Some traffic offenses may not seem worth the trouble to contest, so you probably decide to plead guilty and pay the required fines. However, even minor traffic violations can cause you trouble if they add up. In the event a court convicts you of a traffic offense, you will likely end up with points on your driving record.
The state of Georgia assigns points to driving records upon conviction for certain kinds of traffic offenses. The Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS) describes some negatives results of acquiring too many points on your record.
Suspension of your license
The problem with pleading guilty to even minor traffic offenses is that they may pile up in a short period of time. The Georgia DDS will suspend your driving license if you end up with 15 points on your record within a period of 24 months. Depending on your circumstances, you will have to undergo certain steps to regain your driving privileges, including paying fees.
Increase in insurance premiums
Another reason to be careful about traffic violation points is that your auto insurance company may find out about them. Insurers are on the lookout for signs that their policy holders are driving risks. Too many points may make you seem like a careless or reckless driver. Depending on how your insurer interprets the points on your record, your insurance company may decide to raise your premiums.
Georgia allows for point reduction
You may check your driving record to see if you are in danger of acquiring too many points. If you fear you could incur a license suspension, the state offers certified improvement courses to help residents drive more defensively. After completing this course, the state may remove seven points from your record for the purposes of calculating a license suspension. You can take advantage of this option once ever five years.
The trouble that may result from gaining too many traffic violation points makes it imperative to know your options in the event you become charged with violating traffic law. You might decide it is worth it to contest the charge if you feel it could keep points off your record.