Speeding Tickets: How Much Are They Really Costing You?
We all hate to get stopped by the police for speeding. Nonetheless, speeding tickets hold the top spot for the most common traffic violation in Canada. So why is it so hard for us to slow down and obey the posted speed limit?
For some of us, it’s a planning problem. We fail to leave in time to get to our destination without pushing the pedal to the metal. Still others don’t believe it’s a big deal to get a speeding ticket so they are willing to drive as fast as they please and pay the ticket.
If you fall into the second group of drivers, it’s important to consider that the cost of speeding extends beyond the price of the ticket. Speeding tickets can:
Increase your insurance rates
Lead to fines
Add demerit points to your driving record
Usually, one speeding ticket won’t do you too much harm. But, multiple speeding tickets within a two or three-year period will significantly increase your insurance rates. NerdWallet.com estimates that drivers with three or more speeding tickets pay $200 to $1,000 more per year for insurance.
In addition to insurance rate hikes, speeding tickets add demerit points to your driving record. The number of demerit points you receive is based on how fast you were driving over the speed limit. For example, driving 16 to 29 km/hour above the speed limit will earn you three demerits. Driving 50 km/hour over the limit will earn you six demerits. If you receive 9-14 demerit points your licence could be suspended. You will have to pay $50 for a demerit interview and explain why you should be allowed to keep your licence, but the ultimate decision about whether your licence should be suspended will be out of your hands.
Remember, by paying a speeding ticket you are admitting guilt, which means the violation will automatically be added to your driving record. So, if you believe the officer made an error, you will need to dispute the ticket and perhaps hire a lawyer to avoid demerits.
The bottom line is it’s more cost-effective to slow down and drive the speed limit. It’s also safer for you and the other drivers on the road. If you are not sure how your current driving record is impacting your insurance rates, talk to your insurance broker.
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