You know it will hurt when you see those strobing lights in your rearview mirror. Your immediate concern is likely the cost of the moving violation ticket you know you’re about to receive. Nevertheless, you should also be concerned about its effect on how accessible cheap car insurance is for you going forward.
Moving Violations Will Raise the Cost of Your Car Insurance
There’s no insurance industry-wide definition of what a high-risk driver is, but even one moving violation is a step in the wrong direction. A moving violation is a ticket for behind-the-wheel mistakes such as speeding, not observing a stoplight or stop sign, or reckless driving. Parking tickets, on the other hand, are not moving violations, and they generally won’t increase your car insurance rates.
But just one DUI conviction will put you in the high-risk designation by virtually every insurer. So will at-fault accidents, especially if others are injured, and other more serious violations.
How the Point System Can Increase Your Car Insurance Rates
Most U.S. states have a point system for drivers. Points are penalties. The points per offense and allowed maximum points before license suspension vary by state, but each moving violation will result in a tally of points you don’t want no matter where you live.
Car insurance companies pay close attention to a driver’s points. After accumulating a certain number of them, the violator is considered to be a high-risk driver.
Here’s the tricky part: every car insurance company has its own definition of what it calls a high-risk driver. So after just one moving violation ticket, your car insurance rates could be heading in the wrong direction, depending on your insurer’s system for defining a high-risk driver.
Some Factors that Increase Rates for Drivers
Some factors that determine whether you will qualify for affordable car insurance are out of your control. For instance, young drivers, those between the ages of 16 and 25, are considered to be at higher risk for speeding and reckless driving. This category of drivers also has more accidents.
Males are considered higher risk than females, so they’ll generally pay more for coverage—especially when they’re younger. Another factor that is less in your control is your location.
But one of the easiest factors to control—and one that will get you in the worst trouble financially—is your behavior behind the wheel. If you drive over the speed limit or drive recklessly, there is a high chance you’ll fail to qualify for cheap rates on full coverage car insurance.
Full Coverage vs. Liability
Full coverage car insurance includes collision and comprehensive coverage. Collision pays for damages to your car from a car accident, regardless of who is at fault.
Comprehensive coverage concerns damage or loss of your vehicle resulting from everything other than road accidents. This includes fire, flood, theft, vandalism, strong winds, and other causes.
If you become a high-risk driver due to moving violations, your rates for full coverage could escalate to the point where it’s no longer an affordable car insurance choice for you.
You no longer qualify for average rates and might only be able to get liability coverage. This is minimal coverage that’s not ideal, but it’s cheap car insurance. The downside is that liability coverage will only pay for the damage to other vehicles, passengers, and property. It won’t cover the cost of repairing your own vehicle in a collision or other damaging event in an at-fault state.
Talk With Your Independent Insurance Agent
An independent insurance agent is one who doesn’t work for a single insurance provider. Instead, this kind of agent represents multiple lines of coverage from several competing brands.
Your independent insurance agent can, therefore, shop around for coverage from various lines if you have been rejected for coverage from one car insurer as the result of moving violations in your recent driving record.
Ready for a little good news? Your driving record clears up over time as long as you choose to drive safely and don’t receive any additional moving violation tickets. So even if you must get liability coverage or pay higher rates for coverage, your situation will “heal” over time, and you’ll eventually qualify for more affordable rates again.
Find Affordable Car Insurance Quotes Online Today!
Your independent agent at Freeway Insurance will help you find average rates for car insurance even if you’re a higher-risk driver. Get a quote online, call (800) 777-5620 to chat with an agent, or check out our California locations page to find an agent near you for an in-person meeting.