Michigan Speeding & Traffic Tickets
Were you issued a traffic ticket?
Need to know how much the fines are and what penalties you could face?
Want to know how you can reduce those fines and penalties?
We’ve outlined the key Michigan moving violation information you need to know to minimize the impact of a traffic ticket.
Traffic Violation Fines – What Will You Pay?
Traffic violation fines can get confusing in Michigan because the fines aren’t the same across the state. The fine you pay for a traffic ticket will be determined by the district where you committed the moving violation.
While the fines may vary, below is a standard list of fines you might face if you’re pulled over:
- Speeding 1-5 MPH over limit: $115+ / 2 Points
- Speeding 26+ MPH over limit: $210 / 4 Points
- Failure to signal: $105-$125 / 2 Points
- Failure to stop for school bus: $265 / 3 Points
- Improper U-turn: $105+ / 2 Points
On top of the fine for the actual moving violation, traffic tickets can also be assessed additional fees and surcharges. These fines are a source of state income and are applied to regional or state-funded projects.
Typically, the fine amount you must pay is listed on the ticket you received. If you have misplaced your ticket or you have other questions about Michigan traffic ticket fines, you should contact your district court immediately. You don’t want to miss a deadline, as that could lead to additional fines and penalties.
License Suspensions and Restrictions – Could You Lose Your Drivers License for a Moving Violation?
A lot of people are immediately worried that getting a moving violation could affect their ability to drive. Your driving privileges can be restricted, suspended, or revoked by the Michigan Secretary of State. There are two ways to lose your driving privileges:
- Accumulating too many traffic ticket points.
- Committing a serious crime.
Below are a few of the serious violations that could cause your license to be suspended or revoked:
- Drunk driving
- Evading an officer
- Driving without insurance
If your license is suspended, you will have a start and end date for the suspension. During this period you won’t be able to drive, or driving may be heavily restricted. However, if your license was revoked there’s no way to legally operate a vehicle. You’ll have the opportunity to reapply for a drivers license after one year. If it’s revoked again, you’ll have to wait five years to reapply!
Traffic Ticket Points
How Many Points Will Go on Your Driving Record?
The Michigan points system is designed to identify poor driving habits. Points are assigned to every traffic violation, and the number of points on your driving record goes up as the severity of the infraction increases. For example, if you get a speeding ticket for driving 6-10 MPH over the limit, it’s a 2-point violation, while speeding 16+ MPH over the limit holds a 4-point value.
Driving Restrictions Due to Points
If you receive a certain number of points within a period of time that’s when your license could be suspended or restrictions could be put in place. Drivers that accumulate 12 points or receive six or more 1-point traffic tickets in two years time will be required to retake the Michigan driving exam to keep a valid license. Also, when you reach 12 points, your license could be suspended.
Higher Auto Insurance Costs Because of Points
Your driving record is an easy way for an auto insurance company to assess your driving abilities and decide what premium you pay for coverage. If you start accumulating traffic ticket after traffic ticket, and the associated points are added to your driving record, your auto insurance rates are sure to go up.
In extreme cases, an insurance provider might drop you from their coverage if they see you as a high risk to insure. Auto insurance is a legal requirement in Michigan, so keeping points off your driving record is a must if you want to legally drive.
Once you’re convicted of a moving violation, those points will remain on your driving record for two years from the date of the conviction. Fortunately, points from certain Michigan moving violations can be removed from your driving record.
Why a Michigan Basic Driver Improvement Course is a Must After a Moving Violation
If you received a traffic ticket you have options for undoing some of the damage. Many people will be eligible to take a Michigan Basic Driver Improvement Course (BDIC). Drivers are allowed to take this course if they have no more than two points on their license and the moving violation was three or fewer points.
In addition to brushing up on driving best practices, there are a some big benefits to taking a BDIC course:
- Get your traffic ticket dismissed
- Lower points on your license
- Lower your auto insurance rates
Get Your Traffic Ticket Dismissed
Best case scenario, taking the Michigan Basic Driver Improvement Course will get your traffic ticket dismissed so it doesn’t show up at all on your driving record. This is possible in some courts, however the requirements for dismissal vary from court to court. Typically, to have a traffic ticket dismissed you must:
- Only have one current violation.
- The moving violation couldn’t have occurred while driving a commercial vehicle.
- The ticket wasn’t for a serious moving violation.
- You take the Michigan BDIC and submit the certificate of completion to the court handling the violation.
Lower Points on Your Driving Record
The points on your driving record could be worse than the fine since they’ll be a factor for two years. But you can keep points from being added to your driving record by successfully completing a Michigan Basic Driver Improvement Course. After you pass, the Michigan Department of State will be notified so that the points don’t get added to your driving record.
Keep Your Auto Insurance Rates From Increasing (or Get a Discount)
Keeping points off your driving record means that your insurance rates shouldn’t go up after a traffic ticket. After successfully passing the Basic Driver Improvement Course the Department of State will also keep the traffic violation details hidden from insurance companies. That means even if it was a 0-point traffic violation, you’ll want to take the BDIC so that your insurance company won’t see it and possibly increase your rates.
If you didn’t get a traffic ticket you can still benefit from voluntarily taking a Basic Driver Improvement Course. Drivers with a clean record that complete the course could be eligible for a 10% discount on their auto insurance!
Drop the Points and Keep Your License
With I Drive Safely’s online Michigan Basic Driver Improvement Course you don’t even have to leave home to get your traffic ticket dismissed and avoid putting points on your driving record.