One of the main reasons people opt for traffic school is to mask their moving traffic violations. By hiding their traffic violation, the driver can prevent the point from showing up on his or her driving record. Keep in mind that completing traffic school masks your point from showing up on your public driving record. However, the DMV still tracks the original citation (one reason is to monitor your traffic school eligibility).
If the point does show up on your driving record, it likely because you were not eligible for traffic school or you didn’t complete traffic school, then it’s highly probable that your car insurance rates will go up. Usually, you should always opt for and finish traffic school when given the opportunity.
Sometimes, people report that their auto insurance rates went up even after completing traffic school. This insurance hike could happen for several reasons:
A DMV or Court Error
If your car insurance premium still went up after completing traffic school, it might be due to a mistake by the court, DMV, or the traffic school. An error is unlikely, but you can check the following steps to confirm.
The best way to resolve this is first to check your traffic school completion certificate against the citation/traffic ticket. If you spot an error, inform the traffic school immediately, and they should be able to resubmit the right information.
Traffic School Submission
If your information checks out, then contact the court to check if the traffic school successfully submitted the completion to the DMV. Some courts can take a very long time to process completions – ranging from weeks to months. This could be a reason why your case is not closed.
However, if submitted correctly, the court will use your course completion date as the processing date, and not the actual date they process your completion. There is no way for a third party to expedite court processing procedures. Make sure you register with a company on the DMV traffic school list.
Your Driving Record
Your insurer checks your driving record by running a Motor Vehicle Report (MVR) when providing a new quote or renewing your policy. You should order a copy of your MVR (commonly referred to as your driving record) for your own records. You can order a copy of your MVR online from the California DMV for $2. If you find an error, you can request a correction by submitting DL 207 to the DMV. See our blog post on how to check your driving record yourself for a step-by-step guide.
There are rare cases where your case is closed by the court, but the point still shows up in your driving record. This is likely due to a miscommunication between the court and DMV, which resulted in your result not being correctly transmitted. In such a case, contact the court and explain the situation, and they will help you reach the DMV and remove the point from your record.
After you fix the error on your driving record, you can ask your insurance company to rerun the quote, and that should give you a more “normal” insurance quote.
Other Factors for Car Insurance Increase
The other most likely reason for your car insurance rates going up is other factors like changes to your policy, driving more than you initially claimed, or claims against your policy. The best way to find out if this is the case is to call your auto insurance provider and ask why your rates have changed.
Keep in mind that if you do get the point on your record and you do not go to traffic school, depending on the violation, you may have to pay an auto insurance surcharge, and you may lose your California Good Driver Discount. Traffic points can stay on your record for many years.
Losing your Good Driver Discount could hike your rates up to 35%! Your first point may not impact your premiums a lot, but if you get the second point, then you’re going to end up paying a lot. It’s best to keep the points off your record as much as possible and learn how to avoid getting a traffic ticket.