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Can Traffic Tickets Affect My Bowling Green Car Accident Claim?

If you or your family member is involved in a car accident, the most important thing to do is seek medical care and obtain a police or accident report. A police or accident report  typically comes with traffic tickets that could have been issued to you or the at-fault driver. These tickets help determine who is responsible for the accident and may significantly impact the outcome of your car accident claim.

If you receive more than two traffic tickets within three years, you will likely receive an insurance rate increase. However, if you receive only a single traffic ticket within this period, you may not have an insurance increase, and the ticket may not have a significant impact on your claim. The outcome of your claim may depend on the insurance history and rate increase,  your driving record, and how fast you were driving when you were issued a traffic citation.

What’s In This Post:

Why Does A Traffic Ticket Matter?

Officer issuing a citationOne factor used to determine fault after an accident is if one of the drivers apologized for the crash. Even if they were not responsible for the accident, merely apologizing implicates them. Another factor to consider is ticket citation. If a driver is issued with a Kentucky traffic ticket, it could be used to prove negligence.

Many pieces of evidence can determine the outcome of an auto accident claim. Traffic tickets are one example of such parts of evidence. For instance, if a driver ignored the red light and caused an accident then received a ticket, the citation can be used as proof that the driver was negligent and responsible for the crash.

However, Kentucky is among the twelve states that employ no-fault auto insurance laws. The no-fault laws require drivers to include personal injury protection (PIP)  into their auto insurance coverage. However, motorcycle insurance coverages are exempt from this rule.

Under the PIP coverage, your car insurance provider pays for all your damages such as medical bills, lost wages, and all special damages caused by an injury you sustained in a car crash. This will have no bearing on who was responsible for the accident.

In Kentucky, you can buy a basic PIP policy with minimum coverage and receive benefits amounting to $10,000 for all medical expenses incurred, lost wages, and next of kin benefits if the claim was a wrongful death. Note that the $10,000 is for the basic or minimum coverage.

When Does A Traffic Ticket Impact Your Claim?

There are instances where the traffic ticket does impact your claim. For example, when a driver pleads guilty of having received a traffic ticket. A driver may plead guilty for running the red light and, in essence, admit fault. So the admission of guilt can be used as evidence in a Bowling Green car accident claim.

When Does Traffic Ticket Not Impact Your Claim?

When police are called to investigate an accident, they can issue a traffic citation to you or the other driver. A traffic citation is similar to implicating the offending driver criminally. If you were injured in the crash, you could file a claim or civil case against the driver who received the traffic citation.

However, a typical traffic ticket cannot significantly impact the outcome of a personal injury claim. In such instances, only a guilty plea to traffic citation may be admissible in a personal injury claim or lawsuit. However, the rule is that the jury should not be made aware of any existing traffic tickets.

How The Insurance Company May Use a Prior Traffic Ticket Against You

If you’ve had a traffic citation in the past or received a citation when the accident occurred, the insurance company may take advantage of the citation and use it as proof that you’re equally to blame for the accident. They may argue that by having a traffic ticket, you’re highly liable for the crash and subsequent injuries and therefore, reserve no right to be compensated.

If your driving records show that you were previously involved in an accident that saw you receive a traffic ticket, the insurance company may try to pin that incident to your injuries. They may rule out your eligibility for receiving compensation for your recent accident. Additionally, the insurance company may use your driving history and ticket citation to paint you as a reckless driver and ask the court to invalidate your claim.

While past driving habits and tickets may be used against you when negotiating a case out of court, it cannot be used in most circumstances in court since it is not relevant. In suits against semi-truck companies, the past driving habits of the driver can be used to established that the company did not follow reasonable standards in hiring their drivers.

This is one of the reasons why we recommend that you talk to a Bowling Green car accident attorney before filing a car accident claim. Your attorney is better placed to assist you in gathering crucial evidence and filing a successful car accident claim or lawsuit. They can also help you develop convincing legal defenses against the insurer or at-fault driver.

How Do You Check If A Ticket Appeared On Your Driving Record?

Kentucky driving records can be accessed online and in person. However, if you want to access driving records for the past five years, you can visit the nearest Kentucky DMV office. You don’t need to fill out any forms in advance to access the records. All you have to do is show up at the local DMV office and provide your full names and your driving license number.

If you want to check your driving records for the past three years to see if a ticket appeared on your DMV, you can do it online through the Kentucky Driver History Record System website.  You’ll be required to provide your full name and your driving license number. You’ll also need to provide an email address to help with the verification of your application. Your driving records for the last three years will be provided in soft copy and will remain valid for 14 days from the date of the application. You can print a copy or save it in PDF format to keep the results much longer.

Finally, if you want to check if a ticket appeared on your DMV or driving records for the last five years, you can visit the local Kentucky DMV office and ask to be issued with a copy of your Kentucky driving records. You’ll need to pay a processing fee of $3. However, if you made the application online, you’d have to pay a $3 processing fee plus an additional $2 for electronic convenience.  For in-person requests, you can pay in cash, check, or credit and debit cards. However, for online access, you can only make payments using credit or debit cards.

Speak With An Experienced Bowling Green Car Accident Lawyer Today

The attorneys at Flora Templeton Stuart Accident Injury Lawyers have been handling car accident cases for over 46 years. Our experienced team has the knowledge and expertise to answer all your questions and fight for the compensation you deserve. If you have been injured in a car accident or have questions about your case, contact us for your free case evaluation.

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Flora Templeton Stuart

Flora Templeton Stuart is the lead attorney and founder of the law firm Flora Templeton Stuart Accident Injury Lawyers, established in 1976. She is a nationally recognized personal injury lawyer with over 40 years of experience. Her story has been featured on Fox, The New York Times, ABC, Time, and NBC.