Your driving record is one of the most important and valuable bits of information about you and your daily habits. It can impact your life financially and professionally, and can make several aspects of owning a car either more or less expensive, depending on what’s on it. Getting a driving record costs money, however, though you might find online offers to deliver your driving record for free. Are these offers legitimate? Is it possible to find a free driving record? Let’s take a look at whether or not this is true, along with other valuable information on driving records.
There is good news and bad news here. First, the bad news. There is no legitimate way to order or obtain a driving record online, or anywhere else, for free. State and local governments are the gatekeepers of this information, and as you might expect, they are very protective of who gets access and when. In the best cases, websites and other companies that promise to deliver your driving record for free are just collecting email addresses to sell onto third-party scammers. In the worst case scenarios, providing information to these companies can result in years of financial issues and many phone calls to credit reporting agencies, trying to figure out who is using your personal information to sign up for credit cards and other accounts.
Driving records mean different things to different states, but in general they include information on a driver’s:
Beyond keeping track of your driving habits, your driving record can be used in a variety of ways that greatly impact your daily life.
Depending on where you live, you may have an option to take a class or course to reduce the number of points on your driving record. This is not true in all states, and is not true for all violations, so it’s best to check with your local department of motor vehicles to determine what is available in your area. In many cases, points and other negative items “fall off” a driving record over time, so you might not need to do anything but wait for your record to improve.
Your driving record absolutely impacts your insurance rates. Remember, insurance companies are in business to make money, and taking you at your good word is not enough for them to make a determination on what you’ll pay. Companies view your driving record as a way to learn about your driving habits and to figure out just how risky you’ll be as a customer. Lowering your insurance costs isn’t always easy, but it is possible by maintaining a good driving record, keeping an eye on your credit score, and by making sure that your driving record contains accurate and complete information.
Depending on where you live, obtaining a copy of your driving record can be as easy as making a trip to your local DMV. In some cases, you can order an unofficial copy online, or by calling your local state offices. Be aware that there are different types of driving records, and in most cases you’ll be required to pay a small fee for the service.
A clean driving record is one that is free of moving violations, wrecks, and other driving-related convictions. The length of time that violations remain on a record varies from place to place and from violation to violation.
It is completely possible to obtain insurance with a bad driving record, but your costs and policy options may be limited. Some insurance companies may limit the number of high-risk policies offered, but in many cases a policy will be offered with a higher price and deductible.
A “bad” driving record can include more than one violation, some of which may be considered more serious than others. One speeding ticket on a driving record doesn’t necessarily make it bad, but a DUI and other infractions together can add up to a bad record.
Taking classes online is often faster and cheaper than the classroom.