Getting a speeding ticket fixed acts something like insurance against future trouble. One citation, by itself, for a driver with a good record doesn't cause much damage. The problem is that you never know what will happen next, and traffic issues have a way of snowballing.
The number one reason to get a speeding ticket fixed is to keep the points off your driving record. In Missouri, if you accumulate 8 or more points over 18 months, your license will be suspended for 30 days (or longer if you have been previously suspended). A speeding ticket will be 2 or 3 points, depending on who wrote it and what court is handling it. Additionally, an officer can write a ticket for any other infraction they observed, such as improper turn signal or following too closely, and these are usually worth 2 points. So, it is not unusual to get 5 points on a traffic stop.
An unfixed traffic ticket, therefore, puts you in a position where your next traffic stop could result in a license suspension. Of course, it is possible to have the second ticket fixed. The problem is, some prosecutors will check a driver's record before they will agree to amend a ticket. If the history is bad enough, they will not amend it. It is possible to withdraw a guilty plea for the previous ticket, but this is difficult and costly.
A license suspension is something that most people cannot afford. I see a lot of cases where someone got a 30-day point suspension, was not in a position to stop driving, and ended up with a driving while suspended charge. That is a 12-point charge which will result in a 1-year driving revocation. Now the snowball is gaining momentum. Subsequent driving while revoked charges are class A misdemeanors in addition to the points and other revocations. At this point, you would be looking at thousands of dollars of fines and legal fees to get your record right again.
Will a Ticket Raise My Insurance Rates?
Yes. Don't just take my word for it; let's see what the experts have to say. According to Allstate:
“If you get pulled over for driving too fast, you may wonder whether speeding tickets affect your insurance. The answer is likely yes, speeding tickets may increase the amount you pay for car insurance. Speeding tickets are considered part of your driving record. Insurance companies can check your driving record, and they may use the information to help determine your risk of having an accident or making an insurance claim. The perception that you're at higher risk of an accident because of traffic violations on your driving record may affect the cost of your insurance.”
Additionally, the experts at Allstate say that getting a speeding ticket could potentially put a driver into a high-risk group that could not only cause an increase in rates but also leads to a loss of coverage. This is more likely with one of the higher quality insurance companies. If you lose this coverage, you will be forced to get it from lower-tier insurers. This insurance is likely to be more expensive and provide fewer benefits.
Carinsurance.com has an excellent breakdown of how much your rates will go up if you get a speeding ticket. According to their analysis, your rates will go up 22% to 30%, on average, after a speeding ticket. If you get two over three years, you can expect them to go up 43%. Their analysis was based on a 40-year old driver. The increases might be more for younger drivers.
Can Speeding Tickets Affect My Job?
More and more people are working jobs that involve driving, and speeding tickets can affect these jobs. The ramifications can vary widely from job to job. If you drive a company vehicle, the employer is probably paying an expensive insurance premium and will have to pay more for employees with speeding tickets. They will probably run your driving record regularly and have policies against an accumulation of driving infractions.
Workers in the gig economy who drive for a living need to avoid speeding tickets. It is hard to get a precise answer on how companies like Uber, Lyft, Grubhub, and DoorDash address this issue, but the consensus is that there seems to be a three-strike rule, usually over 2 or 3 years. This website has aggregated the requirements for a bunch of different companies. Unfortunately, accidents that are not your fault can count against you. There are numerous anecdotes on message boards of drivers being fired or canceled by gig companies after being rear-ended. The best bet is to keep your record clean.
Even if you don't drive for a living, it is probably a good idea to keep speeding tickets off your record, especially if they are high-speed. It appears that more employers are running more detailed background checks. Frankly, some of the lengths employers are going through to screen their employees strike me as a little ridiculous, but I have been hearing a lot of concern from people in fields like nursing and education that a bad driving record can affect their job.
What Can I Do to Keep a Speeding Ticket Off My Record?
All you have to do is call Attorney Ruth Beerup at 636-940-1111. She will just need a little information from you about your ticket, payment to hire her, and she will be able to notify the court that she is representing you. She will then negotiate with the prosecutor to keep the ticket off your record. She will ask the prosecutor to amend it to a non-moving violation like parking or defective equipment. These kinds of violations do not show up on a driving record and do not cause points on your license.
After the prosecutor agrees to an amendment, there will be a fine from the court. Ruth will send a letter explaining how to pay the fine. You will not have to worry about points on your record or an employer seeing it. In Missouri, getting an attorney like Ruth Beerup to fix your ticket is the simplest way to protect your driving record and avoid the worst consequences of a speeding violation.