As someone with a commercial driver’s license (CDL), you have to show better driving skills and a cleaner driving record than the average person to maintain your license. You will also pay substantially more per month for insurance as someone who is an owner-operator of a commercial truck rather than someone with a personal vehicle.
The average cost per month per vehicle for a commercial policy can range from $750 to over $1,200. Often, blemishes on a driver’s record will push them closer to the higher end of that spectrum. The more risk a driver presents for a crash, the more the company will charge to insure their vehicle. As an owner-operator, you will be the one who has to account for those extra costs each month.
Those insurance premium increases can be a very good reason to fight against a traffic ticket. Even a ticket in your own vehicle will affect your insurance rates. For many professionals, what they do on their own time doesn’t much affect their professional life. For a commercial driver, mistakes made in their own vehicle can affect eligibility for a commercial license and also how much they pay for insurance.
Serious citations can put your profession at risk
Even a simple speeding ticket adds hundreds of dollars a month to what you pay for liability coverage on your commercial vehicle. You will also be at risk of losing your CDL because of the impact on your driving record.
The money that you invest to defend against the ticket may be less than even one year’s insurance increase. Additionally, keeping the points off your license helps ensure that you remain eligible for your CDL.
Fighting a traffic ticket is not like a criminal trial
Yes, there is an investment involved when fighting a traffic citation. You need evidence and legal representation if you hope to achieve the best possible outcome, like the dismissal of the citation. However, the time and expense involved will be lower than a criminal trial, and there will be very little, if any, media attention to a traffic infraction case.
Although you will pay for the court’s time and legal support, those costs could be less than what you pay for in increased premiums if you plead guilty by paying the ticket. Those expenses will also be far less than needing to adjust to a lower income because you are no longer eligible for a CDL. Fighting a traffic ticket does require investment and planning, but it can protect your career and your operating budget as an owner-operator.