Exceeding the Speed Limit: How Fast Is Reckless Driving?

Reckless driving is a serious offense with severe consequences. If convicted, you could face jail time, fines and have your driving privileges revoked.

Speeding or Reckless Driving?

Speeding is an everyday occurrence, and most of us have done it at some point. We’d be lying if we say we always drive within the posted speed limit. But when is it considered reckless driving?

If it is a mere traffic infraction, you may be given a ticket, and that’s the end of the matter. But if you are pulled over for speeding, you will be slapped with speeding charges. The law enforcement officer may check your speedometer and then charge you with reckless driving and endangering the safety of persons using the road.

A reckless driving charge is a criminal case, and your defense will determine whether you are jailed, fined, or even both.

So how fast is too fast? What are the penalties you may face for a reckless driving charge, and how do you beat the charge? This article has all the information about a reckless driving charge.

How Fast Is Considered to be Reckless Driving?

In Virginia, you can be charged with reckless driving if:

  • You are driving 20 miles/per hour or more over the speed limit; or

  • Driving over 80 miles/per hour regardless of the speed limit.

Those are the most common ways you can be charged for reckless driving. However, other circumstances can lead to your arrest and facing charges of reckless driving:

  • Drag racing

  • Driving a faulty vehicle, such as faulty brakes

  • Willful or wanton disregard of current weather conditions when driving (how can you even speed during a storm?)

Virginia has some of the strictest reckless driving laws. And yet, many motor vehicle drivers break these laws and land in trouble.

Do You Go to Jail for Reckless Driving?

Reckless driving is a misdemeanor charge. If convicted, you may spend time in jail. The maximum jail term you can expect is 12 months. However, the prosecution must prove that you were driving recklessly and putting your life and other road users’ lives or property in danger.

If the prosecution cannot prove you were driving recklessly, you can get off with just a speeding ticket. So when you are pulled over, avoid giving the police officer information that may be used against you.


What Are the Penalties for Reckless Driving?

You have been convicted of reckless driving, a Class 1 misdemeanor charge. So what penalties can you expect?

The first thing to note is that this will affect your driving record. Six points are added, and that’s not all! They remain on your DMV for eleven years. Additionally, you may end up spending 12 months in jail!

The faster you drive, the worse the penalties. So don’t be shocked if you end up in jail with your driver’s license and driving privileges revoked.

How to Beat a Reckless Driving Charge

When you are arrested for any charge, the first thing you need to do is to remain silent. Remember that your words can be used against you in court. Secondly, contact your reckless driving lawyer as soon as possible so that they can start working on your case immediately. 

So what is the duty of your reckless driving attorney?

To poke holes into the prosecution’s evidence. While the prosecution works to prove that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, your attorney needs to cast reasonable doubt on the prosecution’s evidence.

A good attorney-client relationship is essential, so don’t withhold any information from your attorney. 

You also need to work with an experienced attorney who can prove that you are innocent or have your charges reduced.

Do I Need a Lawyer for Reckless Driving Charges?

You have the option of representing yourself, but how much do you know about reckless driving law? You could be risking your freedom by doing so!

reckless driving lawyer can help you. 

So don’t take any chances when your freedom is on the line. Hire an experienced reckless driving defense attorney today and avoid conviction, potential jail time, and license suspension.

Our law firm has represented reckless drivers in court for a long time. Our attorneys have the experience and skills to offer you the legal representation you need for your reckless driving charge.

So whether you’ve received a speeding ticket or are facing a criminal charge, our attorneys are here to offer a strong defense for your case.

Don’t just stand by while facing license suspension, fines, conviction, and jail time. Contact us today and schedule a consultation so that we can discuss your case.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between careless and reckless driving?

Reckless driving and careless driving have one significant difference: the intent and motives behind the driving. A reckless driver drives intending to harm persons or property. In comparison, a careless driver breaks traffic laws without the intention to harm anybody.

Note that you cannot be charged with both careless and reckless driving for the same incident. You will either face a careless driving charge or a reckless driving charge.


What is the maximum sentence for careless driving in Virginia?

In Virginia, careless driving is a Class 1 misdemeanor. So, if you are arrested due to careless driving, you will be tried. If you are found guilty, you will be fined $2500, and you could spend up to 12 months in jail.

If you have been charged with careless driving, get yourself a careless driving attorney. They will be able to help you with your case as they know all the laws on careless driving.


How fast is considered to be reckless driving?

If you are pulled over for driving 20 miles/hour over the posted speed limit or at 80 miles/hour, you may be charged with reckless driving. However, speed limits vary from one state to another, and your traffic attorney can give you more details.


What is the difference between speeding and reckless driving?

Speeding is simply driving over the designated speed, or in some cases, faster than the road conditions allow. In contrast, reckless driving refers to driving above the posted limit with the intent of harming people or destroying property.


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