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The Wilson Law Firm

An Educated Client is the Best Client - Get Your Virginia DUI Questions Answered Here

Many people who have been cited for reckless driving or arrested for drunk driving in Virginia have common questions, and our Manassas DUI defense lawyers developed this section on our website to educate, inform and help you through this difficult time. When you are facing a challenging case, look for your answers here. If you cannot locate the answer to your specific question, please give us a call, and our qualified Northern Virginia criminal defense attorneys will answer your legal questions.

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  • This is the first time I’ve ever had to hire a lawyer. Do you have any tips for working effectively with an attorney?

    Client Having a First Meeting With a Reckless Driving AttorneyYou aren’t alone. Some of our clients come to us never having hired an attorney for anything before. Other people come to us having only dealt with attorneys in civil cases such as motor vehicle accidents, family law situations like a divorce, or estate planning purposes when they needed to draft a will.

    How to Work With a Criminal Defense Lawyer

    Now, your situation is different. You face criminal charges for reckless driving, may face jail time, and other significant legal penalties.

    An experienced reckless driving defense lawyer can protect your rights and help you navigate the court system after you have been charged with reckless driving. You can help your lawyer do his job by:

    • Being honest. Your lawyer needs to know exactly what happened right before the police officer pulled you over and when the police officer pulled you over. Some of the facts of your case may not be beneficial to your case. That’s okay. It is better for your lawyer to know them up front than to try to deal with them for the first time when the prosecution raises them.

    • Being a good communicator. It is important to share all of the information that you have with your lawyer and to return your lawyer’s calls. Your lawyer needs information from you in a timely way to defend you.

    • Being realistic. Your lawyer can’t change the facts of your case, but can work within the confines of the law to make sure that you are treated fairly after a reckless driving arrest.

    Don’t waste any time contacting a reckless driving defense lawyer. The sooner you contact a lawyer, the sooner your lawyer can get to work defending you. For more information about how a reckless driving defense lawyer can help you or to schedule your first meeting with Attorney T. Kevin Wilson, please call us or reach out to us via this website as soon as possible.

     

  • Can I prepay a reckless driving summons?

    Driver Receiving a Reckless Driving Ticket in VirginiaThere are some traffic offenses that you can prepay. For these non-criminal offenses, you may simply pay a fine and move on with your life.

    Reckless driving is not one of these offenses. Reckless driving is a crime, and you can’t prepay a fine to make the situation go away.

    When the officer hands you a piece of paper after you are pulled over for reckless driving, you are not getting get a ticket. Instead, you are receiving a summons. This summons describes the charges against you and requires you to appear in court to defend yourself against the charges.

    Defend Yourself If You’re Charged With Reckless Driving

    You likely wanted to prepay your reckless driving ticket so that you could put this matter behind you. Since that is not an option, you will have to defend yourself in court and prevent the prosecution from proving that you were driving recklessly in violation of Virginia law.

    An experienced reckless driving lawyer can analyze the evidence against you and identify the right defenses in your case. Your attorney can then use this information to negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecution or to represent you before the court.

    The potential consequences of distracted driving are significant. You may face jail time, fines, a reversal of your security clearance, and trouble finding a job. However, these consequences are not inevitable. You may be able to fight them. It may take longer than simply sending in a check to pay for a traffic infraction, but it does not have to be more stressful if you work with the right attorney who understands this area of the law and who will aggressively defend you against the charges you face.

    Attorney T. Kevin Wilson has the experience and training that you need if you face reckless driving criminal charges in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Contact him today through our online contact form or by phone to schedule a free consultation and to learn more about how you can resolve these charges against you.

     

  • How do I know if I can trust you to represent me in a Virginia reckless driving case?

    Trust Knob Turned to HighYou face criminal charges that could impact your life for a long time. In Virginia, a reckless driving conviction could result in a prison sentence, a fine, a revocation of your security clearance, a license suspension, and other serious consequences.

    You need a lawyer you can trust to fight hard for you.

    Get to Know Our Reckless Driving Firm

    Before you trust us with your reckless driving criminal defense work, we want you to get to know us better. We want you to have all of the information that you need to decide whether you can trust us with the critical job of defending your rights in court. It is important to hire a reckless driving defense lawyer quickly, but before you do so, we encourage you to:

    • Read our client testimonials. Here, our clients share their thoughts about The Wilson Law Firm and Attorney T. Kevin Wilson with you.

