Unlike in other states, reckless driving in Virginia is a criminal misdemeanor that can result in jail time, fines, and license suspension. For this reason, if you have been charged with reckless driving as an out of state driver it is important to understand what exactly you are facing and how it can impact you in your home state.
The following are frequently asked questions by those accused of reckless driving in Virginia as out of state drivers. To learn more about these charges or discuss specifics, call today and schedule a consultation with a Loudoun County reckless driving lawyer.
Depending on the law of your home state, a Loudoun County reckless driving charge may have great consequences for your out-of-state license. Some states have reciprocity with Virginia for similar offenses and will issue points and potential license suspension simply because you were found guilty of a reckless driving offense. You want to check out your home state’s Department of Motor Vehicles home page to find out what types of penalties they have for out of state convictions. Oftentimes, you need to a call to an actual person in your home state as the information may not be readily available online. In certain instances, your Virginia attorney will contact a colleague in another state and determine the best course of action to preserve your out of state and home state license.
In most cases, for a charge of reckless driving, you will need to show up in court. There are, however, certain offenses under which a Loudoun County reckless driving lawyer may appear on your behalf. If you do not show up or if you do not have an attorney appear, then you will be found guilty in your absence and potential serious penalties could be assessed. However, if your reckless driving offense is not extremely serious and counsel advises you that they can appear on your behalf, you execute an authorization to allow them to do so it may not be necessary for you to appear. This is the most common in the case of persons who are charged with reckless driving in Loudoun County but actually reside in other states, other countries, or are in the military. Simply residing locally and not wanting to leave work is typically not a good excuse for not appearing in court and most attorneys would advise against that.
Prosecutors in Loudoun County treat reckless driving cases very seriously. The Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorneys that handle these cases on a regular basis see them quite often and are very keen to the statutory violations and driving behavior that may encompass reckless driving. However, this does not necessarily mean that they will simply offer to reduce all cases or that they will never make favorable agreements. They do a great job of investigating the cases by speaking with the officers, consider the arguments made by the defense attorney, as well as consider any evidence presented by the defense attorney when discussing whether or not the resolution is proper.
There is no set formula in Loudoun County for when a case is reduced or when a case is not reduced by a prosecutor, but the prosecutors do use their sound discretion and their training to decide when offers are appropriate and when offers are not. Likewise, judges are not required to negotiate with defendants to resolve cases and they reserve the right to do so on an individual basis. So if you’re charged of reckless driving in Virginia, it is advantageous to hire experienced reckless driving defense attorney so that they can represent your interests, negotiate with Commonwealth Attorneys with whom they have a good relationship, and advise you on the best possible outcome given your unique facts.
Patrick Woolley Attorney At Law