Traffic Violation Vs. Traffic Crime
Traffic violations are categorized as either traffic infractions or crimes. Traffic infractions themselves are classified as either moving violations or nonmoving violations. Examples of moving violations include red light violations, minor speeding violations and highway sign violations. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, or DMV, always assesses demerit points on a driver’s license for a moving violation and of course, your car insurance rates can and probably will increase.
Nonmoving violations, however, such as high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) violations, having expired license plates or registration, and having illegally tinted windows, don’t result in a point assessment and usually don’t affect your car insurance rates. Either way, it’s not necessary for the state to prove intent where traffic infractions are concerned.
Traffic crimes, on the other hand, are much more severe matters. Hit-and-run accidents, reckless driving, and driving with a suspended or revoked license are all traffic crimes. Like moving violations, traffic crimes also result in demerit points being assessed, but convictions can also lead to jail sentences, fines and even suspension of your driver’s license. Your insurance premiums will almost surely be affected. You should take traffic crimes very seriously.
Your Options Following A Traffic Offense
Following a charge for a traffic infraction, you have the option of simply paying the fine and court costs, and avoiding a court appearance. However, if a traffic crime is involved, the defendant must appear in court. A driver who has accumulated too many demerit points in too short a period of time (usually a year) due to traffic infractions or traffic crimes, will be placed on driving probation by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). If he or she gets another ticket during probation, DMV will suspend his or her driver’s license 30, 45 or 90 days, depending on how many points the new ticket carries.
Insurance companies will not insure a driver whose license has been suspended, and this lapse in coverage usually results in higher premiums down the line. One of the ways a traffic tickets attorney can benefit their client is by negotiating with the prosecutor (or in some cases, the police officer or the judge) to amend the charge to one that carries fewer demerit points.
Of course, sometimes it may be more cost-effective for a driver to simply pay their fine rather than hire a Fairfax and northern Virginia traffic tickets lawyer to handle his or her case. Keep in mind, however, that points and penalties can add up to compromise your freedom and driving privileges down the line. In either case, contact a knowledgeable traffic crimes attorney today to find out more about how the law applies to your own situation and what options you may have for beating your case.
A Dedicated Traffic Crimes Attorney For Fairfax And Northern Virginia
B.R. Hicks, PC, handles all kinds of traffic violations, including but not limited to those involving:
- Reckless driving
- Failure to yield
- Failure to stop
- Driving with a suspended license
- Driving with a revoked license
- Speeding in excess of posted limits
Contact him today to schedule a free consultation with a knowledgeable traffic violations lawyer. If he doesn’t think you need to hire an attorney, he’ll let you know. He is not interested in wasting your time, or his time. If, however, he thinks you may benefit from legal representation, he’ll advise you as to how you can go about making the most of the options available to you. He has decades of experience assisting Virginia drivers in traffic violations matters, and chances are he has something to bring to the table where your own case is concerned.