Virginia Motorcycle Laws for Out-of-State Riders

Virginia highway laws apply to everyone driving or riding on them, even if they are licensed out-of-state and just passing through. There are certain unique aspects of Virginia driving and motorcycle riding law that any out of state rider should be aware of in advance. If an out-of-state driver is charged with a traffic violation or involved in an accident in Virginia they should also be sure to consult with a motorcycle accident attorney who will know the local law and how to work with the local courts.

Tips for Out-of-State Motorcycle Riders

The first is thing an out-of-state motorcycle rider should do is visit the DMV website. The Virginia DMV is a wonderful source of information. If someone is from out-of-state and they are not familiar with the local laws, they need to consult any resources that they have available to them. One thing people do need to know is that the speed limits on the highways in Virginia are not as high as some other states, especially if they are from the Midwest where 75 miles per hour is common for the speed limit. In Virginia, going 75 miles an hour on a highway may result in a reckless driving ticket.

Another unique aspect of Virginia law that out-of-state rider’s should know is that simply failing to use a turn signal may result in a judge or jury finding that an individual contributed to their accident, barring them from recovery.

Motorcycle Laws in Virginia

Out-of-state drivers need to know that the same laws are going to apply to them on a motorcycle as apply to drivers on the road. And, they have an obligation to exercise reasonable care. They will be held responsible if they cause an injury or an accident. It applies to drivers from out-of-state also. Sometimes people think that if they are passing through somewhere one time that they can speed. If they get a speeding ticket they can ignore it and it will not follow them or if they get into an accident they can just leave and they will never hear about it again, but those things are very much not true.

If someone has traffic violations in Virginia, they need to deal with them. They should hire a lawyer to contest them or they can pay the violations, but if they do not do anything that can lead to a suspension of their license even though it occurred in Virginia and they may lose their license in the other jurisdiction as well. There is a National Driver Register that keeps data on vehicle drivers as well as motorcycle riders, and if someone has Virginia traffic violations that they do not respond to, they risk suspension of their license.

In addition, by driving on the highways in Virginia a motorcycle rider is agreeing to jurisdiction in a Virginia court, so they can be sued for any accident or injuries that they caused. Even if they are not from the area, they can be sued in Virginia.

Particular Dangers of Riding in Virginia

Weather is one thing that out-of-state motorcycle riders should be aware of when driving in Virginia. If someone is not familiar with the local weather weather they should familiarize themselves with it before they get out on the roadway. Also, in Northern Virginia, the traffic is very heavy. If someone has never ridden in a big city, the traffic between DC, throughout the beltway and into Northern Virginia is very heavy. If someone is not used to riding in those conditions, it is something that they need to be aware of and they need to maybe plan ahead, plan out their route, and check traffic reports before they get out on the road.