The long arm of the law is everywhere. The cops are waiting, watching, hoping they’ll catch you going over the posted speed limit, thenwham! They slap you with a ticket and $450 fine. What else are they gonna do, solve crimes?
We kid, we kid, but speeding tickets are no joke. They not only involve forking over your hard-earned cash to mismanaged state and federal governments, they also stay with your driving record and can affect future interactions with the cops. At least for a while.
How long tickets stay on your record varies from state to state, so Car Bibles’ fast-footed editors put together this guide on how long speeding tickets stay on your record, along with a host of other insights into ticketing and moving violations you may encounter. Let’s get into it.
What’s a Speeding Ticket?
Come on, we all know you know what a speeding ticket is. Which one of us hasn’t been busted by the fuzz, 5-0, pigs, and rozzers?
But if you’re genuinely asking, a speeding ticket is a type of reprimand handed down by the cops when they catch you going faster than the posted speed limit.
How Does a Speeding Ticket Work?
Well, you broke the law. You normally will pay a fine, get a demerit on your license, and possibly have to do some type of online or in-person driver education training to teach you it’s not cool to speed.
How Long Does a Speeding Ticket Stay on Your Record?
Unfortunately, there’s no one answer, as each state has a different system. Here’s a breakdown of those states and how long a speeding ticket stays on your record according to EverQuote, a car insurance company.
|Alabama||After 2 years it no longer affects license suspension but will stay on your record.|
|Illinois||4 to 5 years|
|Kentucky||5 years on the driving record, but points assessed are removed after 2 years|
|Maryland||Points can affect your license for 2 years but the ticket is a public record for 3 years|
|Michigan||Tickets stay on your record for 7 years and points stay on for 2 years|
|Minnesota||5 years but serious speeding violations can stay on your record for 10 years|
|Missouri||3 years, or 5 years if the ticket led to license suspension or revocation|
|Nevada||12 months for demerit points, but convictions stay on your permanent record|
|New Hampshire||3 years|
|New Jersey||5 years|
|New Mexico||1 year|
|New York||18 months|
|North Carolina||3 years|
|North Dakota||3 years|
|Rhode Island||3 years|
|South Carolina||24 months|
|South Dakota||24 months|
|West Virginia||5 years|
What’s the Difference Between a Ticket for Speeding and Reckless Endangerment?
Cops won’t place cuffs on your wrists, throw you in the back of a squad car, or tow your car for petty low-end speeding. They might if they catch you speeding so fast that it’s considered reckless endangerment.
The legal definition of reckless endangerment is, “a crime consisting of acts that create a substantial risk of serious physical injury to another person. The accused person isn’t required to intend the resulting or potential harm, but must have acted in a way that showed a disregard for the foreseeable consequences of the actions.”
If you’re caught going well over the legal speed limit, we’re talking about 20-plus mph over, you’re likely to be charged with reckless endangerment, along with speeding. It will most definitely be far more expensive than your simple speeding ticket, and the courts might get involved.
The Car Bibles Glossary of Speeding Ticket Terms
Welcome to Bible School!
A reprimand that carries a fine due to a legal violation. These are issued to drivers by the police.
A ticket involving a moving vehicle.
According to NHTSA, Distracted Driving is “any activity that diverts attention from driving, including talking or texting on your phone, eating and drinking, talking to people in your vehicle, fiddling with the stereo, entertainment or navigation system—anything that takes your attention away from the task of safe driving.”
Leaving the Scene of an Accident
Leaving the scene of an accident is a type of legal violation that occurs when, you guessed it, you leave the scene of an accident before you call for the police, fire, or ambulance services, or exchange insurance information with the other party involved in an accident. Basically, you are refusing responsibility for your part in the accident.
Unlawful Vehicle Modifications
Car Bibles’ favorite legal issue, unlawful vehicle modification, will get slapped on you when you violate the country’s or state’s vehicle code. This might be neon underglow, loud exhausts, or some type of window tinting issue, among others.
The Car Bibles Questionnaire
Car Bibles answers all your burning questions!
Q: Do Speeding Tickets Look Bad on Your Record?
A: They definitely don’t make your driving record look good, but they will go away after a period of time or if you get your record expunged.
Q: Do Cops Show Up To Court For Speeding Tickets?
A: They definitely do. Showing up for court counts as overtime. Wouldn’t you want more money, too?
Q: How Much Does Your Insurance Go Up After a Speeding Ticket?
A: NerdWallet states that the average increase to insurance after a speeding ticket is about 25 percent, which is a bunch of money.
Video on Speeding Tickets
Car Bibles’ editors understand that not everyone is a text-based learner. For those kinesthetic people out there, we have your back with a video showing you exactly how speeding tickets work. We pulled it from one of our favorite, and most trusted, sources and it’s a great additional resource.
Car Bible’s Favorite Ticket Related Products
You can’t really buy tools for getting your driving record expunged. Amazon doesn’t offer lawyer services on demand. Yet. What you can do is reduce your chances of talking with Johnny Law by using one of these radar detectors.
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