14 Jun How Does a Reckless Driving Violation Effect Insurance Premiums in Oklahoma?
Reckless driving is not just a serious traffic offense, it can also have long-lasting implications on your financial well-being. In the state of Oklahoma, like many other states, being convicted of reckless driving can lead to significant increases in your car insurance premiums. Insurance companies view reckless driving as an indication of high-risk behavior, and that perception translates into steeper insurance costs. In this blog post, we’re going to delve into the specific consequences of a reckless driving offense in Oklahoma, focusing on how such an offense can impact your insurance rates, and what you might expect if you find yourself in this unfortunate situation.
What is the Punishment for a Reckless Driving Citation in Oklahoma?
As of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, reckless driving in Oklahoma is a misdemeanor offense, and it carries significant penalties. The Oklahoma Statutes Title 47 O.S. §11-90(A) defines reckless driving as operating a vehicle in a “careless or wanton manner without regard for the safety of persons or property.”
If found guilty, the convicted person may face:
- For the first offense, a fine between $100 to $500, imprisonment between 5 to 90 days, or both.
- For subsequent offenses, a fine between $150 to $1,000, imprisonment between 10 days to 6 months, or both.
In addition, your driver’s license may be suspended or revoked, and you may face higher insurance premiums. It’s also worth noting that Oklahoma employs a point system for traffic violations, and reckless driving may add 4 points to your driving record. If a driver accumulates too many points, they may face additional penalties, including a license suspension.
How Can You Prevent Rising Insurance Premiums After Receiving a Reckless Driving Citation?
Seeing your insurance premiums spike after a reckless driving citation is certainly a daunting prospect. While there is no surefire way to prevent an increase entirely, there are strategies you can implement to mitigate the effect or even potentially decrease your insurance premiums in the long run.
- Shop Around: Insurance companies assess risk differently, so it might be worth shopping around for a new policy. Some companies specialize in insuring high-risk drivers and might offer more competitive rates.
- Policy Discounts: Check if your insurer offers any discounts that you aren’t currently utilizing. These could be for anything from installing anti-theft devices to being a good student.
- • Increase Deductible: If feasible, consider increasing your deductible. The higher the deductible, the lower the premium. However, make sure you would be able to cover the deductible in the event of an accident.
- Maintain a Clean Record: Over time, the impact of a single reckless driving citation will diminish, especially if you avoid further citations. Staying citation-free will eventually help lower your premiums.
- Legal Assistance: In some cases, it might be beneficial to hire a traffic attorney to help reduce the charge or have it dismissed altogether, which can prevent the citation from affecting your insurance rates.
- Bundle Policies: If you have multiple insurance policies (like home and auto), consider bundling them with the same company. Many insurers offer discounts for having multiple policies.
Always remember that reckless driving is a serious offense and the best way to avoid increased premiums is to avoid reckless driving altogether. Follow traffic laws, drive responsibly, and ensure your driving habits align with safe practices.
Hiring an Attorney
In conclusion, the aftermath of a reckless driving citation can be daunting, particularly when facing potentially skyrocketing insurance premiums. While it’s possible to navigate the situation on your own, the advice and guidance of a skilled lawyer can be invaluable. An experienced traffic attorney can evaluate the specific details of your case, provide personalized advice, and even challenge the citation in court, if applicable. They can also navigate the complex legal landscape and negotiate on your behalf, possibly reducing the charge or having it dismissed altogether. It’s an investment not just in your financial well-being, but also in your peace of mind. Remember, when it comes to legal maters, it pays to have a professional in your corner advocating for your best interests.
Contact OK Traffic Ticket Defense today at (918) 947-9225, to obtain a free consultation on your ticket!