    • Browse our reckless driving articles. You can learn more about how we handle reckless driving cases by browsing our reckless driving library articles, blog posts, and FAQs. You can also browse our reckless driving defense case results to see how we’ve helped other people charged with this crime in Virginia.

    • Schedule a free consultation. Meet with us face to face. Ask us any questions that you have about us or your reckless driving defense and decide for yourself whether Attorney T. Kevin Wilson is someone you trust to represent you in your reckless driving defense case.

    Hiring a reckless driving defense lawyer may be the most important decision that you make after a reckless driving arrest. Do not waste any time in finding out more about us. Instead, call us, start a live chat with us, or fill out our online contact form today to start learning more about us and about whether you trust us to protect your rights in a reckless driving case.

     

  • What happens if I’m arrested for reckless driving in Virginia while I’m on probation for another crime?

    Reckless Driving SignThis isn’t the first time that you’ve been accused of committing a crime in Virginia. You are currently on probation as a sentence for another crime. As you well know by now, there are specific terms related to your probation. One of those terms likely prevents you from committing a crime. An arrest—even before you are convicted—may violate the terms of your probation.

    Probation Violation Is a Serious Legal Matter

    If you are accused of a reckless driving crime while you are on probation in Virginia then you have two legal problems:

    • You face potential probation revocation. This may mean that you need to serve jail time or another sentence imposed by the court for the crime for which you are currently serving probation.

    • You face potential legal consequences related to the reckless driving charges pending against you. This may include jail time, fines, and other penalties.

    If you are found to have violated the terms of your probation agreement and if you are found to be guilty of reckless driving then you may have to serve both sentences consecutively, and you may lose your freedom for a long time.

    You Need a Criminal Defense Lawyer Now

    You have not received a speeding ticket. Instead, you have been charged with a crime, and you face all of the potential penalties that come with a criminal conviction.

    Your future is not something that you can leave to chance. Instead, you need to work with an experienced reckless driving defense attorney who knows what evidence to gather, what questions to ask, and what arguments to make to protect your rights in accordance with Virginia law.

    Do not suffer more significant penalties than necessary. Instead, talk to Attorney T. Kevin Wilson about how you can minimize any jail time, fines, or license suspension. Contact the Wilson Law Firm today to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation and to discuss your next moves.

     

  • What is a highway?

    An Empty HighwayThe Virginia reckless driving speeding statute provides, in part, that, “A person shall be guilty of reckless driving who drives a motor vehicle on the highways in the Commonwealth…” If you were speeding, but you were not on a highway, then the Commonwealth of Virginia may not have a case against you.

    Highway May Not Mean What You Think it Means

    We all have an idea of what a highway is in our heads. To many of us, the term highway means a major road often with entrance and exit ramps and without frequent stop signs, intersections, or traffic lights.

    However, that is not what the term means when it is used in the reckless driving statute. According to 46.2-100 of the Virginia Code “"Highway" means the entire width between the boundary lines of every way or place open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel in the Commonwealth, including the streets and alleys, and, for law-enforcement purposes, (i) the entire width between the boundary lines of all private roads or private streets that have been specifically designated "highways" by an ordinance adopted by the governing body of the county, city, or town in which such private roads or streets are located and (ii) the entire width between the boundary lines of every way or place used for purposes of vehicular travel on any property owned, leased, or controlled by the United States government and located in the Commonwealth.”

    The Definition of Highway Can Be Important to Your Defense

    While most public roads are highways, there may be situations when you are accused of reckless driving, and you were not on a highway. This could happen, for example, if you are accused of reckless driving in a privately-owned parking lot.

    An experienced reckless driving defense lawyer will look closely at every aspect of your case and identify all of the potential defenses. This includes whether your alleged reckless driving technically took place on a highway or private property. To learn more about all of your possible defenses after a reckless driving arrest, please contact our the Wilson Law Firm today for a free and confidential consultation.

     

  • I’m innocent! Why won’t you promise me an acquittal in my reckless driving case?

    An Attorney Shaking a Client's HandWe understand your question, and we assure you that the reason why won’t make this promise has nothing to do with whether or not we believe you.

