As far as traffic tickets go, CNBC considers New Jersey one of the most lenient states in America. Even so, drivers who have received traffic tickets in the Garden State may beg to differ. Many drivers have paid hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars out of pocket to either fight ticket fines or pay them.
MSN Money notes that the increase in insurance premiums for drivers who receive traffic tickets is also a cost worth considering. Insurance companies consider some traffic violations to be worse than others, which can lead to variations in how much the premium rises for each offense. Here are some examples of how insurance companies calculate rate increases per traffic violation:
- 7% increase for an accident where the driver was not at fault
- 7% increase for texting while driving
- 7% increase for running a red light
- 2% increase for a hit and run
- 2% increase for speeding
- 9% increase for a DUI
Rate increases are not the only possible penalties from an insurance company either. A driver may lose their insurance altogether. Once that happens, it can be difficult to find another insurance company willing to insure them for an affordable amount of money. Typically, if the premiums are 10% or more higher than the value of the insured car, drivers may lose their insurance.
One way that drivers have sought to keep insurance premiums low is by decreasing their coverage. If the car is paid off, they may remove comprehensive insurance from their policy. Others may remove collision insurance or go for the bare minimums on liability insurance. It is important to note, however, that while these may reduce monthly or annual insurance costs, in the event of an accident, the out-of-pocket cost to the driver may not be worth the difference in insurance savings.