You face harsh punishments and long-term consequences in your life if you are convicted of DUI in Virginia. Even if it is a first offense, you must do everything possible to fight the charges you face.
One better option if you cannot get the charges dismissed may be to get the charges reduced to reckless driving. However, you would need the help of an experienced DUI attorney to achieve this result.
How to Get Your DUI Charges Reduced to Reckless Driving in Virginia
There is no provision in the DUI laws in our state for reducing DUI charges to reckless driving. However, your lawyer may be able to convince the prosecutor to reduce the charges to reckless driving through a plea bargain.
You need strong defenses to the charges you face for the prosecutor to agree to reduce the charges against you. In addition, having these circumstances would make it easier to obtain this plea agreement:
- No criminal history. If you have never been convicted of a crime, it is more likely that the prosecutor would reduce the charges.
- Lower BAC. You can be charged with DUI if your blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.08 percent or higher or if you are driving under the influence of alcohol. Having a BAC of 0.08 percent or less increases the chances of getting the DUI charges reduced to reckless driving.
- Driving record. If your driving record is otherwise clean, this will help you reach a favorable plea bargain in your case.
- Cooperation with the police. If you cooperated with the police and were respectful during your arrest, this would be a factor in your favor when requesting a plea agreement with the prosecutor.
- No accident. You are much less likely to get the charges against you reduced if you caused a collision when you were arrested for DUI. This is especially true if the accident caused victims to suffer injuries or property damages.
Benefits of Having DUI Charges Reduced to Reckless Driving
Both reckless driving and DUI are Class 1 misdemeanor offenses in Virginia. However, there are many benefits to being sentenced to reckless driving rather than DUI. They include the following:
- Less severe sentence
- Shorter driver’s license suspension
- No requirement to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle
- Not as high increases in your auto insurance premiums
- No enhanced punishments if you are charged with a second DUI
Have you been charged with DUI in Virginia? Order our free book, The Virginia DUI/DWI Survival Guide, to learn about possible defenses and what to expect in your criminal case. Then call our Manassas office at 888-DUI-LWYR or fill out our convenient online form to schedule your free initial consultation today with our knowledgeable DUI attorneys.