    Instead, the reason why we can’t promise you an acquittal, a dismissal of your case, or any other legal outcome is because it would be unethical, unprofessional, and unfair to do so.

    Many Factors Influence the Outcome of Reckless Driving Cases

    How your case will be decided depends in part on whether or not you committed the crime of reckless driving. In a perfect world, that would be all that the outcome of your case would depend upon. However, this is not a perfect world and the outcome of your case will also depend on other factors such as:

    • The quality of the evidence against you.

    • The quality of the defense that you provide.

    • How aggressive the prosecutors choose to be in your case.

    You can’t control all of these factors. However, you can control the quality of your legal defense by hiring an experienced reckless driving defense lawyer.

    What I Will Promise You If I’m Your Reckless Driving Defense Attorney

    While I can’t promise you that your case will end in a certain way, I absolutely promise you that:

    • I will listen to everything that you say.

    • I will thoroughly investigate the case.

    • I will go above and beyond the call of duty to provide you with an excellent defense.

    • I will communicate with you so that you are well-informed about what is going on in your case.

    • I will advise you of all of your legal options and help you make informed decisions.

    To learn more about how I can help you after a reckless driving arrest, please contact The Wilson Law firm today for a free and confidential consultation. You can reach me by phone or through this website at your convenience.

     

  • What does it mean when you say that you are an experienced reckless driving attorney and why is it important to me?

    Law Books, Scales of Justice, and Wooden Gavel on a Lawyers Bookshelf Experienced attorney is a term that is thrown around a lot. Many lawyers promote themselves as experienced attorneys, and most of those lawyers define “experienced” in different ways.

    This Is What Attorney T. Kevin Wilson Means by Experienced

    Since there is no universal definition of experienced when it comes to lawyers, we want there to be no confusion over what we mean when we refer to Attorney T. Kevin Wilson as an experienced reckless driving lawyer. For Mr. Wilson, experienced means:

    • More than 20 years of criminal defense work.

    • Owning and operating his own criminal defense law firm since January 1, 1999.

    • Specific training on the use of police Lidar and Radar.

    • Teaching Virginia Criminal Law, Virginia Criminal Procedure, and related topics to police officers at the Prince William County Criminal Justice Academy for more than 10 years.

    • Representing clients in more than 70 jurisdictions throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia.

    Experience means more than a resume, however. It also means:

    • Using the knowledge gained from representing prior clients.

    • Developing a reputation in the legal field.

    • Gaining a deeper understanding not only of the law, but also of the prosecutors and judges that may be involved in various cases.

    Most importantly, it means being able to provide confident and reliable legal services to individual clients.

    Working With an Experienced Reckless Driving Lawyer May Benefit Your Case

    Everyone at the Wilson Law Firm is committed to working tirelessly on behalf of our clients. We will use all of our experience and our passion for justice to see that you are treated fairly. To learn more about us and about how we may be able to help you with your reckless driving speeding case, please contact us directly via this website or by phone to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation today. We also invite you to learn more about your particular claim by browsing our free library articles, blogs, and answers to frequently asked questions.

     

  • What does nolle prosequi mean in a Virginia reckless driving case?

    Wooden Gavel Used in a Nolle Prosequi Case“Nolle prosequi” (also referred to as “null prosse”) is a Latin phrase that is often translated as “will no longer prosecute” or “not prosecute.” 

    Typically, the prosecutor will request a nolle prosequi to the court if the prosecutor believes that there is insufficient evidence for a conviction, if a witness is unavailable, or if the case should be dismissed, but the government wants to appear to be fighting every reckless driving charge aggressively.

    If the court grants the prosecutor’s nolle prosequi request, then the defendant who was charged with reckless driving will not face any immediate legal consequences. Technically, however, the Commonwealth of Virginia is reserving the right to bring back the case or reinstate the charges in the future. Fortunately, the government rarely brings the charges again and if the government chooses to do so then the government must act before the statute of limitations expires.

    It is important to note that a nolle prosequi is not the same as a dismissal of your case. If the charges against you are dismissed then the case against you is over and the Commonwealth cannot reinstate the charges and attempt to prosecute you for the same crime (arising from the same incident) again.

    Let a Reckless Driving Defense Lawyer Help You Get the Outcome You Deserve

    Reckless driving cases can be complicated. There are a lot of factors that could influence how the government wants to handle your case and the potential outcome of your reckless driving case—it is your future that is at stake.

