Slow Down! How Speeding Tickets Can Affect You
Posted on Dec 3, 2013 10:47am PST
Speeding is the number one ticket police officers write. They can have
a significant impact on your insurance, and will show up on your criminal
driver history. (Personally, I've seen speeding tickets show up on
driver histories as far back as 1988.) In Georgia, speeding is a misdemeanor
traffic crime, punishable by up to 12 months in jail and a $1000 fine.
With regard to how a speeding ticket can affect your insurance, below
is the number of points you will receive by pleading guilty to different
- Speeding 15-18 over = 2 points
- Speeding 19-23 over = 3 points
- Speeding 24-33 over = 4 points
- Speeding 34+ over = 6 points
In reality, if you do the math, speeding doesn't save you much travel
time, even on long road trips. So, slow down! But, if you find yourself
pulled over due to a speeding offense, here's what you should do.
- Immediately pull over as far off the road as possible, especially if you
are on the side of a highway. Time and again, other motorists lose control
of their cars and strike the police officer and civilians on the side
of the road. Your police officer will appreciate this courtesy.
- Be polite. Police officers generally do not intend to spend their day writing
speeding tickets. While there are exceptions, the majority of officers
are patrolling our streets looking for more serious crimes, such as possession
of drugs, DUI, and fugitives. Once they lawfully stop a vehicle for speeding,
the police officers can legally investigate these crimes.
- Once the officer approaches your vehicle, remain calm and polite, hand
over your license and proof of insurance, sign your ticket, and drive
off safely. The time to consider fighting the ticket is at home or with
a lawyer. Do not argue with the police officer on the side of the road.
- Once you're home, you have 3 options to consider: Pay the ticket, negotiate
the ticket, or fight the ticket.
If you pay your ticket, you will not have to appear in court. Most counties
have an online payment system, and the points will be assessed to you
and made known to your car insurance company.
Negotiating the ticket is a bit more challenging, and will require you
to speak with the prosecutor assigned to your case. Keep in mind that
prosecutor will have a caseload of at least 500 cases, so the chance of
him or her returning your phone call before your court date is not very
likely. However, it is your legal right to pursue that option. You may
have the ability to use a nolo contendre ("no contest") plea,
which will keep the points off of your license.
However, the speeding ticket may still be reported to your insurance company,
regardless if points are removed.
The most involved option is fighting your ticket. To successfully fight
your ticket, it is recommended that you hire a lawyer to ensure the proper
court procedures are followed.