At the law offices of Carlson Collier, we believe in empowering you with the knowledge you need to make informed decisions. We always take the time to explain, in detail, every aspect of your case to you, as well as your options. In an effort to give you some helpful information regarding Virginia traffic violations, we offer you the following information on traffic violation law. If you have any questions regarding the following information on traffic violation law or if you have a traffic matter you would like to discuss, contact us to schedule an free consultation. Put a law firm dedicated to protecting your rights and achieving the best possible results on your side.
Whether you are in jeopardy of having your driver's licenses suspended due to drunk driving (DWI-DUI), or whether you received a DUI for underage drinking, or whether you received a traffic ticket for speeding, reckless driving, or other moving violation in Virginia, you want to contact an experienced traffic violation lawyer. At Carlson Collier we have extensive experience defending clients charged with traffic violations. Discover the difference an experienced traffic violation attorney can make in your defense.Traffic Violations - An Overview
More than ninety percent of the people in the United States over the age of sixteen are licensed to drive, and there is often more than one car registered for each licensed driver. This data translates into trillions of miles driven each year, and millions of traffic law offenses. The criminal justice system would quickly be overwhelmed if each offense required a full criminal adjudication. Accordingly, traffic law violations have been divided into three categories-felonies, misdemeanors, and infractions or violations-with the lesser offenses handled in a more informal manner.
Although many traffic offenses may not carry the same stigma and penalties as other more serious crimes, even the lower-level offenses can result in significant fines, loss of driving privileges, and increased insurance rates. And the more serious offenses, or even some less serious violations if they are part of a series of violations by the same offender, can result in imprisonment
Thus, traffic charges should not be taken lightly. Experienced traffic law attorneys can explain the possible consequences of the various violations and represent those charged with traffic offenses throughout the resolution of the matter, taking some of the mystery out of the process and increasing the chances of the least serious outcome.
Traffic Infractions or Violations
Most traffic infractions or violations are strict-liability crimes, which means that no particular criminal intent is required to convict a person of the offense. The only proof needed is evidence that the person charged actually committed the prohibited act. Strict-liability traffic offenses typically include such violations as failure to use turn signals, failure to yield, turning into the wrong lane, driving a car with burned-out headlights, failure to use towbars when towing another vehicle, parking next to a yellow curb, parking in a handicap spot without the required permit, overdue parking meters, and exceeding the speed limit. Many jurisdictions provide for administrative processing of some or all of these traffic violations, thereby removing them from criminal court altogether. In those cases, an offender may not be subject to incarceration or large fines; on the other hand, neither is he or she entitled to such protections as a court-appointed lawyer or a jury trial. The fine for speeding tickets, however, can be quite high, based on how fast the driver was going or their prior driving record. In addition, conviction of these traffic violations can have other, lasting impacts on a person's driving privileges and insurance rates.
Traffic Misdemeanors and Felonies
Almost every traffic violation becomes a misdemeanor or felony if it involves injury to a person or destruction of property. A person who changes lanes without signaling and hits another car can be charged with the misdemeanor crime of reckless driving or even vehicular homicide if the lane-changer was attempting to inflict serious bodily injury and the other driver is killed. In addition, some traffic offenses are legally defined as misdemeanors or felonies, such as driving with a revoked license and leaving the scene of an accident. A person accused of these more serious traffic offenses is entitled to all criminal procedures, including the right to a jury trial.
The primary purpose of traffic-violation laws and regulations is to deter unsafe driving and to educate and reform bad drivers. Even good drivers, however, for whom safety is a priority, can be charged with a traffic violation. If you or someone you know has been charged with breaking a traffic law, skilled criminal defense attorneys with experience in traffic law can explain the procedures and possible penalties that await you, and can work with you to ensure the best possible outcome. Contact our traffic defense lawyers toll free at 800-583-1212 or 804-270-1400 for an initial free consultation.