Although they may seem relatively minor, there are wide variety of traffic offenses, such as reckless driving, that can have a huge impact on your criminal record and ability to drive. The following is information on the difference between these driving offenses and where reckless driving falls. To learn more call and schedule a consultation with a Fairfax reckless driving lawyer today.
Infractions are the least serious and are only punishable by a fine and demerit points based on what the infraction is. Infractions, however, are not jailable offenses and even the demerit points are typically not permanent.
In contrast, misdemeanor and felony traffic offenses are criminal charges that may result in a criminal conviction and therefore have a lifelong impact on somebody’s record for the rest of their life. These offenses may not be eligible for expungement or to be sealed and will not disappear no matter how much time passes.
In addition, misdemeanors and felonies are jailable offenses that carry the possibility of time in prison. They are also punishable by hefty fines and they can result in more serious consequences than just a few fines. Demerit points also would affect your driving record for a misdemeanor or a felony and too many demerit points for either infractions or misdemeanors or felonies will result in a suspended driver’s license.
Minor traffic offenses throughout Virginia are running a stop sign or driving without lights on. Major traffic violations are driving on a suspended license, driving under the influence, or a hit and run.
Reckless driving is a serious offense. It’s a class 1 misdemeanor which is the most serious class of misdemeanor possible. Reckless driving is more than just a speeding ticket as it encompasses a whole bunch of other moving violations that are considered to be reckless.
A lawyer can help you understand the difference between speeding and reckless driving and can also help you figure out what your best course of action is to avoid reckless driving having a serious impact on your life.
Reckless driving is different from a speeding ticket because it’s a criminal charge, whereas a speeding ticket is an infraction. The difference between these is in the penalties available. For just a speeding ticket, you will be given a fine along with a few demerit points. It’s a three point violation for speeds 1 to 9 over the speed limit, for example. In contrast, reckless driving is 20 miles per hour or more over the speed limit or 80 miles per hour or more anywhere; it is a six point violation, which not only effects the driving record, but also effects the criminal record and it is a jailable offense.
The way that you can tell the difference is by looking at the documents. If it is a speeding ticket, then it should say “speeding” next to what speed you were charged with and it will give you the option to waive your appearance in court. If it is reckless driving, you will have been given a summons that you have to sign saying that you agree to appear in court because there’s no option to prepay the fine.
The role of an attorney in a serious traffic case in Fairfax is to provide a strong defense to help you have the charges reduced or dismissed. They do this by providing a strong cross examination of the police officer or the prosecutor and by properly admitting evidence in your defense in your case.
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