Traffic tickets are the bane of many a driver’s existence (as this blog routinely points out!). And, unfortunately, they are often the gift that keeps on giving. That’s because the points that come attached to many traffic infractions --including speeding, red lights, and other moving violations -- stay on your record longer than you might think. The damage points on your license do is extensive and long-lasting.
When you consider how points can increase your insurance, how they may eventually result in the suspension of your license and can even cause you to lose your job you’ll begin to understand why it’s important to know all there is to know about the point system – including how long they stay on your record. And why we always suggest you fight your traffic tickets.
Technically, points stay on your record FOREVER, but will only affect you for 3 years.
That’s right, the points you get from a variety of traffic infractions follow you around like pesky critters for 36 months, just under half the length of your average marriage.
Like a rude houseguest, they stick around for longer than they are wanted and their behavior gets increasingly worse. By that we mean the longer they are there and the more of them you accumulate, the more damaging they become.
According to insurance.com – which analyzed information from over 32,000 insurance policies – the average increase to insurance from a single ticket with points was 18 percent. Your third ticket with points in a three year period will boost your insurance by 50 percent.
Just to make it clear: that means if you pay an insurance premium of $1,000, points can skyrocket that figure to $1,500.
Insurance rate increases are only part of the problem with points, however, and not the most damaging.
Accumulation of traffic points is one of the easiest ways to get your license suspended. In Florida, the amount of points and the length of your suspension are as follows:
- 12 points earned within 12 months results in a 30-day suspension
- 18 points earned within 18 months results in a 3-month suspension
- 24 points earned within 36 months results in a 12-month suspension
If 12 points in a year seem like a lot to you, it isn’t. Some tickets like speeding that results in a crash and leaving the scene of an accident burden you with 6 points per infraction, meaning that getting only 2 in a year will result in a license suspension.
If you double that in the three year period points stay on your license, you’re looking at a year without your license!
Want to know how many points different traffic infractions give you? Take Just look at this helpful list the State of Florida decided to hide away on their website.
But even a suspended license is not the worst possible outcome of points on your license. Believe it or not, there is a law that allows employers to consider “misconduct” – which can include points on your license as a reason to deny unemployment benefits.
Being laid off may not be bad enough, now your former bosses can deny you unemployment because of the points you got for speeding in a school zone. It sounds nonsensical, but it is true. Check out the law here:
What does it all mean? Florida’s traffic point system is something you want to avoid if at all possible.
And that’s just another reason – may be the best reason – why strongly suggest to “ALWAYS FIGHT YOUR TRAFFIC TICKETS.”
Got the point? Don’t get points!
For more information on traffic ticket points or to fight your ticket call Unger & Kowitt at 866-374-8355.