Got a speeding ticket? It happens to the best of us. Whether you’re rushing to work or listening to your favorite song, your mind wanders, and you stop paying attention to your speed. For whatever reason, you see the blue lights flashing in your rearview, and you get a speeding ticket. Speeding is one of the most common driving offenses. In 2020, California issued over 90,000 speeding tickets a day, which equals $34 million in a year.
Nobody likes getting a speeding ticket. Although the experience can be overwhelming, there are many options for your next steps. In this guide, we will explain your options after receiving a speeding ticket in California.
How Much Are Speeding Tickets in California?
If you got a speeding ticket, your biggest worry is most likely the price. Thankfully, California has a low base fee. However, the state adds surcharges that significantly increase the price. For example, you could end up paying $200 for a ticket that was originally $35.
Due to these factors, it is challenging to pin an exact dollar amount on a speeding ticket in California. However, you should prepare to pay around $200 if you’re speeding 15 mph over the speed limit and about $500 for going 25 mph over.
However, it’s possible that getting caught speeding could lead to more serious charges, like a misdemeanor or suspended license. If the officer believes you’re driving recklessly or have a history of speeding, you could find yourself with a $1,000 fine or a court date.
How Many Points Is a Speeding Ticket?
Most speeding tickets in California will result in one point on your license. However, certain circumstances will result in more points or worse. Below we’ve listed a few of these unique circumstance.
- If you’re caught speeding while driving under the influence, your license will be suspended immediately.
- The first offense of speeding over 100 mph is two points on your license.
- If you receive more than four points in a year, you can have your license revoked or suspended.
- If you receive more than six points in two years, you can have your license revoked or suspended.
- If you receive more than eight points in three years, you can have your license revoked or suspended.
For drivers under 18, punishments are more serious, resulting in suspended licenses or worse. This includes:
- If a minor is convicted of a DUI, they can get their license suspended or revoked.
- If a minor receives more than three points in a year, they can get their license suspended.
- If a minor fails to pay a fine, they can get their license suspended.
It’s important to note that your speeding ticket remains on your record for three years in California. After three years, the point can no longer be used against you, and you can request the DMV to remove it from your record. However, severe driving offenses like speeding while driving under the influence will remain on your record for 10 years.
Will My Insurance Increase?
While the ticket itself is expensive, there are other costs you should consider—your insurance rate, for example. According to Nerd Wallet, the average 35-year-old California driver will pay over 37 percent more yearly for full coverage after receiving one speeding ticket. Insurance companies pin drivers who receive speeding tickets as “risky drivers.” Contact your insurance office to see how much your rate will increase. Try to negotiate your rate increase if you receive a speeding ticket, especially if it’s your first offense.
What Happens if I Ignore the Ticket?
The number one thing you should NOT do is ignore the speeding ticket. It’s not going anywhere. Failure to pay a speeding ticket in California could bring serious consequences. Unpaid tickets could lead to additional fines, a revoked or suspended license, or jail time.
It’s important to resolve your problem before the ticket’s due date. You should contact your local court if you lost your ticket or didn’t get a notice.
Ways To Resolve a Traffic Ticket in California
What should you do if you receive a speeding ticket in California? You have a few options. You can either pay the ticket, fight the ticket, negotiate with the courts, or attend a course. Dealing with a speeding ticket is no fun, but to help you go through this process easier, we will explain ways you can resolve a speeding ticket in California.
Pay the Ticket
The easiest and quickest way to resolve a speeding ticket is to pay for the ticket. You can pay the ticket if you know you were speeding or don’t want to go through the hassle. If you choose this route, you can easily pay through the county’s website, in person or by phone. However, if you feel this was a mistake or didn’t feel like the price was fair, you can choose to fight the ticket.
Fight the Ticket
It is possible to fight the ticket in California. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not as complicated as people make it seem. It’s possible to save money and a point on your license. It would be best if you asked the office of the county where your ticket was issued to tell you how they tracked your speed.
You also hire a traffic ticket attorney to appear in court to help you resolve the case. If the officer fails to show up at the court, you might get let off the hook—but you shouldn’t rely on that. In the meantime, consider the questions you’d ask the prosecutor and how you can prove your innocence.
Go to Traffic School
If you’ve received a speeding ticket for 25 mph over the speed limit, you will receive a point on your license. Although traffic school won’t get you out of a ticket, it could help mask that point. This will help you save money in the long run by helping keep your insurance rates from rising. If you choose this route, ensure it’s a course certified with the DMV.
Getting a speeding ticket is no fun. However, there are ways to get through it seamlessly. If you’ve received a speeding ticket in California and need cheaper insurance, Saferoad Insurance Services is here for you! Talk to our insurance agency in Long Beach for a quote today.