Some people have the worst luck when it comes to driving. Their cars are dent magnets, and their licenses have more points than the reigning king of Donkey Kong. If you are one of these people, you could feel like the deck is stacked against you. You are constantly saddled with repair bills, or else your car looks like something out of a demolition derby. Worse yet, your reputation as a bad driver not only causes you embarrassment, it makes it very difficult for you to get insurance. In many states you might not be able to drive without a SR22, even if you have car insurance.
SR22 insurance is a document that verifies that the bearer can take financial responsibility in the event of an accident. The SR22 is usually required of people caught driving uninsured, or with multiple traffic offenses within a very short timeframe.
If your state requires you to have this coverage, you would need to get it in addition to whatever insurance coverage you already have, which you may be able to take care of through a site like AcceptanceInsurance.com.
A bad driving record won’t just cost you more in insurance; it can also interfere with your life. For example, if you have a job where you might need to drive a company car, a bad driving record could prevent you from getting hired.
So how do you overcome the financial stigma and emotional shame of a bad driving record?
Cleaning Up Your Record
Luckily, your driving record is not set in stone. Over time the points will drop off naturally; and if you can avoid getting any more traffic violations, your record will naturally resolve itself. Of course, this method can take a long time, and in the interim you still have to deal with the stigma. There is one option that could remove the points more quickly, and can help prevent you from accruing more points.
Go Back to School
Driving school, to be exact. Many states will remove points from your driving record if you take a state-approved driver safety course. Some states might require court approval to remove the points, while others might only require you to successfully complete the course.
Although these courses cost money, it could ultimately be less than what you would pay in higher insurance rates for the duration that those points are on your license.
In addition to removing points, a driver safety course will also give you the tools you need to not only learn from past driving mistakes, but to avoid making mistakes in the future. You could even come out of the experience a better and more knowledgeable driver than your friends and family members.
The driving safety course should include classroom instruction on current traffic laws as well as general driving safety tips. Depending on your state, the classes could be held solely in physical classrooms, or you could also have the option to take them online.
Classes can last several days, to several weeks, and the number of points removed depends on the policies and procedures for your state.
Because each state has its own criteria, you need to contact your department of motor vehicles for more information on finding schools, reporting completion, and removing points.
Maintaining Your Record
Once you have successfully completed the driving course, you should check with your department of motor vehicles to make sure the course has been applied to your license. You can also view the remaining points you have left, and some places will also tell you when or if those points will fall off.
As time goes on, you should try your best to keep your record clean. This doesn’t just involve driving well, it also means disputing any tickets or violations in court, if they occur after you have completed the course.
If you do successfully dispute a ticket or violation, you should also check with your bureau of motor vehicles to ensure that those points have not been added to your license.