Your driving record says a lot about you, whether your driving a car, or riding a motorcycle. The record will change if you commit unlawful offenses during travel. When it comes to riding a motorcycle, it might be easier than you think to break the law. And if you do, you might face penalties. How can you recover from such actions? Are there any ways to put mistakes made behind you?
No one wants to commit a driving offense. It might lead to penalties and higher insurance rates. However, if you recommit to safety, you can often see cost improvements in due time.
How do driving records work?
It is against the law to speed, drink and drive, make illegal U-turns or commit countless other offenses. Laws might even vary by vehicle. For example, side-car rules or helmet requirements often exist for motorcyclists.
If you do break the law, your state's traffic authorities will want to track the offense. That is because, by committing offenses, you put not only yourself, but also other drivers at risk.
To track your infractions, most states maintain driving records. The record links to your drivers license. These records can accumulate a significant number of offenses over time. They even can track offenses committed outside of your home state. As they do, your risks as a safety concern might rise. Learn about 4 Summer Motorcycle Safety Tips.
Penalties of a Bad Driving Record
Every offense you commit while biking will likely go on your driving record. They might include things like:
Depending on the offense, your penalties might vary. However, the most common include:
- Running stoplights
- Reckless driving, such as speeding
- Failing to wear motorcycle protective gear
- Malfunctioning lights
- A failure to give hand signals while riding
- Causing accidents
- Driving intoxicated or under the influence
- Arrest, detention or jail time
- Probation or community service requirements
- Suspension of your license
- Revocation of the license indefinitely
- Requirements to attend traffic school
- Restitution to anyone to whom you caused harm.
- Increases in your motorcycle insurance premium, or cancellation of the policy.
It is the increase to your motorcycle insurance premium that might occur most often. Your insurer will regularly review your record, and if they see new offenses, they won't like it. Because of your offense, they will likely classify you as a higher cost risk. Therefore, you might have to pay more.
Generally, the more offenses you rack up on the record, the more penalties that might result. Also, if you commit a particularly serious offense, it will likely carry more weight on the record. Your record might eventually accumulate so many infractions that the authorities might have no choice but to suspend your driving privileges. You don't want to face any such penalties.
Don't stress yet. There are ways to improve your driving record. However, you have to commit to safety from here on out.
Improving Your Driving Record
The good things about driving records is that they are fluid items. Most states allow charges to fall off records over time. Small offenses, like tickets, are those most likely to disappear. They often drop after about 3 years. However, the most-serious offenses, like DUIs, might remain on your record longer, such as up to 10 years. Some might even remain indefinitely.
Nevertheless, any offense off your record might prove a benefit to your risk profile. It might eventually lead insurers to draw back your insurance premiums. So, over time, you might be able to save on your policy, rather than paying exorbitant premiums.
Still, the record remains fluid. That means a new offense could appear on your driving record as quickly as an old one disappears. So, you must do everything you can to prevent new infractions. Start some of the following practices today. You can worry less about facing a costly addition to your driving record.
One perk for traffic offenders is they often have the right to appeal charges to the courts. So, if you receive a charge that you believe is inaccurate, you might be able to have it expunged from your record. Keep in mind, however, that this might require a lengthy legal process. Motorcycle insurance likely won't help you pay such legal costs because they do not relate to liability suits.
- Always maintain motorcycle insurance that meets your state's minimum policy requirements.
- Keep your registration, license and certifications active and valid.
- Do not speed, run stop signals or weave in and out of traffic. These are some of the most-common offenses drivers commit.
- Do not perform any risky maneuvers or bike tricks while on public roads.
- Give hand signals to notify other drivers of your intentions. Many states require bikers to signal turns, stops and other maneuvers.
- Always wear protective gear, even if you don't have a legal requirement to do so. The most important are usually your helmet, pads and eyewear.
- If the police stop you, follow their directions and work with them to understand next steps. Don't try to flee police.
Call Peachstate Insurance at (877) 997-2478 for more information on Atlanta motorcycle insurance.