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How Serious Are Reckless Driving Charges?

A reckless driving conviction could affect people in a number of ways including monetary fines, possible jail time, suspension of a person’s driving privilege and probation. There are a number of other consequences to be aware of as well.

Fines And License Penalties

Reckless driving charges are very serious. An individual could be sentenced to up to a year in jail or up to a $2,500 fine. Furthermore, they might also face losing their license for up to six months.

Affect On Insurance Rates

It is generally common that with a reckless driving conviction, auto insurance rates will go up and stay up for at least three years.

Affect On Commercial Driver’s License

Someone with a commercial driver’s license and who is convicted of a reckless driving charge may lose their driver’s license altogether which would obviously affect your employment.

Affect On Employment

If someone works in a place where the company’s insurance provides auto coverage for its employees, an employer might not want to carry the liability for someone with a reckless driving conviction.

Many jobs which depend on their employees being able to drive, may have a policy to terminate the person’s employment if they got convicted for reckless driving, which can have a huge impact on the person’s career. People can sometimes be unable to get jobs because of misdemeanor convictions.

Affect On Medical Insurance

Often times, medical questionnaires ask if a person has received convictions for misdemeanors. The reason they ask this is because if they were going to insure a person, they would want to know that person would be not be injured due to the driving behavior.

Affect On Immigration

I have attended immigration interviews where the government was very careful while looking at all misdemeanor convictions and even reckless driving convictions.

This by itself would not stop anyone from being admissible into a country. However, it was used by the district counsel of the Department of Homeland Security to try to prevent them from appearing as a person of good moral character.

Many parts of probation can cause people to lose immigration benefits if they did not do it properly.

Affect On Clearances

A lot of people in the Northern Virginia area have secret or top secret clearances. Although a reckless driving conviction may not stop you from getting or keeping clearance, it might hard to explain this on applications and it can actually be embarrassing.

Penalties For Minors

A minor who is convicted of reckless driving may lose their driver’s license much sooner because of the DMV. The DMV has a very low tolerance for convictions. Minors would often be penalized less although certain mandatory penalties would be applied nevertheless and they would have to pay fines.

Criminal Penalties Of A Reckless Driving Conviction

Most reckless driving charges would be a Class 1 Misdemeanor, meaning the fine could be anywhere from $0 to $2500. There could also be a jail sentence ranging from no jail all the way up to one year. Furthermore they might also lose their license for months.

A felony reckless driving charge would be up to two years in jail and the fine is up to $2500.

In Virginia, if you do lose your license from a reckless driving conviction, you can get a restricted driver’s license which would only allow you to drive to and from work, to and from school, to and from church and to and from medical appointments.

Reckless Driving Charges For Out Of State Drivers

The penalties for reckless driving are the same for out of state drivers with the exception that any part that was done by the DMV in the state of Virginia, would not necessarily be done by the home state where the person resides.

For example, someone from Pennsylvania who received a reckless driving ticket in Virginia would get the same penalties except when it came to the points on his or her license. Additionally, another difference would be if the courts in Virginia suspended a person’s driver’s license, and that person happened to be an out of state driver, then in many instances the license may not be suspended in their home state. They would still be suspended in the state of Virginia but the suspension would not affect them at all if they were not in Virginia. For a foreign state, not Virginia, to suspend someone’s license for what happened in that state would be a due process violation in many instances.

For more information on Penalties For Reckless Driving, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling (703) 691- 4366 today.

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