    Let an experienced reckless driving defense lawyer represent you and make sure that your legal rights are protected. Contact The Wilson Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation with an experienced reckless driving defense lawyer who will take the time to explain all of your legal options to you and who will fight hard to make sure that you are treated fairly. We can help you face the future with the certainty that comes with knowing how your reckless driving case will be resolved.

     

  • Can I get a continuance in my reckless driving case?

    Red Clock Representing a Continuance in a Reckless Driving Case in VirginiaA reckless driving charge was not what you had planned. You recognize that you are going to have to defend yourself against this criminal charge, but you have a really good reason for not going to court on the day that your case is currently scheduled.

    However, simply failing to respond to your summons by not showing up in court on the appointed day could make the situation worse. As you face jail time, financial fines, and a potentially permanent criminal record, you need to do everything in your power to protect your legal rights.

    Delay Your Reckless Driving Court Date If Necessary

    The Virginia court system recognizes that you might have a good reason for needing to reschedule your court date. You could, for example, be:

    • Receiving medical care that makes your attendance in court very difficult.

    • In the process of hiring a reckless driving defense attorney.

    • In the military.

    • In a situation where a key witness for your case is unable to attend the court date for a good reason.

    If one of these reasons, or another good reason, exists then you or your attorney may ask the court for a continuance in your Virginia reckless driving case.

    A Continuance Won’t Delay Your Reckless Driving Case Forever

    Instead, if the court grants your motion to continue then your case will be delayed to a future date when the officer who charged you with reckless driving is scheduled to appear in court. This may delay your case for a few weeks or months depending on the reason for your continuance and the police officer’s court schedule.

    As with anything having to do with your reckless driving charge, it is important to consult with an experienced reckless driving lawyer as soon as possible. Let your attorney know the reasons why you are seeking a continuance. Your lawyer will let you know whether you should pursue a continuance. If your lawyer thinks that you should pursue a continuance, then he will draft the motion to continue and present it to the court.

    To learn more about this, or about any aspect of your reckless driving case in Virginia, please contact The Wilson Law Firm today via this website or by phone. We would be happy to provide you with a free, no-obligation consultation.

     

  • How long can my insurance premiums go up for if I’m convicted of reckless driving in Virginia?

    Increasing Car Insurance Rates After a Reckless Driving ConvictionYou have a lot to worry about after a Virginia reckless driving conviction. You may have to serve jail time, pay a fine, and face a license suspension. Your car insurance may not be your primary concern. However, it is something that you need to think about.

    Good News and Bad News About Car Insurance After a Reckless Driving Conviction

    First, let’s talk about the good news. Virginia insurance law specifically provides that, “No insurer shall use any information pertaining to any motor vehicle conviction or accident to produce increased or surcharged rates above their filed manual rates for individual risks for a period longer than 36 months. This period shall begin no later than 12 months after the date of the conviction or accident.” In other words, a car insurance company can only increase your premium for a three-year period after your conviction.

    Next, let’s consider the potential cost. Over those three years, your car insurance may go up by more than 200 percent. The insurance company may consider your reckless driving conviction, previous driving record, age, and other factors to determine the specific amount that your premium will increase. However, an insurance increase after a reckless driving conviction may not always happen and can vary from insurance company to insurance company.

    The Best Way to Avoid Reckless Driving Penalties Is to Avoid a Conviction

    It is easier to try to avoid a conviction before it happens than it is to undo the consequences of that conviction later. If you have been accused of reckless driving, then it is important to talk to an experienced reckless driving defense attorney as soon as possible about your rights. The cost of hiring a lawyer may be much less than the potential financial and emotional costs of a reckless driving conviction.

    Please call The Wilson Law Firm today to learn more about what you can do to protect yourself from the potential consequences of a reckless driving conviction. We would be pleased to provide you with a free consultation so that you can make an informed decision about your future.

     

  • Who enforces reckless driving laws in Virginia?

    Local Police Pulling Over a Car for Reckless DrivingBoth local and state police can enforce reckless driving laws in Virginia. Typically, the authority of the local police is limited to the jurisdiction of that police force. For example, an officer from the Manassas Police Department has the authority to charge you with reckless driving within the City of Manassas, an officer from the Prince William County Police Department has the authority to charge you with reckless driving within Prince William County, and an officer with the Virginia State Police can charge you with reckless driving in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

    Take All Reckless Driving Charges Seriously

    Whether your ticket was issued by a local police officer, a county police officer, or a state trooper, you are facing criminal charges in Virginia and the procedures for protecting your rights are the same.

