Unfortunately, you can be charged with reckless driving if you are driving through Virginia or are visiting our state for business or pleasure. While many reckless driving charges involve speeding, you could also be arrested for this crime for other violations, such as driving with faulty brakes, passing a stopped school bus, failing to yield the right of way, or not using your turn signals.
What You Need to Know If You Are an Out-of-State Resident Charged With Reckless Driving in Virginia
You must take the reckless driving charges you face seriously. While it may appear that you are just receiving a traffic ticket—you are being charged with a crime. Here is what you need to know:
- Misdemeanor. Reckless driving is a Class 1 misdemeanor, which is the most serious misdemeanor offense you could be charged with in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
- Harsh penalties. You could face serious penalties if you are convicted of reckless driving. You could be sentenced to up to 12 months in jail and a fine of up to $2,500. In addition, your driver’s license may be suspended for six months and you could have six points on your driving record.
- Court appearance. You cannot simply plead guilty and pay a fine. You will need to attend one or more court hearings because you are being charged with a misdemeanor offense.
- Permanent criminal record. If you are convicted of reckless driving, you will have a permanent criminal record. This could have long-term consequences in your life, such as limiting your ability to obtain a job, education, loans, and more.
- Interstate compact. Most states participate in the interstate driver’s license compact, which means that the ramifications of a Virginia reckless driving conviction would follow you to your home state. For example, you may have your driver’s license suspended and have the same six points placed on your driving record where you live.
- Attorney. It is not in your best interest to just plead guilty or try to represent yourself in your criminal case. An experienced reckless driving lawyer in Virginia can raise your defenses—which you may have even if you are guilty—and negotiate a favorable plea agreement with the prosecutor if this is in your best interest. A lawyer may also be able to appear at court hearings on your behalf so that you do not need to be present.
Are you an out-of-state resident charged with reckless driving in Virginia? Our dedicated legal team will mount an aggressive defense strategy for you and will make the process as convenient as possible. To learn more about how we can assist you and what you can expect in your criminal case, call our Manassas office to schedule a free consultation today.