I get emails all the time from people visiting South Florida, especially Palm Beach, who had their trip ruined by a rude cop. Usually, they are here visiting family or friends from out of state. They are enjoying the mustang or corvette convertible they rented and forget that Florida has traffic laws. They also don’t realize that they are in the Ticket Capitol of the south. A speeding ticket while driving down I-95 on the way to the Kravitz center can cost you hundreds of dollars. This is where most people stop thinking about the other consequences. They just pay the ticket and chalk it up to a cost on their vacation. Unfortunately, the costs can be a lot higher than just the cost of the speeding ticket.
Actual Money Costs v. Real Life Costs
If you just pay that speeding ticket, you will probably pay between $200 and $500 depending on your speed. That’s nothing to sneeze at, but it gets worse. After you pay the ticket, its not over. Next year when you get you car insurance premium, you might notice something different. You might notice that it went up 20%, 30% or even 40% for that one speeding ticket. For most people, that could mean hundreds or even thousands of dollars because of one stupid ticket.
The next gift you might be getting from that ticket is higher premiums for your life insurance. I can’t believe it either, but its true. Think about it. Insurance companies base their premiums on the risk they are incurring. Someone who gets into car accidents (their fault or not) or gets speeding tickets (warranted or not) are higher risks. That is why they feel justified in increasing your life insurance costs. The higher the risk, the higher the premium.
Lastly, the cost of your next ticket might be higher because of that ticket from Florida. Florida has reciprocity with almost every other state in the U.S. That means that if you get a ticket while vacationing in Florida, the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles is going to tell your home state about the ticket. The points will likely go on your homes state driver’s license record. Forward a few months to when you get a new speeding ticket in your home state. When you go to court for that ticket, the judge is going to take into account the fines and points you got from your Florida ticket. Invariably, he is going to hit you with bigger fines and penalties because you paid that Florida speeding ticket and got points. So you see, you were not done when you sent that check to Tallahassee. But wait ….. it gets worse.
REAL LIFE COSTS
Traffic tickets can effect your job. That’s right, even if you don’t drive for a living. Today, employers have access to a ton of information that was not available even five years ago. Not only do they Google you and look at your Facebook page, they usually run a background check on you. Depending on the type of job, it can hurt you. Obviously if its a job that requires driving such as pizza delivery, truck driver, traveling salesman, taxi driver or any other in-person kind of job, you might not get the job. Employers pay a lot of money for insurance to cover themselves if their drivers hurt someone while on the job. For instance, say you are a pharmaceutical representative who visits doctor’s offices. Part of your job requires that you drive to the doctor’s offices. Thus, your employer is required to notify his insurance carrier that you are driving so that if you run someone over on the way to that doctor’s office, your employer is covered. Each year the insurance carrier for your employer will run your driving record to see how risky you are and raise your employers premiums accordingly.
If you are applying for a job and you have points and fines on your record, they will probably go onto the next resume. And if you have a job already, don’t think your employers will keep covering the cost of your bad driving. So you see, it’s not just taxi drivers and truck drivers that have to worry about speeding tickets. Another consideration is that unpaid tickets can cost you with respect to your credit report. In some instances, unpaid tickets are turned into liens or judgements. These judgements and liens can turn up on your credit report.
Mortgage companies, banks, car loan officers and anybody else who is going to lend you money is going to look at your credit report. If you have judgments or liens, you credit score will be lower and you will pay more for that credit. In other words, it will cost you more to borrow money because you are less credit worthy due to your unpaid tickets. For all of the reasons above and more we ALWAYS tell our clients “Don’t pay that traffic ticket” and now you know why.
Jason Diamond is the Founding Partner of the Traffic Ticket Team. Jason has been practicing law in Florida for over 18 years. His Attorneys have over 50 years of combined experience and have handled over 1,000,000 traffic tickets in Florida. Jason has given legal ticket clinic seminars throughout Florida ranging from topics on “How to Beat a Florida Traffic Ticket” and “What to do When You Get Pulled Over for DUI in Florida.”
If you would like Jason to come to your place of business and do a 30 minute clinic, you can contact us 24/7 at (954) 967-9888, Jason@TrafficTicketTeam.com to arrange it.
(305) 493-7557 ~ (954) 967-9888 ~ (561) 752-9288