    The piece of paper that you were given when the officer pulled you over is not a ticket. It is a summons, and it will tell you the date, time, and specific courthouse where you are to report to address the charges against you.

    The crime that you face is likely a Class 1 misdemeanor—which is the most serious type of misdemeanor in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The consequences for being convicted of Class 1 misdemeanor include possible:

    • Jail time

    • Fines

    • License suspension

    • Demerit points on your driving record

    • A permanent criminal record

    • An increase in insurance premiums

    • A loss of security clearance

    Other consequences are also possible.

    However, reckless driving consequences are not always inevitable once you are charged with the crime. An experienced reckless driving lawyer can investigate the facts of your case and present any valid defenses so that you do not have to bear the burden of penalties for a crime that you did not commit.

    To learn more about your rights and your potential defenses, please schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with The Wilson Law Firm today. We can be reached by phone or via this website at your convenience.

     

  • What kind of lawyer do I need if I get a ticket for passing a stopped school bus in Virginia?

    Section §46.2-859 of the Virginia Code makes it a crime to pass “…any school bus which is stopped on any highway, private road, or school driveway for the purpose of taking on or discharging children, the elderly, or mentally or physically handicapped persons,…” Specifically, Virginia law says that anyone who is guilty of passing a stopped school bus in this way is guilty of reckless driving.

    You Need a Reckless Driving Defense Lawyer

    If you have been accused of passing a stopped school bus, then you have been accused of a crime and you need a criminal defense lawyer with experience defending drivers who have been accused of reckless driving.

    You have not been given a traffic ticket and the penalties you face are not purely financial. In addition to a fine, you may face potential jail time, demerit points on your driver’s A Small Child Getting on a School Bus in Virginia license, suspension of your driver’s license, increased insurance premiums, and other serious consequences. If you are convicted then your criminal record may be permanent.

    For these reasons, it is important to hire an attorney who has experience with reckless driving criminal defense cases. An attorney who handled your speeding ticket, parking violation, or another civil matter may not be the best choice for handling your criminal case.

    For more than two decades, Attorney T. Kevin Wilson has been representing people in criminal traffic-related cases. He knows what questions to ask, what evidence to gather, what arguments to make, and what advice to give each individual client who faces a traffic-related crime.

    If you would like to learn more about the charges you face, the potential consequences of these charges, and the steps that you can take to protect your recovery, then please contact The Wilson Law Firm today to schedule your free, confidential, no-obligation consultation with an experienced reckless driving defense lawyer. We would be happy to discuss any potential defenses to the crime of passing a stopped school bus and how best to protect your future.

     

  • I’m so embarrassed by my reckless driving arrest. Who is going to know about this?

    A Woman Reading a Newspaper About Reckless Driving ChargesIt depends. People can find out about your reckless driving arrest in different ways. While you can’t prevent everyone from knowing about your arrest, it is helpful to understand how people may learn about it so that you can control the situation to the best of your ability.

    Different Ways to Learn About a Reckless Driving Arrest

    Someone can learn about a reckless driving arrest by:

    • Reading the newspaper. While your arrest is unlikely to make the nightly news unless you were in a major accident, the local paper could have a list of arrests and traffic tickets. If you are over the age of 18 your name may be printed along with the date and time of your arrest and the specific charges that you face.

    • Asking you directly on a job application. A future employer may ask about your criminal past on a job application. Read the question carefully and answer it honestly. Many applications ask about criminal convictions and not about arrests. If you were acquitted or the charges against you were dropped, then you were not convicted of reckless driving.

    • Conducting a background check. It is possible that a reckless driving conviction could show up in a security check or a background check run by an employer.

    Additionally, people may find out about your arrest by word of mouth. If one person read about it in the paper or saw you get pulled over they may tell other people.

    Be Honest About Your Reckless Driving Arrest

    It might not be easy, but it is almost always better to be honest about your reckless driving arrest than it is to lie about the situation. If you lie and you are caught in that lie, then your integrity will be questioned along with your driving ability.

