Reckless driving is a criminal offense. You don’t want a criminal record. You need a tough criminal defense lawyer who knows how to defend you against this charge in Northern Virginia. At Williams Stone Carpenter Buczek, PC, we defend innocent drivers from charges of reckless driving throughout the state.
You should treat charges of reckless driving in Virginia very seriously. In our state, reckless driving is a Class 1 misdemeanor. A Class 1 misdemeanor is the misdemeanor with the most severe potential punishment. A person convicted of a Class 1 misdemeanor may be sent to jail for not more than twelve months and/or fined not more than $2,500. Reckless driving is only one of many crimes classified as a Class 1 misdemeanor in Virginia. Reckless driving will also result in 6 points added to your license, will stay on your record for 11 years, and is likely to result in a steep rise in your insurance premiums for many years to come.
More on Virginia Reckless Driving Penalties
The maximum penalty for reckless driving is:
- Up to (12) months in jail
- Driver’s license suspension (6) months
- (6) months suspension to operate a motor vehicle in VA if licensed elsewhere
- A fine of up to $2500
- Driving over 100 mph is almost certain to include jail time
- In many jurisdictions, license suspension for speeds over 80 mph are likely
- Also note, if your license is suspended for any period of time, Virginia DMV will report the suspension to the state that issued your driver’s license. Most states now honor these suspensions and will suspend your license in the state where your license was issued.
Reasons for Being Charged with Reckless Driving
The most common reason for being charged with reckless driving results from speeding. However, there are several factors that may lead to a Virginia reckless driving charge and up to 11 years of a charge remaining on your record, including:
- Passing a stopped, properly equipped school bus
- Overtaking/passing an emergency vehicle
- Improper brakes, or while vehicle not under proper control
- Driving too fast for traffic conditions
- Passing a vehicle at a crest or a grade
- An overloaded vehicle that interferes with driver control
- Passing another vehicle at a railroad grade crossing
- Failing to give proper signal
- Failure to yield right-of-way when merging onto a highway
- Passing two vehicles abreast
- Driving two abreast in a single lane
- Reckless driving within parking lots
Can I Get My Charge Reduced?
Fines from reckless driving charges are a major source of income for local counties along Interstate I-95. The fines for reckless driving are high and counties count on these fines as income. This is a bad deal for you. Call Williams Stone Carpenter Buczek, PC right away to discuss your situation and circumstances that may help you get a reckless driving charge reduced to speeding. A few of these include:
- You have an excellent driving record
- Whether your speedometer was completely accurate
- Law enforcement radar calibration issues
- Legitimate emergencies
We will attack your charges of reckless driving from every angle. Moving and stationary radars are not perfect. Officers often have trouble remembering important details under cross-examination. Our attorneys will work with you to obtain the best possible outcome for your case. When working with us, you should be ready to do the following:
- Obtain a copy of your driving record or work with us to do so
- Get your speedometer calibrated
- Enroll in a driver education class in Virginia
- Community service
Excuses That Will Not Help You Fight A Ticket
Everyone has an excuse for a traffic ticket. Though it may be true, many excuses simply are not valid in court and can potentially harm your defense if used. Some of these excuses include:
- I was just trying to pass
- There was a semi going too slow and I was only trying to get around
- I was keeping up with traffic
- I needed to find a rest area
- I was driving a new car and wasn’t used to the controls yet
- My cruise control was on and I have no idea how this happened
- I was distracted and wasn’t paying attention
Typical Behaviors Resulting in a Reckless Driving Charge
- Driver distraction or texting
- Failure to use turn signals
- Failing to yield the right-of-way
- Not checking blind spots
- Running stop signs or lights
- Drunk driving
- Eating while driving
- Road rage
Reckless Driving FAQ in Virginia
Many people choose to simply plead guilty to reckless driving charges in Virginia. You should really speak to an attorney before doing anything to make sure you aren’t admitting to something that could easily be dismissed or reduced, saving you thousands of dollars and a permanent criminal record. By calling our law firm, we can address some of the following most frequently asked questions.
- Will I go to jail if convicted of reckless driving?
- Will a reckless driving charge put points on my driving record? How many?
- Can I still get a security clearance with a reckless driving charge?
- Will my charge be dismissed for successful completion of driving school?
- How severe are the penalties associated with Virginia reckless driving law?
- How can a police officer issue me a reckless driving citation if I crashed my own car?
- How much will it cost me to hire a reckless driving attorney in Virginia?
- Why should I fight my reckless driving charge?
- Are reckless driving charges tougher for those under 18?
- Can I lose my job if convicted of a reckless driving charge?
- What are abusive driver fees?
Contact Williams Stone Carpenter Buczek, PC
Your driving record is important. Our team of attorneys will take advantage of all of the situations & factors listed above to provide you with the strong defense you deserve. We have office locations in Stafford & Manassas. We are ready to discuss your situation. Call Williams Stone Carpenter Buczek, PC today.