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How Much Does a Red Light Ticket Affect Insurance?

If you’ve received a red light ticket, you may be wondering how it affects your insurance. While it can seem like a minor traffic violation, red light tickets can have a significant impact on your insurance rates. In this post, we’ll explore the various factors that can affect your insurance rates after receiving a red light ticket.

Factors That Affect Insurance Rates

Before we dive into the specifics of how red light tickets can affect your insurance, it’s essential to understand how insurance rates are calculated. Insurance companies use a variety of factors to determine your rates, including:

Driving Record

Your driving record is one of the most critical factors that insurance companies consider when determining your rates. If you have a history of traffic violations, your rates will likely be higher than someone who has a clean driving record.

Age and Gender

Young drivers and male drivers are statistically more likely to get into accidents, so they typically have higher insurance rates.

Type of Vehicle

The type of vehicle you drive can also affect your insurance rates. Expensive or high-performance cars typically cost more to insure than basic, economy cars.


Your location can impact your insurance rates as well. If you live in an area with a high number of accidents or thefts, your rates may be higher than someone who lives in a safer area.

How Red Light Tickets Affect Insurance Rates

Now that we understand the factors that insurance companies use to determine rates let’s explore how red light tickets specifically can affect your rates.

Points on Your Driving Record

When you receive a red light ticket, points will be added to your driving record. The number of points you receive will vary depending on the severity of the violation and the state in which you received the ticket. In most cases, a red light ticket will result in two to three points on your record.These points can stay on your record for several years, and insurance companies will consider them when determining your rates. The more points you have on your record, the higher your rates are likely to be.

Increased Risk

Red light tickets also indicate to insurance companies that you are a higher risk driver. Running a red light is a dangerous behavior that can result in accidents or injuries to yourself and others on the road. Insurance companies view drivers who engage in risky behaviors as more likely to get into accidents in the future, which means higher rates for you.

Cost of the Ticket

While not directly related to insurance rates, the cost of the red light ticket can impact your finances. In addition to paying the fine, you may also be required to take a defensive driving course or attend traffic school. These additional costs can add up, putting a strain on your budget.

What You Can Do to Minimize the Impact of a Red Light Ticket

Fortunately, there are steps you can take to minimize the impact of a red light ticket on your insurance rates.

Pay the Ticket

The first step is to pay the ticket as soon as possible. If you fail to pay the ticket, you could face additional fines or even have your driver’s license suspended.

Consider Hiring a Lawyer

If you believe you were unfairly ticketed, you may want to consider hiring a lawyer to fight the ticket. While legal fees can be expensive, if the lawyer is successful in getting the ticket dismissed, it can save you money in the long run by avoiding higher insurance rates.

Take a Defensive Driving Course

Depending on the state in which you received the ticket, you may be able to take a defensive driving course or attend traffic school to remove the points from your record. These courses can take time and effort, but they can be well worth it in the long run by keeping your insurance rates low.


In conclusion, receiving a red light ticket can have a significant impact on your insurance rates. Points on your driving record, increased risk, and the cost of the ticket can all contribute to higher rates. However, by taking proactive steps like paying the ticket, hiring a lawyer, or taking a defensive driving course, you can minimize the impact and keep your rates as low as possible. Remember to always obey traffic laws and drive safely to avoid future violations and higher insurance rates.