Annapolis Reckless Driving Lawyer
Although it may not seem like an extremely consequential charge, reckless driving can have a detrimental impact on a person’s driving record. With a conviction, an individual may be unable to get any job that involves driving, or maintain the driving job they currently possess. However, there are many defenses that can be employed for this type of offense, which is why the assistance of an Annapolis reckless driving attorney is crucial. To begin building a defense for your case, consult with a defense lawyer in Annapolis today.
Understanding Reckless Driving
Reckless driving means operating a vehicle in a manner that either is, or seems to be, willful or deliberate, and puts the safety of persons or property in danger. This type of charge is broad and open to interpretation. If an officer believes an individual’s driving conduct presents a danger to the public, they can be cited for reckless driving. An Annapolis reckless driving lawyer will be able to evaluate an individual’s case, and determine the best defense to help ensure that the minimum penalties are received.
Types of Charges
A reckless driving charge can stem from a number of infractions, including:
- Weaving in and out of traffic
- Driving on the shoulder
- Tailgating (not leaving adequate space between an individual’s vehicle and the vehicle in front of them)
- Ignoring traffic signs and signals
- Speeding 25 mph over the posted limit
- Participating in a speed contest
- Passing where it is illegal (i.e. using the opposite traffic lane to pass)
Any of these infractions and more can lead to a potential reckless driving charge. A reckless driving lawyer in Annapolis can help in assessing the severity of an individual’s charge, and providing a strong and appropriate defense.
There is a maximum penalty of $1,000, as well as six points on an individual’s driver’s record. The six points on a person’s record will require them to complete a driver improvement course. Additionally, a criminal misdemeanor conviction for reckless driving could also be on their record. If an individual’s driver’s license is suspended due to the accumulation of points, it could have an impact on their livelihood, especially if they rely on driving a car for work. Furthermore, if an individual is seeking employment which involves driving, such as a trash truck driver, it is unlikely that they will be hired. Due to the potential seriousness of the consequences, the assistance of an reckless driving lawyer should be acquired immediately.
Reckless driving is a criminal citation, and an individual is not required to appear in court. If an individual wishes to contest a citation, they must send in a request for a hearing to the listed P.O. Box on the master list of Maryland. An individual also has the ability to not go to court and simply pay the listed fine amount on the citation.
Reckless Driving vs. Speeding
Although it is common for a police officer to write a ticket citing a driver who was only speeding for reckless driving, an individual cannot be charged with reckless driving for speeding only. A judge must consider all factors on a reckless driving case, including whether the driving was erratic, how much over the speed limit the individual was going, and other considerations.
To determine whether an individual was charged with reckless driving or just speeding, they must reference the ticket. If an individual is charged with speeding, the ticket will cite either Maryland Transportation Article 21-801.1 for exceeding maximum speed, or Maryland Transportation Article 21-801A for driving a vehicle in excess of a reasonable and prudent speed on a highway. If an individual is charged with reckless driving, the ticket will cite Maryland Transportation Article 21-901.1.
Benefit of a Local Attorney
Having the assistance of an Annapolis reckless driving attorney, who is familiar with Maryland’s Transportation Article, and who understands which violations could be considered reckless will be invaluable for mitigating your case. It may lead to your charge being reduced, which could significantly lower the potential penalties, or having the charge dismissed completely.