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Montgomery County Reckless Driving Lawyer
Reckless driving means operating a vehicle in a manner that is, or seems to be, willful or deliberate, and puts the safety of other individuals or property in danger. This type of charge is broad and open to interpretation by law enforcement meaning that if an officer believes a person’s driving conduct presents a danger to the public, they can be cited for reckless driving. Some common examples of reckless driving include weaving in and out of traffic, driving on the shoulder, following too closely, and passing where it is illegal.
Although this offense may seem minor, it can carry a number of serious penalties including fines and license penalties. As a result, it is important to take this offense seriously and consult with a Montgomery County reckless driving lawyer as soon as you are charged. An experienced defense attorney in Montgomery County can assist in building a defense and mitigating the damage as much as possible.
Penalties for Reckless Driving
There is a maximum penalty of $1,000, as well as six points on the driver’s record for reckless driving in Montgomery County. The six points on their 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 a person’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 their car for work. Furthermore, if a person is seeking employment which involves driving, such as a sanitation truck driver, it is unlikely they will be hired.
Reckless driving is a criminal citation and the driver is not required to appear in court. However, if the individual wishes to contest a citation, they individual or their reckelss driving lawyer in Montgomery County must send their request for a hearing to the listed mailing address. The individual also has the ability to not go to court and simply pay the listed fine amount on the citation, however, this is same as pleading guilty and a ticket cannot be contested after payment of the fine.
Reckless Driving vs. Speeding Ticket
Although it is common for a police officer to write a ticket citing a driver who was only speeding for reckless driving, they cannot be charged with reckless driving for speeding only. A judge must consider all factors of a Montgomery County reckless driving case, including whether the driving was erratic, how much over the speed limit a person was going, and other considerations.
If a person 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. However, as a Montgomery County reckless driving lawyer can explain, if a person is charged with reckless driving, the ticket will cite Maryland Transportation Article 21-901.1.
Importance of Local Counsel
Having a Montgomery County reckless driving lawyer who is familiar with the 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 have the charge dismissed completely.