Texting tickets and car insurance

By Posted : 04/26/2013

state texting lawsCurrently, 44 states and Washington, D.C., have banned texting and driving, while others have partial restrictions, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. If you're ticketed in a state where texting violations add points to your driving record or are considered moving violations, an insurer may raise your premiums.

States with a texting law specifying that violations add points and/or are considered a moving violation include:

  • Alabama: 2 points
  • Colorado: 1 point
  • District of Columbia: 1 point and is a moving violation; 3 points if it is judged to have caused an accident.
  • Maryland: 1 point and a moving violation; 3 points if the texting contributed to an accident.
  • Nebraska: 3 points  
  • New York: 5 points
  • New Jersey: 3 points for third offense
  • North Dakota:  moving violation
  • Nevada: first offense not considered a moving violation; repeat offenses can have points added
  • Vermont: 2 points for first offense and 5 points for a subsequent offense
  • Virginia:  3 points
  • West Virginia: 3 points for third offense
  • Wisconsin: 4 points

Several states make an insurance surcharge less likely by specifying that breaking the texting law won't result in extra points or be considered a moving violation. They include:

  • California: no points and not a moving violation
  • Delaware: no points
  • Idaho: no points and not a moving violation
  • Iowa:  no points; not a moving violation
  • Louisiana: no points; not a moving violation
  • North Carolina: no points and not a moving violation
  • Pennsylvania: no points and not a moving violation
  • Tennessee: no points and not a moving violation
  • Washington: no points and not a moving violation

There are a handful of states that prohibit insurers from raising rates based on texting violations. These are:

  • Idaho
  • Massachusetts
  • North Carolina
  • Washington

 

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