If your officer has recorded the wrong information on the traffic tickets then also you can try for dismissal. It can be an incorrect license number or driver plate number or even a wrong date that can lead to the dismissal of the ticket.
  4. It is the first offense
    You can try to convince the judge to let you go if it is your first offense. The chances of dismissal also increase if you have a clean driving record and you are an experienced driver with good grades, community service, etc.
  5. You can prove that you were not at that scene
    If the ticket was issued in your name and you can prove that you were not present at the time mentioned on the ticket then also your ticket will get dismissed.

How Long Does a Speeding Ticket Stay on Your Record?

Most of the states have a points system to check the driving eligibility of a driver. For every traffic law violation, a driver is assigned demerit points. These points are allotted based on several factors in every case.

An officer will check your driving speed and will compare how much over you were driving above the assigned limit. For example, if a driver was over 11-15 mph over the allowed limit then 3 points will be added. If the speed was over 16-25 mph then 4 points will be added.

A higher number of points leads to consequences like suspension of license. Talking about the effect of these points on the record; every state has its own laws for it. Generally, a point stays for almost 3 to 5 years on a record. In some states, it can be more than 5 years and in some states, traffic tickets stay on the record even if the points are removed over time.

How To Lower Insurance After Speeding Ticket?

We know that you are getting higher insurance rates because of your speeding ticket. Below are some ways you can try to get cheaper car insurance with speeding tickets:

Shop Around

The best way is to get quotes from different companies and compare them. By comparing quotes from different companies you will get a clear picture of what other companies are providing at a similar cost.

Bundle Your Policies

We all need several policies like homeowners insurance, life insurance, and auto insurance. When we decide to buy all these policies from one company we become an important and loyal customer for them. This leads to lower car insurance rates.

Take Advantage Of Discounts

There are multiple discounts available with different companies like good driver discount, new car discount, students discount, etc. By combining different discounts your car insurance rates can reduce to higher extents.

Take A Defensive Driving Course

The defensive driving course helps you to improve your driving skills and judgment ability on the road. If you complete a defensive driving course then you will be considered as a safe driver and safe drivers file fewer claims.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • How much is the fine for speeding tickets in our country?

    Every state has its own laws and fines for traffic tickets. Plus there are a lot of different factors that affect the speeding fine for the driver. On average, a speeding fine is around $135 but it can increase to even $2000.

  • Is overspeeding a criminal offense?

    Speeding is not generally considered a crime if you pay your fine on time. But this offense will appear in your record based on how it was dealt with.

  • How many penalty points are added to the record for speeding?

    3 points are generally added to the record for a speeding offense.

  • What will happen if I don’t pay my speeding fine on time?

    You will get 28 days to pay your fine and present it in front of the judge (if asked). If you fail to pay the fine at this time then it can lead to late fees, license suspension, involvement of collection agency, and arrest warrant.

  • How long will the speeding points last on my record?

    The effect of speeding will stay on your record for a minimum of 4 years and in case of serious offense with speeding it can go up to 11 years.

  • Which States have the highest number of speeding tickets issued?

    Here are the top 5 states with the highest number of speeding tickets: Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, California, Texas

Over To You!

The most expensive speeding ticket ever issued is $290,000 to a Swedish driver. So if you are thinking that you might get only a few hundred bucks fine then you are wrong. And the consequences of speeding tickets are worse than the fine.

Are you looking for affordable car insurance rates after a speeding ticket? We are here for you! Get in touch with us today and we will help you to get a list of all the top car insurance companies in your state that can provide cheap rates to you.

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  • Checked the latest statistics about speeding tickets on the Law KC website on 20th March 2022.
  • Referred to Rhino Lawyers for more driving statistics in the USA on 20th March 2022.
  • Referred to Off the record to check if a speeding ticket is considered a misdemeanor or not on 20th March 2022.
  • Visited Forbes.com how much the insurance rate increases after a speeding ticket on 20th March 2022.
  • Checked the most expensive speeding ticket on the Credit Donkeys on 20th March 2022

Editorial Guidelines: The above is meant as general information to help you understand the different aspects of auto insurance. This information does not refer to any specific auto insurance policy. Coverages and other features vary between insurers, vary by state, and are not available in all states. References to costs of coverages/repair, average or typical premiums, amounts of losses, deductibles, etc., are indicative and may not apply to your situation. We encourage you to speak to our insurance representative and to read your policy contract to fully understand your coverages.

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Randy Luton is the Founder and CEO of RateForce. He is passionate about InsurTech services and has in-depth knowledge about the auto insurance sector of the USA.