Reckless driving is a serious traffic offense that is defined by state law. Typically, reckless driving includes a moving traffic violation that occurred because of the driver's wanton disregard for the traffic laws. It is more significant than finding that a driver was inattentive or negligent. For example, a reckless driving charge may include traveling at a speed significantly over the speed limit, dangerous passing, driving without proper brakes, failing to yield to emergency vehicles and other perilous driving practices.
Reckless driving is a crime in many states and may be considered a felony or a misdemeanor depending on state laws. Accordingly, the potential legal penalties for reckless driving vary but generally include fines, imprisonment, loss of license and other significant penalties and insurance points. Reckless driving laws can be obtained from your state DMV. Reckless driving penalties can remain on your driving record for more than 10 years in some states and a reckless driving conviction can result in a permanent criminal record. Therefore, it is important to understand what constitutes reckless driving before you get behind the wheel and to seek legal assistance if you have been charged with reckless driving.
Reckless driving can have significant and expensive consequences for your motor vehicle insurance. In some states, just a few points on your license can double your motor vehicle insurance costs. Your insurance can even be cancelled leaving you unable to legally operate a motor vehicle and effectively revoking your driving privileges.
The potential legal penalties and reckless driving insurance consequences are severe but they are not inevitable. As with all other crimes, you are innocent of reckless driving until you have been proven guilty. Your lawyer will study the circumstances of the accident and present your defenses. In many cases the charge of reckless driving can be reduced or eliminated and you can avoid the serious criminal penalties, the permanent criminal conviction and the expensive reckless driving insurance premiums that you would otherwise face.
In order for a lawyer to help you it is important to contact a lawyer before you plead guilty to a reckless driving charge. Your lawyer may be able to defend you against the reckless driving claims without you ever having to go to court and you may be able to avoid the harsh consequences for the reckless driving claims for which you have been charged.