Being charged with a reckless driving offense in Virginia is a serious situation that requires the right response. Therefore, all defendants should equip themselves with a good understanding of the issue, as well as the help that a trusted reckless driving lawyer can provide.

Here’s everything you need to know when charged with reckless driving in Virginia.

Your Reckless Driving Questions Answered

What Constitutes Reckless Driving in Virginia?

The Code of Virginia states that “any person who drives a vehicle on any highway recklessly or at a speed or in a manner so as to endanger the life, limb, or property of any person shall be guilty of reckless driving”.

Further examples are given too, including driving at over 85mph or exceeding the speed limit in any location by over 20mph. Reckless driving charges are normally Class 1 misdemeanors but can be upgraded to a felony depending on the circumstances, such as whether anyone was hurt as a result of the offense.

What Are the Penalties for Reckless Driving in Virginia?

Assuming reckless driving in Virginia is deemed a Class 1 Misdemeanor, a conviction will probably lead to a six month license suspension. You may also face a financial penalty of up to £2,500 and up to 12 months in jail.

However, it should be noted that penalties may vary greatly from one case to another. You will be judged on the circumstances of the offense while causing additional damage or being charged with a DUI, for example, could lead to far more severe punishments. A reckless driving lawyer will ensure that you have a clearer insight into what to expect.

How Will a Reckless Driving Conviction Impact My Driving Record?

When convicted for reckless driving in Virginia, the immediate penalties only tell half the story. There are several unexpected repercussions and long-term consequences that may negatively impact your life – not least in relation to your driving record.

Reckless driving will remain on your driving record for 11 years, although a reckless driving lawyer may be able to get this reduced. It should also be noted that any points may stay on your license for up to three years while your insurance premiums will significantly increase over this duration.

Do I Need a Reckless Driving Attorney?

Legally, you are not obligated to hire a reckless driving lawyer. Nevertheless, the benefits are plentiful, which is why most defendants will seek professional help to navigate the legal process with a view to fighting or reducing the charges.

For the best results, you must select an attorney who specializes in reckless driving and road offenses. They will help prepare your defense to minimize or eliminate the legal repercussions. Their knowledge of the legal environment gives you the best chance of success while also helping you know what to expect.

What Should I Do If Pulled Over for Reckless Driving?

Being pulled over for reckless driving is a scary and daunting situation, especially if it is your first time. Law enforcers are permitted to conduct a traffic stop if they suspect an offense has been committed. So, your next moves are vital.

You should cooperate, but will also want to exercise your right to remain silent and avoid answering questions until your lawyer has been contacted. Meanwhile, you must never let an officer intimidate you into admitting guilt or fault. Otherwise, this will later be used against you in court.

Can I Fight a Reckless Driving Charge in Virginia?

In short, yes, you do have the right to contest a reckless driving charge in Virginia. There are several potential ways to do this, ranging from fault with your speedometer to showing that the traffic stop wasn’t valid.

Either way, a trusted and experienced reckless driving lawyer is best positioned to do this. Whether proving your innocence, highlighting the circumstances, or raising doubt about guilt doesn’t matter. Their expertise will ensure that the right strategies are implemented to reduce any charges and subsequent repercussions.

What Are the Potential Defenses Against Reckless Driving Charges?

As already mentioned, there are several potential defenses against reckless driving charges. Other examples include proving fault with the speed gun or showing that you needed to break the normal rules due to an emergency on the road.

A lack of intent and faulty equipment can have charges reduced or thrown out. A reckless driving lawyer will help gather evidence and witness testimonies to challenge the prosecution’s claims. After all, the burden of proof is on them to prove that you are guilty of the offense.

How Long Will a Reckless Driving Charge Stay on My Record?

Reckless driving charges can stay on your record for up to 11 years, although your experienced reckless driving lawyer may be able to reduce this even if you are found guilty of breaking the law.

The charge can subsequently impact your job opportunities and other aspects of your life. Therefore, finding a trustworthy lawyer who is capable of reducing any repercussions for your driving record, as well as your freedom, is vital. The sooner you can draw a line under the case, the sooner you can get on with the rest of your life.

Get the Best Defense With an Experienced Virginia Reckless Driving Lawyer

Reckless driving is a serious offense that may be met with significant punishments. So, if you have been hit with this type of charge, it’s imperative that your next step is the right one. Seeking legal guidance and representation is highly advised.

Here at Bernstein Hough PC, our experienced lawyers can represent you to the full extent of the law. To find out more, get in touch with us today.