How much is a reckless driving charge in Virginia?

What is reckless driving in Virginia?

Any act of a driver that can cause potential harm to any living thing or any property is deemed as reckless driving in Virginia. A reckless driving ticket is not easy as a speeding ticket as it is categorized as a criminal offense in Virginia. The person who is given a reckless driving ticket has to face harsh penalties and court trails. The penalties include hefty fines, court fees, attorney fees and even potential jail time. In Virginia, a person can be charged with reckless driving due to 14 careless acts.

According to Virginia code, section 46.2-852:

“Irrespective of the maximum speeds permitted by law, any person who drives a vehicle on any highway recklessly or at a speed or in a manner so as to endanger the life, limb, or property of any person shall be guilty of reckless driving.”

While the other common acts of which the drivers are convicted:

  1. Causing damage to any living thing or property due to careless driving
    1. driving in the Parking Lots (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.2-864)
    2. Passing a stopped school bus (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.1-859)
  • Driving a faulty vehicle (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.2-853)
  1. Driving Next to a vehicle in same Lane (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.2-857)
  2. Crossing a dangerous curve (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.2-854)
  3. Crossing a Railroad Crossing (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.2-858)
  • Driving an overloaded vehicle (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.2-855)
  • Not Yielding correct Way (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.2-868)
  1. Not giving proper Signal on highway (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.2-860)
  2. Passing two Vehicles in a single lane (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.2-856)
  1. Over speeding (mentioned in Virginia Code 46.2 – 862)
    1. Speeding on the Highway or ignoring the current traffic conditions irrespective of the current speed limit (mentioned in Virginia Code, section 46.2-861)

Penalties for reckless driving in Virginia

The common penalties for reckless driving in Virginia are very harsh as the majority of life-threatening accidents and accidental deaths are due to over speeding and careless attitude of the driver.  Reckless driving is treated as a class 1 misdemeanor in Virginia and the convicted driver may face the following penalties as per the sensitivity of his crime:

  1. Hefty fines which can lead up to $2500 with an additional court fee.
  2. Imprisonment for a maximum period of 12 months
  3. Suspension of the driving license: The court can even suspend the license of the driver for at least 2 to 6 months.
  4. Demerit driving points: The department of the motor vehicle can allow up to 6 demerit points in the driving transcript of the licensee.

A long-term disadvantage of a reckless driving ticket in Virginia:

  1. Dependency:
    1. Dependency on public mode of transport if the driving license of the are suspended
  2. Hiked insurance premiums
    1. The car insurance premiums increase due to the demerit points in the driving records of the licensee
  3. Long-term record of criminal offense
  4. Long-term record of reckless driving ticket
    1. Record of reckless driving in the driving transcript for a period of 2 years
  5. Loss of job
    1. The individual can even lose his job due to imprisonment

Driver’s personal and professional life is disturbed