Suspended License Lawyer
Any kind of traffic or speeding violation can instantly cause stress or worry, even if you were unaware that you were violating the law. In some cases, you might not see a stop sign and continue driving through it. If a cop sees this, they may let you off with a warning or give you a ticket and let you on your way. However, recklessly driving is a serious offense, and a police officer can charge you with reckless driving if you were excessively speeding, if you hit or injured someone, or even if the officer deems your driving as being reckless in appearance. If an officer has recently charged you with reckless driving, you might have many questions and be unsure of the penalties and laws surrounding this type of ticket. For more information, read below.
What Constitutes As Reckless Driving?
The exact definition of reckless driving will depend on the state you received your ticket. However, there are a few reasons common in many states that you might receive a reckless driving ticket. These reasons are:
- Speeding 20 mph or higher above the limit, or speeding more than 80 mph.
- Placing a person or their property in danger, whether this is on a public road, a driveway, or a parking lot.
- Illegally passing other cars, like a school bus, at the top of a hill, a railroad crossing, or when there are pedestrians present.
- Racing other vehicles on a public road.
- Hitting one or more vehicles due to negligence and recklessness.
Are Speeding Tickets And Reckless Driving Tickets the Same Thing?
No. A court does not consider a speeding ticket to be a misdemeanor or a felony and it is typically resolved through paying a fine or going to court and arguing against it. A speeding ticket does not incur a criminal record. A reckless driving ticket, however, carries much more serious penalties and can include huge fines, mandatory court dates, and even jail time.
How Does a Judge Determine How To Penalize Someone?
Reckless driving charges can vary. In many states, if you are convicted of recklessly driving, you can receive:
- Points off your driving record
- Suspension of your license
- Exorbitant fines
- A permanent criminal record, and
- Jail time
However, not all reckless driving tickets are the same and not all will include these punishments. A judge will typically look at your driving record to see how many other traffic issues you have had (running through stop lights, excessive speeding), how you interacted with the officer at the scene, if anyone was hurt during the accident, or if there was damage to property and even your demeanor and level of respect at your court hearing.
Should I Hire an Attorney?
You do not have to hire an attorney and you can represent yourself at your court hearing. However, reckless driving laws can become very complex in any state and a traffic lawyer Fairfax, VA relies on can look at every facet of your case to give you the best possible defense. If a police officer recently charged you with reckless driving and you are unsure of how to proceed from here, turn to a lawyer to go over your case and represent you in court.
Thank you to our friends and contributors at Dave Albo – Attorney for their insight into criminal defense and reckless driving tickets.