Consequences of Reckless Driving in Virginia

by sem on April 8, 2013

Reckless Driving Ticket in Virginia

Did you know the traffic code in Virginia has over 20 sections that pertain to reckless driving? Unlike a speeding ticket or standard traffic offense, reckless driving is treated as a misdemeanor in Virginia. It’s important to understand what constitutes reckless driving, and if a Virginia driver safety course is a viable option.

What Qualifies as Reckless Driving?

The Virginia DMV has a broad scope of traffic violations that fall under the reckless driving category. If you’re pulled over for speeding 20 MPH over the speed limit, or any speed faster than 80 MPH, you will be charged with reckless driving. But driving too fast isn’t the only thing you need to worry about. You could be charged with reckless driving if you’re convicted of any of the following:

  • • Failing to use your signal properly
  • • Racing
  • • Passing an emergency vehicle or school bus
  • • Passing at a rail road crossing
  • • Passing on the crest of a hill
  • • Driving too fast for the road conditions

What Are the Consequences?

If the Virginia court charges you with reckless driving, 6 demerit points will be added to your driving record.  Those points will stay on your record for up to 11 years! That’s not all. Since reckless driving is considered a misdemeanor, you will also have a permanent criminal record.

There is hope, however. Depending on your violation, the court may reduce your crime from a misdemeanor to an improper driving offense — a non-criminal charge. Only the judge has the ability to reduce your charge, not the officer issuing you the traffic ticket.

How Can I Improve My Driving Record?

Demerit points on your record can lead to higher Virginia insurance rates and possible license suspension. So what can you do? If you’ve received a traffic ticket in Virginia, you may have the option to earn up to 5 safe driving points by completing a Virginia Driving Safety Course. This 8-hour driving course in Virginia is one of the only ways to counteract demerit points on your record and keep you in good standing with your insurance company. The fastest way to earn up to 5 safe driving points is to take an online driver safety course in Virginia. A state-approved online course will contain all the essential safe-driving info, yet allow you to complete the course in a more relaxed environment.

If you are ordered by the court to complete a Virginia driver safety course, you can do it online or in a classroom. Bear in mind though, you will not be able to earn safe driving points for a court-ordered class. And if you don’t complete your course within 90 days, you could lose your driving privileges.

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