    That said, it can be very difficult to be judged for your driving ability and you may be very uncomfortable with your reckless driving arrest. While we can’t promise you that everyone will understand the circumstances that led to your arrest, we can promise you that we will not judge you based on your arrest. Instead, we will work hard to see that the law is fairly applied to you and that you don’t suffer greater legal consequences than you deserve.

    To learn more, please join us for an initial, judgment-free meeting to learn about your rights and about how to protect them. Call us or contact us via this website to schedule your meeting today.

     

  • I was in an accident and the other person is claiming that I was driving recklessly. Does this mean that I’m facing criminal charges?

    Virginia Police Officer Writing a Reckless Driving TicketReckless driving is a crime in Virginia. However, another citizen cannot charge you with a crime. If you face criminal charges for reckless driving, then those charges will come from the Commonwealth of Virginia.

    How to Know If You Face Criminal Reckless Driving Charges

    You may not be read your Miranda rights or be taken into police custody if you are charged with reckless driving. Instead, you may be given a reckless driving summons that looks like a ticket.

    It is important to read the ticket carefully. Do not assume that you have been given a common speeding ticket or traffic violation ticket. Instead, look at the “charges” section of the ticket. If you see the letters RD then the officer issuing your ticket has charged you with reckless driving. You should also look at the speed the officer recorded on the ticket. If the officer claims that you were traveling over 80 mph or 20 mph or more over the posted speed limit, then you may have been charged with reckless driving.

    What to Do If You Face Criminal Reckless Driving Charges

    Another person involved in the crash may claim that you were driving recklessly and may raise that issue during a civil personal injury car accident case. That does not mean that you have been charged with the crime of reckless driving.

    If the ticket or summons that you were given at the accident scene indicates reckless driving or if you are confused about whether or not you have been charged with reckless driving then it is important to contact an experienced reckless driving lawyer as soon as possible.

    Our lawyers understand the serious charge that you face and the significant impact that it can have on your life. We will fight hard to protect your rights and to get you the best possible outcome given the facts of your case. Please contact us today via this website or by phone to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation. During our meeting, you can learn more about how to defend yourself against criminal reckless driving charges and about how we can help you during this difficult time.

     

  • I was arrested for reckless driving after a car crash in Virginia. The driver of the other car died. Will I face other legal problems?

    Involuntary Manslaughter and Wrongful Death Charges May Be Possible After a Reckless Driving DeathIt is possible that you will face additional criminal charges or that the survivors of the other driver will file a wrongful death lawsuit naming you as a defendant after a fatal reckless driving accident. However, whether you will be convicted of another crime or held accountable in a civil lawsuit depends on whether the state or the survivors can prove their cases in court.

    Aggravated Involuntary Manslaughter Charges and a Wrongful Death Case Are Possible

    You will not necessarily face involuntary manslaughter charges or be named as a wrongful death defendant. However, if:

    • The Commonwealth of Virginia brings aggravated involuntary manslaughter charges then the prosecutors must prove that you were so gross, wanton, and culpable as to show a reckless disregard for human life. If the prosecutors are successful, then you face not less than one and not more than 20 years in prison.

    • The survivors bring a civil wrongful death case then they must prove that you owed the other driver a duty of care, that you breached the duty of care by failing to act like a reasonable person, that your breach of the duty of care caused the driver’s death, and that the survivors are legally entitled to damages. If the plaintiffs are successful in their claim, then you may owe them financial damages.

    Don’t Forget About the Reckless Driving Charges Against You

    You may not yet know if you face aggravated involuntary manslaughter charges or if you will face a civil wrongful death lawsuit. However, you do know that you have been charged with the crime of reckless driving and that you need to defend yourself against those charges because you face potential jail time and other significant penalties. For more information about how to defend yourself against reckless driving charges, please contact our experienced reckless driving criminal defense lawyers today for a free, no-obligation consultation about your rights.

     

  • Does everyone who is convicted of reckless driving in Virginia receive the same sentence?

    There Are Many Factors That Play a Part in a Reckless Driving SentencingNo. While Virginia law establishes maximum penalties for reckless driving, the actual sentence that an individual receives for the crime of reckless driving is dependent on numerous factors.

