How Can Road Rage Impact Car Insurance?
- What is it?
- Legal consequences
- Reducing rates
You won’t get in trouble for your emotions, but your emotions could get you into trouble! If you get into an accident due to road rage, you could face fines, license suspension, and car insurance increases—plus designation as a high-risk driver.
Everyone loses their cool sometimes, and some muttering or cursing is no big deal if you keep it to yourself.
But if road rage leads to dangerous driving and accidents, it becomes a serious problem and makes you a liability on the road. It can also lead to a big spike in your insurance premium.
Luckily, insurance comparison app Jerry has you covered. No matter your driving history, Jerry can help you find affordable insurance with a reputable company.
And since Jerry reviews your coverage options every six months, you can rest easy knowing that you’re always getting the best rate.
What is road rage?
It’s important to distinguish between road rage and aggressive driving. While they may be related, they aren’t the same thing.
Road rage is an emotion. It’s that molten anger in your gut when another driver cuts you off. It’s the frustration you feel when you’re running late and there’s tons of traffic on the road.
Aggressive driving is a behavior and may be triggered by road rage. You might get away with road rage, but aggressive driving endangers you and other drivers.
Legal consequences of road rage
You could face legal consequences for a road rage-induced accident. And you may be ticketed for dangerous behavior like illegal passes, speeding, swerving, or tailgating.
The first time you’re pulled over for driving recklessly, you’ll probably receive a citation. But the more often you do this, the longer your record will become. If you allow road rage to tempt you into bad behavior—like verbal threats, physical intimidation, or causing damage to other vehicles—then you could face serious legal trouble.
Police officers may refer you to the courts if you’re a repeat offender. You could also be sued by the other party. A court could suspend your license and you may be required to pay damages.
Ultimately, when you demonstrate an increased probability of hurting yourself and others by breaking the law, the court may get involved.
MORE: What is a citation?
If you commit a traffic violation out of road rage, you will likely get pulled over and ticketed. You’ll need to pay the fee and your insurance company may be notified. Receive too many tickets and you’ll likely find yourself with a suspended license. You may even have a difficult time finding insurance coverage.
With a slew of violations on record, you will be classified as a high-risk driver. This means that insurance companies can charge you an arm and a leg for your premium—or may refuse to cover you at all.
Either way, aggressive driving will make it more difficult for you to find affordable car insurance. And while there are still ways to obtain coverage—like comparison shopping with an app like Jerry—a better strategy is to keep your premium low by keeping a lid on your temper.
Losing your license
Even if you only commit minor violations like illegal passing or running red lights, they can pile up. Too many violations will lead to points on your driving record. If you accumulate a certain number of points, the state may suspend your license.
It’s both costly and a hassle to reinstate your license once it’s been suspended.
You can take a defensive driving course to remove a point, but major violations and license suspensions will stay on your record for up to a decade or more. Both the DMV and insurance companies look at this record regularly. Even when you reinstate your license, your insurance costs will remain high for years.
High risk drivers are required to file a special form and pay additional money to be permitted on the road.
SR22 is a certificate of financial responsibility that you’ll need in order to drive after a license suspension.
But you can’t do it yourself—your insurance company must file the form on your behalf. Each month, you’ll have to meet their requirements in order to remain insured and allowed on the road.
If you let SR22 lapse, your insurance company will contact the DMV, who can re-suspend your license.
Some companies don’t offer SR22 forms, since it means extra work and extra risk. The companies that do offer this type of policy tend to charge high fees. Jerry is a free app that can help you find a good deal on car insurance after a license suspension.
Key Takeaway Road rage can lead to aggressive driving, which can result in legal consequences and more expensive car insurance payments.
Road rage can lead to serious accidents. High tempers and less focus can be a fatal combination.
On top of tickets and license suspensions, aggressive driving could earn you a starring role in a car accident.
You could even be the victim and the criminal if you get yourself into an accident because of reckless driving.
And apart from being dangerous to you and others, a series of accidents creates a pattern in the eyes of the insurance company.
To them, you’re now a risky driver who is likely to cost them more money over the long term with claims payouts. To compensate, the company will increase your premium—sometimes significantly.
How to reduce your rates
If your insurance payment is set to go up after a road rage accident, it’s worth looking at the various ways to mitigate that.
Qualify for other discounts. From being a good student to bundling your auto and home insurance policies, there are lots of discounts for which you might be eligible. Check with your agent or use Jerry to quickly get car insurance quotes online and compare rates.
Take a defensive driving class to remove points from your record. Don’t let points accumulate on your record. In most states, you can take an approved defensive driving class and get a point removed. These are typically online courses that take less than six hours to complete—just make sure that the driving school forwards a certificate of completion to your insurance company.
Drive safely and wait for the points to drop off your record. Eventually, points on your record will evaporate—but you may need to wait three to five years. Drive safely and don’t get into any new accidents so that you have a clean record.
Shop around. You could be leaving money on the table if you’ve had the same car insurance policy for years. Shop around with Jerry, a free app that rapidly compares car insurance policies from more than 40 different providers. It also handles the phone calls and paperwork so you don’t have to.
Here’s how much the average driver with an offense saved using Jerry:
|Violation||Price before Jerry||Price after Jerry|
|Minor offense: improper passing, passing school bus, speeding under 15, illegal turn, defective equipment||$2466||$1546|
|Major offense: speeding over 15, driving with suspended license, racing, hit and run, open container, reckless driving, DUI, suspension||$2916||$1969|
Ultimately, road rage doesn’t have to impact your car insurance. Your insurance company will only raise your rate if you cause an accident or get a ticket. So keep your rageful feelings to yourself and keep your anger from affecting your driving behavior.
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