Virtually everyone speeds at one time or another. The question is how often, by how much, and do you get caught? If you get charged, what are the consequences? Are you going to get demerit points? Will there be a licence suspension? How much of a fine will there be? Could I get jail time? Is this going to cause insurance problems? Let’s take a look…
Speeding charges under HTA s.128 are generally issued for rates of speed no more than 49 km/h over the posted speed limit. However, they can also be issued for rates of speed 50 km/h or greater over the posted speed limit. Demerit points are set out by the MTO as follows:
|Rate of Speeding||Demerit Points|
|+1 to +15 km/h||0|
|+16 to +29 km/h||3|
|+30 to +49 km/h||4|
|+50 km/h or greater||6|
Generally, as the rate of speeding increases so too does the fine. A conviction for Speeding at 50 km/h or greater can result in a court ordered suspension as follows:
“(15) Subject to subsection 207 (7), where a court has convicted a person for a contravention of this section and has determined that the person convicted was driving at a rate of speed of 50 or more kilometres per hour greater than the speed limit, the court may,
(a) suspend the driver’s licence of the person for a period of not more than 30 days;
(b) upon the first subsequent conviction where the court determined in respect of each conviction that the person was driving at a rate of speed of 50 or more kilometres per hour greater than the speed limit, suspend the driver’s licence of the person for a period of not more than 60 days;
(c) upon the second subsequent conviction or an additional subsequent conviction, where the court determined in respect of each conviction that the person was driving at a rate of speed of 50 or more kilometres per hour greater than the speed limit, suspend the driver’s licence of the person for a period of not more than one year. 2005, c. 26, Sched. A, s. 17 (9).”
Also known as Race Motor Vehicle, these charges are generally issued once a driver reaches 50 km/h over the posted speed limit. Stunt Driving carries a fixed 6 demerit point penalty regardless of the rate of speed driven.
The penalty section for Stunt Driving is as follows:
“(2) Every person who contravenes subsection (1) is guilty of an offence and on conviction is liable to a fine of not less than $2,000 and not more than $10,000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than six months, or to both, and in addition his or her driver’s licence may be suspended,
(a) on a first conviction under this section, for not more than two years; or
(b) on a subsequent conviction under this section, for not more than 10 years. 2007, c. 13, s. 21.”
While the HTA describes the rate of fine as ranging between $2,000 and $10,000, it is important to keep in mind that this is not the total payable fine. The total payable fine includes a 25% victim fine surcharge causing the actual fine owed to the court to range between $2,500 and $12,500. A conviction can also result in up to a 6 month term of imprisonment depending on the facts of the offence and prior driving history. A conviction can also result in a driver’s licence suspension up to two years for a first offence or 10 years for a subsequent offence.
When it comes to the impact of a conviction on your insurability or your insurance rate, the most accurate source of information will be your insurance broker. It is common for a 6 demerit point Speeding or a Stunt Driving conviction to result in being forced onto high risk insurance.
If you are stopped by the police and charged for traveling over the speed limit, it is important to know the impact of a conviction. Prior convictions can result progressively worse insurance and licencing problems, even jail time.