How a speeding ticket impacts your insurance in North Carolina

1
carlosalvarez/Getty Images
Bankrate Logo

Why you can trust Bankrate

While we adhere to strict , this post may contain references to products from our partners. Here's an explanation for . This content is powered by HomeInsurance.com (NPN: 8781838). For more information, please see our

A speeding ticket in North Carolina could have lasting financial and life consequences. Besides the fine itself, a North Carolina speeding ticket increased the cost of car insurance by 55% on average, according to Bankrate’s 2021 study of quoted annual premiums. Courts in North Carolina report citations and convictions to the DMV. Your insurance company will eventually find out you were cited for driving over the posted limit. That is why avoiding tickets in the first place is essential. But if a speeding ticket has impacted the cost of your insurance in North Carolina, there are ways you can save on car insurance premiums.

How much is a speeding ticket in North Carolina?

The speed-related cost of a speeding ticket in North Carolina is relatively inexpensive in perspective; it is the court and administrative fees that add up, in addition to the ongoing impact to your insurance rates. The speeding ticket cost North Carolina is at least $188 for the court costs alone, plus the rate associated with the speeding excess itself. Here is how the overall fine is determined:

  • Driving 0 to 5 miles per hour (mph) over the speed limit: $10, plus costs
  • Driving 6 to 10 mph over the speed limit: $15, plus costs
  • Driving 11 to 15 mph over the speed limit: $30, plus costs
  • Driving 16 mph over the speed limit or higher: $50, plus costs
  • Speeding in a school or work zone: $250, plus costs

Besides the financial impact, repeat offenders may face having their licenses suspended after too many points. The fee to have a driver’s license restored after too many speeding tickets is $70 for the restoration and an additional $50 service fee.

How much does a speeding ticket increase your car insurance in North Carolina?

Bankrate’s findings on how much your insurance goes up after a speeding ticket is designated by driver age and sex. You will find that the base rate for a motorist is typically different based on the sex of the driver. A state’s statistics for male and female motorists usually shows that one gender is safer — or involved in more accidents — than the other sex. While women are known to be less risky drivers in general, North Carolina insurance rates show that females pay more for vehicle coverage than men, even with a clean record.

Average annual full coverage premium

Age Rate before speeding ticket Rate after speeding ticket % increase
40-year-old male $1,284 $2,049 60%
40-year-old female $1,367 $2,058 51%
Total average $1,325 $2,054 55%

The most important takeaway from Bankrate’s data is that a single speeding ticket can cause your premiums to significantly increase. Speeding is an expensive and risky habit in the long run, with possible ongoing financial impacts.

How to lower your car insurance after a speeding ticket in North Carolina

For North Carolina drivers with a speeding ticket impacting rates, it may help to know you can still find ways to save on car insurance. Consider the following ideas:

Get quotes from other car insurance companies

There is no standard rate increase based on the type of ticket you get. Two similar drivers insured by different insurance companies could see a big difference in their premiums affected by a speeding ticket. Some car insurance companies in North Carolina seem to be more lenient about a speeding ticket compared to others, as indicated in the chart below.

Average annual full coverage premium by car insurance company in North Carolina

Car insurance company Rate before speeding ticket Rate after speeding ticket
Allstate $1,633 $2,384
AmTrust Financial $1,372 $1,842
Erie $1,125 $1,619
Geico $835 $1,939
MetLife $1,524 $2,034
Nationwide $1,374 $2,010
North Carolina Farm Bureau $1,107 $1,595
Penn National $1,333 $1,993
Progressive $1,630 $2,392
State Farm $958 $1,409

*Premiums are average annual full coverage premiums for 40-year-olds

As you can see, the same level of coverage could cost you almost double based on the carrier you choose. That is why the first step drivers might want to take after finding out premiums may increase after a citation is to get multiple car insurance quotes to consider if switching insurers would provide significant savings. However, since price is not the only consideration, review customer ratings and independent reviews about the carrier to make sure you are making an informed decision.

Adjust your coverage

If the new insurance rate is more than you can afford, you might also consider adjusting your vehicle insurance by lowering your coverage limits (within legal requirements). Alternatively, you can also raise your deductible to save, so long as you are prepared to assume more financial responsibility in the event of an accident. Keep in mind that safe driving is more important than ever if you adjust your coverage or deductible — an accident could cost you much more in this situation.

Attend a driver improvement course

North Carolina state laws allow drivers with four points or more to attend a driver improvement course once every five years. You may need to qualify first and attend a hearing with an administrative hearings officer, and a $70 course fee will be required. Once you complete the course, you will receive a credit of three points. Over time, these improvements to your driving record may result in lower premiums from your insurer upon policy renewal.

Other speeding ticket considerations

In some situations, a North Carolina speeding ticket may be waivable — meaning you may not have to appear in court and can simply pay it online. However, accepting the right to waive and pay it in full without a hearing means you agree you are guilty.

Minor speeding citations are typically waivable. To know if you have to appear in court, or if you can pay the ticket in full without a court visit, check the officer’s notes on the citation. Law enforcement typically indicates whether the offense is waivable.

Frequently asked questions

What is the best car insurance company for drivers with speeding tickets?

Most of the best car insurance companies raise premiums significantly after a speeding ticket in North Carolina. The lowest premiums after a citation, based on Bankrate’s review of quoted annual quoted premiums can be found from Amtrust Financial and Metlife. However, you can expect rates to vary for your situation and unique circumstances.

How can I get North Carolina drivers license points removed?

The state allows drivers with four points or more to attend a driver improvement course once every five years. You may need to qualify first and attend a hearing with an administrative hearings officer. Once you complete the course, you will receive a credit of three points.

How much does a North Carolina speeding ticket cost?

A speeding ticket in North Carolina costs at least $188 in court/administrative fees, plus the fine for the speed overage. Driving 0 to 5 mph over the limit costs $10, while 16 miles or more will reflect a $50 charge. The fine for speeding in a school or work zone is $250, plus costs, regardless of the speed over the limit.

Methodology

Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2021 rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quoted rates are based on 18-year-old and 40-year-old male and female drivers with a clean driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:

  • $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
  • $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
  • $50,000 property damage liability per accident
  • $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
  • $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
  • $500 collision deductible
  • $500 comprehensive deductible

To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverages that meet each state’s requirements. Our base profile drivers own a 2019 Toyota Camry, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.

Incident: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the following incidents applied: clean record (base), at-fault accident, single speeding ticket, single DUI conviction and lapse in coverage.

These are sample rates and should only be used for comparative purposes.

Age: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the ages 18-60 (base: 40 years) applied.

Gender: the following states do not use gender as a determining factor in calculating premiums: California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, North Carolina, Pennsylvania.

Written by
Cynthia Paez Bowman
Personal Finance Contributor
Cynthia Paez Bowman is a finance and business journalist who has been featured in Bankrate, Business Jet Traveler, MSN, CheatSheet.com, Freshome.com and TheSimpleDollar.com. She regularly travels to Africa and the Middle East to consult with women’s NGOs about small business development and works with select startups and women-owned businesses to provide growth and visibility.
Edited by
Insurance Editor