The Negative Side of a Speeding Ticket in Florida
Speeding is almost unavoidable while driving. We all do it, especially when we think we won’t get caught.
Between changing speed limit zones and the plenty of distractions that drivers face, you’ll never be going exactly the speed limit. As a result, most police officers will give drivers some leeway before they decide to roll out and pull you over.
However, if you happen to have a lead foot, you’re going to eventually run into some trouble with the law due to your driving habits.
Getting a speeding ticket isn’t the end of the world, but it isn’t a pleasant experience, either. In fact, getting multiple tickets for speeding in a short period of time can cause you to pay more for your insurance.
Continue reading to learn all you need to know about the negative effects of speeding tickets in Florida.
The most immediate consequence of getting a speeding ticket is the hefty fine you’ll have to pay. For going only 10 MPH over the limit, you can get fined $204.
While this isn’t enough to break most people’s bank accounts, it’s still $204 that you have to give away. If you happen to get caught going 20 MPH over the limit, the fine jumps to $279.
The best way to avoid these penalties? Try your best to slow down. If you find yourself with a speeding fine to pay, it’s best to seek legal help to get you through it.
This can be a nightmare for most drivers.
The state of Florida will accept a ticket is a one-time payment that you make to forgive your driving infraction. Insurance companies, however, are not so forgiving.
Receiving multiple speeding tickets could also cause companies to categorize you as a high-risk driver. When it comes to saving money on insurance policies, this is a figurative death sentence.
People who have to purchase high-risk insurance for their vehicle often find that their monthly payments double (or even triple)!
Unless you have plenty of money lying around, you may have to make alterations to your lifestyle in order to accommodate these payments.
Plus, you might have to have high-risk insurance for years.
Like insurance increases, license points are never a pleasant consequence to deal with.
While you may not feel the effects at first, you can have your license suspended in the state of Florida if you accumulate 12 points on your license within one year.
These points don’t have to all come from speeding. Running red lights, failing to stop at stop signs, and reckless driving will all put points on your license.
According to the Florida DMV, if you get 24 points within a three-year period, you’ll lose your license for 12 months!
If you take a second to imagine what it would be like to not have a car for a year, you’ll realize how inconvenient driver’s license points can be.
Many insurance companies, however, will increase your monthly payment just for receiving points on your license. While you technically wouldn’t be a high-risk driver, they may still view you as a liability.
Yet another headache that arises from getting a speeding ticket. In the past, you had to take a traffic course at the DMV. Today, due to the innovation of the Internet, traffic courses can be taken online.
However, this does not necessarily make it any less unpleasant.
These courses include topics such as alcohol abuse, traffic rules, Florida driving regulations, and defensive driving techniques.
In addition to the time you have to spend on this course, you also have to pay to enroll. Furthermore, since this a state-sponsored driving course, you’ll also have to pass an exam at the end.
These courses aren’t all bad. They’ll let you avoid getting points on your license from a speeding ticket, and they could also decrease your insurance rates if taken voluntarily.
These courses last from approximately 4 to 12 hours, but ones for speeding generally end up being around six hours long.
The issue, however, is that you can only take these courses once within a 12-month period, and only five times total in your lifetime.
This means that if you get two speeding tickets in the same year, you’re going to end up with points on your license. It’s also not uncommon for people to exhaust their driving course enrollments during their first 15 to 20 years of driving.
Any tickets received after this will put points on their license. As you can see, getting a speeding ticket carries consequences that are often far greater than people first expect.
Mandatory Court Hearing
If you happen to get pulled over for going 30+ MPH over the speed limit, you don’t get the luxury of paying a fine or taking the points and walking away. You have no choice but to appear in court according to state law.
At this point, you have two options. You can attend the hearing yourself, or hire a lawyer to attend the hearing for you.
If you know anything about the US justice system, you’ll be aware that it is never a good idea to go to a hearing without legal representation. Regardless of how you choose to appear, you will be at the complete mercy of the judge.
The scary part about going to court is that you don’t know how the judge is going to react to your offense.
Some judges may simply ask you to pay a hefty fine and send you on your way. Others may wish to make an example out of you and suspend your license.
Other judges may lie somewhere in between and require you to take an extensive defensive driving course as punishment for your infraction.
Getting a Speeding Ticket is No Joke
Your first ticket will likely not be an issue.
However, your second ticket and onward can mess things up for you when it comes to maintaining a clean driving record.
It’s important to preemptively develop safe driving habits so that you can avoid getting a ticket in the first place. None of us are perfect, and mistakes are bound to happen.
Need to learn more about traffic laws and how to handle tickets? Check out our blog.