    Possible Penalties for Reckless Driving in Virginia

    The potential penalties for a reckless driving conviction depend on whether you are convicted of a class 1 misdemeanor or a class 6 felony. For either offense, you face jail time, a fine, and a suspended driver’s license. The very first time you are convicted, for example, you could face jail time of up to 12 months, a fine of up to $2,500, and a license suspension of up to two years.

    Factors That Influence Virginia Reckless Driving Sentences

    While Virginia law provides a maximum sentence for your reckless driving conviction, you may not face the same consequences as other drivers who are convicted of reckless driving. Some of the things that could impact your individual sentence include:

    • Whether you have any prior convictions. This could mean that the judge is likely to be lenient in your sentence.

    • Your driving history. Similar to prior convictions, the court may be less likely to be lenient if you have a poor driving history.

    • The reason for your reckless driving arrest. Reckless driving speeding, passing a stopped school bus, or drag racing, for example, could result in different sentences.

    • The county in which your reckless driving case is heard. Some counties have reputations for being harsher with reckless driving sentences than others.

    • The individual judge presiding over your reckless driving case. Some individual judges have reputations for being harsher with reckless driving sentences than others.

    • The attorney who is representing you in your reckless driving case. Some lawyers are more effective than others in reckless driving defense cases.

    To learn more about how to protect your rights if you have been charged with reckless driving, please contact The Wilson Law Firm today. Let an experienced reckless driving lawyer help you through the process so that your chances of an unfair sentence are reduced.

     

  • My friend was arrested for reckless driving. I was a passenger in the car at the time of the arrest. What should I do?

    There Are Steps You Can Take When You Are a Passenger in a Car With a Reckless DriverThis can be a scary situation, but you are in an important position to help the court understand what truly happened in the moments leading up to your friend’s reckless driving arrest and to make sure that your friend’s legal rights are protected.

    Three Things You Can Do If You Were a Passenger at the Time of a Reckless Driving Arrest

    You have not been charged with a crime, but your role as a reckless driving witness is an important one. After the driver of the vehicle has been arrested for reckless driving, you can:

    • Tell the truth. No matter how much you want to help your friend, you can only help your friend by telling the truth about what happened. If you do not tell the truth, then you risk making your friend’s defense more complicated and creating legal trouble for yourself.

    • Encourage your friend to share your contact information with his attorney. You may have valuable information to share with the lawyer that could make a big difference in your friend’s defense.

    • Help your friend find a lawyer if he doesn’t already have one. Make sure that your friend understands why a reckless driving defense lawyer is so important. Your friend has not been accused of speeding or a simple traffic offense. Instead, your friend has been charged with a crime. You can get to know our reckless driving defense lawyers, and others, by searching the internet and checking out client testimonials.

    Additionally, it is important to be a good friend. Be there to listen to your friend during this difficult time and to offer the moral support that you always offer. The process from a reckless driving arrest through the resolution of a reckless driving case can be stressful. Your loved one may be worried about money, about his job, about his family, or about the effect of a conviction on his immigration status. You can be there to support your friend through it all—and hopefully to celebrate when your friend’s case is over.

     

  • How can a lawyer help me if I face jail time for reckless driving in Virginia?

    What to Expect If You Are Facing Jail Time After a Reckless Driving ChargeA lawyer can help you minimize the criminal consequences of a reckless driving charge. If you are convicted of reckless driving in Virginia then the judge may sentence you to time in jail. However, that doesn’t mean that you will definitely go to jail or that you will be unable to prepare for any jail time you are required to serve.

    Reckless Driving Is at Least a Class 1 Misdemeanor in Virginia

    According to Virginia law, any instance of reckless driving is a Class 1 misdemeanor and a Class 1 misdemeanor carries a potential sentence of up to 12 months in jail. In some cases, such as reckless driving without a valid license or reckless driving that results in a death, the crime of reckless driving may be classified as a Class 6 felony. A Class 6 felony carries a potential sentence of up to five years in jail.

    Protect Your Rights If You Face Jail Time for Reckless Driving in Virginia

    An experienced lawyer can help you protect your rights if you have been arrested for jail time. Specifically, a lawyer may:

    • Defend you against the criminal charges you face. While no ethical lawyer can promise you an acquittal, our lawyers are proud to work hard to protect the rights of each and every client whom we represent. We will use the available evidence to try to avoid a conviction for you which will mean that you avoid jail time.

