A fun family outing can turn to a headache quickly if you are pulled over for a speeding ticket. It is an added expense you probably did not budget for when planning your road trip.
For those who are unfamiliar with North Carolina traffic laws, the first question that likely comes to mind is “How much is this going to cost me?” The answer is not a simple price tag – speeding tickets can lead to long-term consequences.
Ticket fines and costs
North Carolina has set fine amounts for moving violations, which are generally low. The most expensive violation is for speeding through a school zone or on school property, which amounts to $250. All other fines are usually $50 or less. This makes it seem like it is less expensive – both in terms of money and time – to just pay the ticket.
However, paying a speeding ticket is an admission of guilt. In North Carolina, moving violations are subject to a “point system.” These points are added to your driving record and can cause your insurance rates to jump – potentially as high as 40 percent for three years. Those points can also accumulate and make it difficult for you to be employable in an industry that requires driving for your job.
Sometimes speeding tickets are also charged as reckless driving, which can remain on a criminal record forever. Whether or not a reckless driving charge will be added to the ticket is at the officer’s discretion.
Fighting a ticket
While moving violations do not mandate a court appearance, you may challenge a citation in court if you so choose. An attorney with experience in speeding ticket defense can represent you in this matter and fight the charges so that the offense does not potentially cause an overwhelming financial burden in the long term.