Prince William County Traffic Lawyer

Traffic violations vary in their severity, which can make it wise to seek the advice of a Prince William County traffic lawyer. A simple speeding ticket only requires the payment of a fine and does not result in any criminal charges. On the other hand, reckless driving may result in a criminal charge with certain penalties in the event of a conviction.

With the help of a Prince William County criminal defense lawyer, you may be able to resolve the charges against you in a more positive manner. If your goal is to reduce the potential penalties that you may be facing for traffic violations, then getting legal advice may be beneficial to you so that you are aware of all of your options.

Demerit Points

All traffic violations, whether they are mere tickets or result in criminal charges, are reported to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (“DMV”). The DMV assigns demerit points to driving records according to the seriousness of the offense. Drivers can receive three, four, or six demerit points on their driving records, depending on the nature of the traffic violation. There are also some infractions which carry zero demerit points, and are not reported to insurance companies.

For example, a speeding ticket for driving five mph over the posted speed limit can result in the DMV assessing three demerit points to a driving record. A speeding ticket for driving 25 mph over the posted speed limit can result in the DMV assessing six demerit points to a driving record. As these points accumulate, negative consequences can occur for defendant drivers.

Drivers who accrue too many demerit points on their driving records within a certain timeframe may be subject to suspension of their driving privileges. These points also can result in increased insurance rates.

Therefore, individuals who are in danger of accumulating demerit points on their driving records may wish to consult a traffic lawyer in Prince William County before making any decisions about their cases.

Criminal Penalties for Reckless Driving

One of the most common types of traffic violations that may result in criminal charges is reckless driving pursuant to Va. Code § 46.2-852. Reckless driving is a broad offense that can include many different unsafe driving maneuvers. Under Va. Code § 46.2-868, reckless driving is a Class 1 misdemeanor. Potential penalties include a jail sentence of up to one year and up to a $2,500 fine.

In some cases, however, reckless driving is a Class 6 felony, such as when driving privileges have been revoked or suspended for moving violations and the reckless driving directly results in the death of another person.

A felony conviction for reckless driving may result in a prison sentence ranging from one to five years and a fine of up to $2,500. Individuals typically must disclose felony convictions on job and school applications, which could adversely affect their employment and career opportunities.

Other Repercussions for Reckless Driving

Criminal penalties resulting from a reckless driving conviction are in addition to any other consequences of a traffic violation. These consequences may include:

  • License suspension of up to six months
  • Demerit points added to driving records
  • Increased motor vehicle insurance rates

All of these repercussions from a history of traffic violations are likely to result in increased costs and expenses related to the ability to drive. Maintaining driving privileges may be a condition of employment or impact the ability of individuals to get back and forth to work. Loss of a job due to an inability to drive only can worsen an already difficult financial situation.

Consult with a Prince William County Traffic Attorney Today

While a traffic violation may initially not seem too important, even a single ticket can be costly to you. That ticket also can contribute to the suspension of your license in the future if you were to accumulate additional traffic violations or driving-related criminal charges.

Consulting a Prince William County traffic lawyer can be beneficial to you when you are facing any sort of driving or traffic offense.

If you find yourself facing traffic violations, it makes sense to get legal advice before taking any action to resolve this matter. However, you should seek out advice as quickly as possible following the incident that led to the violation or charges, since these cases tend to move rather quickly through the court system.