    • Argue for a reduced sentence. If a conviction is likely then your lawyer will fight to reduce your jail time as much as possible.

    • Advocate for a suspended sentence. If you receive a suspended sentence then you will not go to jail as long as you do everything that the court asks you to do.

    • Request a delayed reporting if you are sentenced to jail time. This will allow you to get your affairs in order before going to jail. In some cases, you may be able to appeal your conviction.

    Jail time is a possibility after a reckless driving charge, but it is not a foregone conclusion. Accordingly, we encourage you to contact The Wilson Law Firm today to discuss your legal rights and to find out how we may be able to help you during this difficult time. Please reach out to us via this website or by phone today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation and to learn more about what you can do in light of the reckless driving charges you face.

     

  • Can an ambulance driver be charged with reckless driving in Virginia?

    What You Should Know About Reckless Driving and Ambulance DriversYes, an ambulance driver may be charged with reckless driving in Virginia. However, what is considered to be reckless driving may depend on whether or not the ambulance was operating in an emergency situation at the time.

    Reckless Driving Charges Against an Ambulance Driver During an Emergency

    When an ambulance driver is on the way to get to someone who is facing a medical emergency or is transporting that person to the hospital, then the ambulance driver has the right to exceed the speed limit and to drive in a way that might otherwise be considered reckless driving.

    Of course, that right is not unlimited. According to Virginia law (§46.2-920), the driver of an emergency vehicle who is using the vehicle to perform a public service in an emergency situation may do the following without being criminally prosecuted:

    • Disregard speed limits.

    • Proceed through a traffic signal or stop sign without stopping but with a reduced speed.

    • Disregard regulations about which way a vehicle can turn.

    • Pass another vehicle at an intersection.

    • Pass a stopped or slow-moving vehicle.

    At all times, however, the ambulance driver must have due regard for public safety. These exemptions only apply when the ambulance is using its lights and sirens.

    An Ambulance Driver May Not Break Reckless Driving Laws in Non-Emergency Situations

    When the ambulance driver is not working in an emergency situation, then all of Virginia’s reckless driving laws apply just as they would to the driver of any other vehicle.

    If you are an ambulance driver and you have been charged with reckless driving, then it is important to talk to an experienced reckless driving lawyer as soon as possible. You may be found guilty of reckless driving and that could have a significant impact on your employment and your future.

    To learn more, please contact The Wilson Law Firm directly to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation and to learn more about your rights and protecting your future.

     

  • What kinds of witnesses are important in a reckless driving case?

    Witnesses may play a very important role in your defense if you have been accused of reckless driving. Both eyewitnesses and expert witnesses may be able to help you defend yourself against the Commonwealth of Virginia’s reckless driving charges, but first you must know what each type of witness can offer and whether they are important to your individual defense case.

    Eyewitnesses in a Reckless Driving Case

    A person who witnessed your driving at the time you were accused of reckless driving may be useful in your defense. How an eyewitness can help depends on the exact nature of the charge against you and on what the witness saw. For example, if you are accused of passing a stopped school bus or failing to give proper signals, and the witness saw otherwise, then that information could be useful to your defense.

    Expert Witnesses in a Reckless Driving Case

    As with eyewitnesses, the way that an expert witness may be able to help you depends on the type of reckless driving with which you were charged. If you were charged with reckless driving speeding, for example, then a qualified witness may be able to testify about any issues with the police officer’s speed detection equipment or the officer’s use of such equipment. In some cases, accident reconstructionists or other experts may also be helpful to your defense.

    A Reckless Driving Lawyer Can Help You Identify the Right Witnesses for Your Case

    Not all reckless driving defense cases have eyewitnesses, and not all reckless driving defense cases require expert witnesses. However, when an eyewitness is available or an expert witnessWitnesses: Knowing the Right Ones for Your Case can be useful, then you want to make sure that consider using these witnesses in your reckless driving defense case.

    The decision about whether to use witnesses in your defense can be a complicated one. Many factors should be weighed, including:

    • The usefulness of the witness’s testimony.

    • The cost of the expert witness.

    • Whether the witness is reliable.

    The experienced reckless driving defense lawyers at The Wilson Law Firm can help you weigh these factors and make the decision that is right for your case. Call us today for a free and confidential consultation about your rights and to find out more about defending yourself against charges of reckless driving in Virginia.

     

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