Demerit Points and Insurance

Demerit points affect insurance where the driver has accumulated too many demerits, causing the licence to be suspended.

How Demerit Points Affect Your Insurance Premiums

Demerit points do not directly affect Ontario insurance rates.

It’s the conviction and the associated demerits that affect insurance rates.

Although a traffic or speeding ticket may or many not have demerit points, your insurance company looks at “convictions” for traffic tickets to determine your insurance rate.

What is a Conviction?

Convictions are where the driver has been convicted at court or paid the traffic ticket.

Where the conviction or ticket has demerit points, the accumulation of demerit points can cause a licence suspension.

Where the licence is suspended most insurance rates will go into high risk rates, of thousands of dollars per year for 3 years.

Then each year your insurance company reviews your driving record as one of the factors in determining the amount of insurance you will pay.

Insurance companies look at convictions and types of traffic tickets, not the accumulation of demerit points to base your rates upon.

Factors Affecting Insurance Rates

As well as driving convictions, your insurance company will also look at:

  • the vehicle
  • any accident claims
  • where the driver lives
  • driver’s age, sex and address
  • how far the driver commutes to work

Many of the above the driver has no control over, drivers do have the ability to control the convictions by:

  • driving within the rules of the road
  • disputing any traffic tickets they do receive, and
  • where they do receive a ticket, delay any conviction
    • past insurance renewal dates

Where the driver does receive a traffic ticket fighting the ticket may:

  • reduce the implications
  • avoid licence suspensions
  • save insurance increases on the insurance, and
  • reduce or remove any demerit points

Licence Suspensions

Where a licence is suspended the insurance rates will double or go into high risk rates of thousands of dollars per year.

Each class of drivers licence has a limit whereupon the licence will be suspended:

  • G1 Licence
    • any traffic ticket with 4 or more points
    • any accumulation of 6 or more points
    • any novice driver violation
  • G2 Licence
    • any traffic ticket with 4 or more points
    • any accumulation of 6 or more points
    • any novice driver violation
  • G Licence
    • licence review interview at 8 points
    • suspension at 15 points

When assessing your automobile insurance rates, insurance companies do not look at demerit points but your driving record and convictions.

Driver Records and Insurance

The most important factors insurance companies look are:

  • what is their risk to insure the driver?
  • is the driver likely to be involved in an accident,
    • will there be personal injury or
    • property damage

To determine what fee to charge for insurance, insurance companies look at historical averages of drivers.

Statistics have shown that drivers with:

  • poor driving habits
  • convictions for traffic tickets, and
  • previous accidents or claims

These drivers are more likely to be involved in accident causing claims on the automobile insurance.

Drivers with convictions will pay more for insurance than drivers with clean driving records.

Fighting traffic tickets will ensure that convictions and points are kept to the minimum.

Traffic Ticket Convictions

Insurance companies categorize convictions on a driving record (abstract) as:

  • Minor traffic convictions, and
  • Major traffic convictions

Minor traffic tickets with the associated demerit points are tickets such as, speeding under 50km/h, red lights, turning violations.

Minor traffic tickets may increase the insurance, to which three minor tickets can put the driver into high risk insurance rates.

Major traffic tickets are tickets such as speeding 50km/h or more, careless driving, and fail to remain accidents.

Major tickets will immediately increase the insurance, the driver may be refused insurance or put into high risk or facility insurance.

As insurance companies are private for profit businesses they set their own rates for increases as they see fit.

As a general rule the more traffic tickets the driver has, the higher the insurance rates will be.

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