More About Those Tickets
There are many who complain about all the irrelevant factors insurers take into account when setting premium rates. It’s unfair for them to look at where we live. And just what do out credit scores have to do with how well we drive? They are all for the assessment of risk being personal with the lowest premiums going to the drivers who manage to act like angels, avoiding accidents and never picking up tickets. In reality, this is all a matter of pure luck. No matter how well or defensively you drive, this fails to consider the maniac behind the wheel of the other vehicle that comes plowing into you. Or the magic day you got pulled over and the officer took pity on you and waved you on with a verbal warning.
So what do you do if you pull the short straw of the day and pick up a speeding ticket? Well, the first decision is whether to fight. Sometimes, going to court to argue the merits can pay off. The officer may be ill that day and no one appears to give evidence against you. Who knows. Anything is better than picking up those points. Except. . . except there are some states where you can do something to take back time. In California, Florida, New York, Wisconsin and, now, Michigan, there are driver improvement programs.
Let’s take the new law in Michigan as our example of how these programs work. If you pick up a ticket worth four points or less, you have a choice. Go through a drive improvement course and have the points removed from the record, or accept the points and run the risk your insurer will increase your premium rates. Not exactly one of these rock-and-a-hard place decisions. If you do opt to go through the course, you have 60 days to complete it. Most of these courses last between four and eight hours so there’s not that much of a commitment in terms of time. Some are offered online rather than behind the wheel. They also tend to be priced quite reasonably. So, you complete the course with a passing grade, you pay the fine and your points are removed.
Except this is not an automatic get-out-of-jail-free card. If the ticket carries more than four points or this is your second offense within a twelve month period, there’s no escaping the points. The idea is to give you a chance to prove your intention to improve as a driver. It’s a little like an anger management course for those who get into potentially violent arguments. Take your chance to reform and you are safe.
So if you value your cheap car insurance but your luck fails and you pick up a ticket, check out your local state’s approach to removing the points from your record. If there is an improvement program, it can be worth paying the fine and the course fees to avoid the sometimes dramatic premium rate hikes. Without this rescue, cheap car insurance will be a distant memory. Be a good driver. Earn the lower premium rates.
To learn what Haz Duell has to say about other things and look on the things from his point of view, visit http://www.topinsur.net/car-insurance-and-tickets.html where he frequently writes on many different subjects that you will find fascinating.
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