We handle a lot of speeding tickets for our clients in Wake County and Chatham county. The main goal for most clients is a reduction of their speeding ticket so their car insurance won't go up.
The general rule is that everyone is allowed one speeding ticket every three years under 10 miles an hour over the limit without getting any N.C. Department of Insurance SDIP points (otherwise known as insurance points). But what we see more and more with the insurance companies is that they are getting around the law in North Carolina with a "safe driver discount." So one is penalized with higher vehicle insurance for any sort of speeding ticket (even as low as five miles per hour over the limit) because it violates the "safe driver discount."
So our advice for most clients (assuming eligibility) is to try to get their speeding tickets reduced to the non-moving violation of improper equipment. A reduction to improper equipment is the best way to go because it avoids the issue of the safe driver discount that a reduction to nine miles an hour over the limit will include.
I've attached a letter below from my own family insurance policy. Someone on my insurance policy (not me) had a speeding ticket of nine miles an hour over the limit just about three years ago. At that time Wake County wasn't allowing reductions to improper equipment. Because of that ticket my insurance quote went up $110 for the six month insurance premium. The only ticket on our policy was that one speeding ticket (hint, hint it was my wife) for speeding nine miles over the limit. We should not have received any SDIP points but the insurance company still raised the rate because they said it violated their "safe driver discount." So in our case that one speeding ticket cost us about $660 in extra car insurance over three years.
So in this example a reduction of a speeding ticket from 15 mph over the limit down to 9 miles an hour over the limit cost an extra $660 over three years. Had we been able to get that ticket reduced to improper equipment we would have save a lot of money in higher insurance premiums because of the safe driver discount. A reduction to improper equipment in Wake County would have saved us a lot of money if we had been able to get that close to three years ago. Unfortunately the Wake District Attorney's Office had a new policy that went into effect in 2015 and it was not available in 2014. Most of the other counties in North Carolina generally allow for reductions to improper equipment if the ticket and driving record meets certain county by county rules for eligibility. The change in policy by then newly elected Wake County DA Lorrin Freeman has undoubtedly had the effect of saving Wake County residents from much higher car insurance premiums. Our clients have certainly been able to benefit from lower insurance because of the new Wake County improper equipment policy. The result is more money in the pockets of minor speeders and less money in the pockets of the big insurance companies. The improper equipment reductions come with higher court costs/fines so the State of North Carolina also benefits with more revenue in the General Fund.
The main take away is that if you are eligible for a reduction to improper equipment it's always the safer move versus a reduction to nine miles over the limit because your insurance company may have a safe driver discount that will penalize you even though you don't get any NC Department of Insurance SDIP points with a reduction in speed.
If you have received a speeding ticket in Wake County or Chatham County contact The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel, PLLC for a free consultation at 919-585-1486.