So you have a ticket on your driving record. You, and a good part of the country! Insurance companies will consider these tickets when determining your insurance rate. But some tickets have more influence than others. If you have one or two "minor" tickets, the insurance company may not choose to increase your rates for these little infractions. But if you have a "major" ticket, things might be different.
The following are some examples of what is typically considered a minor ticket and major ticket. However, keep in mind that sometimes how a ticket is classified varies by province or by insurer.
Minor traffic convictions:
- Speeding up to 49km/h over the speed limit (Note: The cut-off may vary.)
- Following too closely
- Failing to signal before a turn or lane change
- Failing to obey a stop sign
- Failing to wear a seat belt
- Failing to produce driver's licence or proof of insurance
Major traffic convictions:
- Failing to report an accident
- Improper passing of a school bus
- Speeding in a school zone
- Driving without insurance
- Speeding in excess of 50km/h (Note: The cut-off may vary.)
Serious or criminal traffic convictions:
There is another class of traffic violation that takes into account serious Highway Traffic Act convictions or criminal convictions.
- Driving while licence is under suspension
- Careless driving
- Dangerous driving
- Impaired driving
- Failure to stop at the scene of an accident
- Failure to stop for a police officer
- Failure or refusal to take a breath test
- Criminal negligence committed in the operation or use of a motor vehicle
- Manslaughter committed in the operation or use of a motor vehicle
Full disclosure - honesty is the best policy
Chances are, a major conviction on your record will greatly affect your insurance rate. But don't fudge the information you input on your insurance quote to get a better rate. Insurance companies will most certainly check the driving records of all people applying for coverage. If they find that you misrepresented any information on your application, the insurance company can cancel your policy for "non-disclosure". This type of cancellation shows as a black mark on your insurance record and can mean you will be paying higher insurance rates for many years to come.