Getting cited for running a red light can be an annoying and expensive experience. But one of the biggest concerns for drivers is how it will impact their auto insurance rates. Will your premiums definitely increase if you run a red light? How much will they go up? For how long?
This guide examines the relationship between red light tickets and car insurance rates. We’ll outline the typical penalties that come with running red lights and how insurers view this violation. Tips are also included for minimizing any insurance impacts.
Do Red Light Tickets Lead to Increased Insurance Rates?
In short – yes, getting caught and convicted of running a red light can raise your car insurance premiums. Here’s why:
Red light tickets are moving violations that count against your driving record. Any type of moving violation can impact insurance rates.
Running red lights is considered high-risk behavior by auto insurers. Drivers who engage in risky driving may be charged higher premiums.
The more red light tickets you accumulate, the greater your rates may increase. Multiple violations raise safety concerns.
Some insurers specifically ask about red light tickets when calculating your premium. This violation may directly factor into your quote.
So while one red light ticket isn’t guaranteed to spike your insurance costs, it certainly can. The increase you face depends on your insurer, location and driving history.
How Much Will Insurance Rates Increase After a Red Light Ticket?
It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly how much your car insurance will go up after a red light camera ticket. Average rate hikes range widely:
Most estimates are in the range of 10% to 25% per red light violation.
For drivers with otherwise clean records, 10% to 15% is common.
Repeat offenders may see increases towards the higher end of 25%.
In worst cases, some drivers reported premium hikes of 50% or more.
The exact amount will depend on variables like:
Your current insurance company and policy details
Your previous driving record
Whether it’s your first ticket or one of many
The best way to find out is to discuss it directly with your insurer or agent. They can provide specifics based on your situation. Don’t wait until renewal time to ask.
How Long Will My Insurance Stay High After a Red Light Ticket?
In most states, a red light violation will impact your insurance rates for 3 to 5 years from the date of conviction.
Tickets stay on your driving record during this timeframe. Insurers periodically review records.
If it’s your first ticket, rates may revert after 3 years of clean driving.
Multiple red light tickets may affect premiums for a full 5 years.
California and Oregon violations fall off driving records after 3 years.
Florida, Virginia and other states only count tickets for 3 years tops when setting car insurance costs.
The window can be shorter or longer depending on your insurer’s policies. Again, contact them to learn exactly how long a red light ticket conviction will influence what you pay.
Will My Insurance Go Up if I Get a Red Light Camera Ticket?
Red light camera tickets work a bit differently than citations issued by police officers. But they can still drive your insurance rates up.
In most states, automated red light tickets don’t count as moving violations or points on your license. However, they will still show up on your motor vehicle record.
When insurance companies review your driving history and see multiple red light camera violations, they may deem you high-risk and raise your premiums. In this sense, automated tickets can affect insurance costs much like standard citations.
Strategies to Prevent Insurance Increases After Running Red Lights
Here are some ways to try keeping your car insurance rates in check after receiving a red light ticket:
Fight the ticket – Contesting the violation in court gives you a shot at dismissal and preventing impacts to insurance. Consult a traffic ticket attorney.
Request traffic school – Completing defensive driving or traffic school can stop points from being added to your license, limiting insurance consequences.
Compare quotes – Shop around between insurers and find those offering the lowest rates for drivers with tickets.
Increase deductibles – Raising your deductible amount often lowers base premium costs.
Improve driving skills – Take extra care to drive safely and avoid other violations that could compound rate hikes.
The Bottom Line
It’s smart to be concerned about how running red lights affects your auto insurance premiums. Most insurers do view this violation negatively and will elevate your rates accordingly. Carefully comparing insurance options and working to keep a clean driving record can help minimize the financial fallout. Whenever possible, it’s best to avoid red light tickets altogether by driving attentively and stopping safely.
Does Running a Red Light Impact Your Car Insurance?
What happens if you run a red light in Louisiana?
How much does 1 point affect insurance in California?
Does a red light camera ticket go on your record in California?
Does red light camera ticket go on your record in Florida?