Secrets the Cops, the Courts,
(From the NMA)
and the Insurance Companies
Don't Want You
- The purpose of insurance is to cover unusual risk. Since the act of exceeding an unreasonably
low limit is hardly unusual or dangerous, the risk assumed by the insurance company is
nearly non-existant. Therefore, any surcharges issued for speeding tickets are almost pure profit.
- The profits that an insurance company generates from speeding ticket surcharges allow
them to purchase more radar and laser guns to give away free to law enforcement agencies.
This allows the police to ticket more people, which in turn ensures a constant flow of revenue to
the insurance company. The units will perform their revenue- enhancement duties for 3-5 years,
having been paid for in less than one.
- Thousands of speeding tickets are issued by traffic law enforcers who don't know or care
how to properly operate radar, VASCAR, or other speed-measurement devices. They are
ignorant of proper operating procedures, performance characteristics, and common malfunctions
- Traffic ticket fines are the cash cow of the court system. No other class of "crime" is as
profitable for state and local governments as is that of traffic tickets. Traffic courts cannot be
fair and unbiased when their finanacial welfare depends on traffic fines.
- It is not true that writing more tickets will result in fewer accidents. A 1995
Memorial Day ticket-writing binge in Connecticut resulted in a 67% increase in accidents over
the same time period in the previous year. The federal government paid $750,000 to the state
- Many speed limits are deliberately set well below the prevailing speed of safely-driven
vehicles. Doing so does not slow traffic but it does make a greater number of motorists eligible
for a speeding ticket they don't deserve.
- There is no connection between receiving an occasional traffic ticket and the likelihood of
being in an accident. Therefore, there is no justification for charging a person more for auto
insurance just because they were convicted for a traffic violation.
- Trivial or concocted traffic law violations are frequently used as an excuse to stop, detain,
and search persons for whom the police have no otherwise legitimate reason to do so. "Probable
cause" or "reasonable suspicion" are inserted after the fact and only if the motorist lodges a
- A large proportion of the stop signs erected by local governments are illegal and in
violation of state traffic regulations. They know that people don't stop for them since the
intention is to use the signs as speed control devices. This proliferation of stop signs merely
increases the number of motorists who can be cited for failing to stop when there is no reason to.
- The best protection against the "good ole boy" system where the judge, district attorney and
the arresting officer are on a first-name basis is the jury trial. Jury trials are time-consuming,
expensive, and diminish the profitability of the traffic ticket system. Therefore, state-by-state,
the right to a jury trial is being incrementally denied to traffic ticket defendants, all under the
guise of being more fair when actually it is less.
- Only a small fraction (about 2%) of all traffic tickets are seriously contested. The vast
majority of these contested tickets are dismissed or the defendant is given a significantly reduced
penalty. If just 10% of the people who received citations fought their tickets, the entire system of
government extortion would collapse within a matter of months.
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