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Why Are California Speeding Tickets So Expensive?

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Fines for speeding tickets in California are among the highest in the nation, with several surcharges that quickly increase the base fine for your infraction. Not only do California speeding tickets carry harsh penalties, they are also associated with dramatically increased insurance costs. According to a study published in Popular Mechanics, expect your insurance premium to rise by up to 20 times the original cost of the speeding ticket. An experienced speeding ticket attorney can help you avoid these costs by defending your interests in court.


Speeding Ticket Fines 

Base fines for California speeding tickets are:

These fines are doubled if the infraction took place in a construction zone.

In California, the maximum fines for speeding tickets are as follows:

If you are in a construction zone, maximum speeding fines increase to:

Fines are also higher in dedicated safety enhancement zones.

Why the discrepancy between the base fee and the maximum fine? California adds several surcharges to your speeding ticket. This base fine is subject to a 20 percent surcharge. For example, if you are pulled over for driving 51 mph when the speed limit is 25 mph, you will receive a base fine of $490 and a surcharge of $98 for a total of $588.

Other added charges may include:


Points for Speeding Tickets

Speeding tickets CA add a point to your driving record, or two points for speeds exceeding 100 mph. Your license can be suspended if you receive more than four points within 12 months, more than six points within 24 months, or more than eight points within 36 months. Some judges will immediately suspend a driver’s license for an egregious speeding violation.

How long are speeding tickets on your record? One-point violations are usually cleared from your driving record after 39 months. If you get a speeding ticket and fail to appear in court, that infraction will remain on your record for five years. In some cases, you can have a point removed from your record by completing a state-approved defensive driving course.


If you’ve received a speeding ticket in California, an experienced speeding tickets lawyer can negotiate for reduced penalties on your behalf. Contact The Ticket Clinic for a free consultation at 1-800-CITATION. We have 10 California offices and have defended more than 3 million traffic ticket cases across the nation since 1987.