Hampton Roads Speeding Ticket Lawyer

In Virginia, speeding offenses can be very serious. Since Virginia is extremely harsh on speeders, you should expect that a speeding ticket may ultimately turn out to be a reckless driving charge, which is a Class 1 criminal misdemeanor rather than just a traffic infraction. Therefore, you should look on your ticket to make sure that you are being charged with speeding. If you were going 20 miles or more over the speed limit, then it is possible that what would have been just a traffic infraction in any other state is actually a criminal offense in Virginia. An experienced speeding ticket lawyer in Hampton Roads can help you figure out what exactly you have been charged with, how to deal with it, and what things you should do to prepare for court.

Different Types of Speeding Offenses in Hampton Roads

There are two basic types of speeding offenses in Hampton Roads. One is general speeding, which is just a traffic infraction. The other is reckless driving, which is a criminal offense. The difference between an infraction and a criminal offense is in the penalties. Both of these are punishable by a fine and demerit points on your driver’s license. Too many demerit points can lead to a suspended license. However, a criminal offense is also punishable by jail time and a conviction is forever on your record, whereas an infraction will disappear from your record over time.

Court Procedures for Speeding and Reckless Driving

For a speeding ticket in Hampton Roads, you are not required to appear in court. This is different from reckless driving. In Virginia, criminal charges require defendants to appear in court regardless of how they decide to plea. For a speeding ticket, you can plead guilty and pay the fine online without ever showing up to court, but for reckless driving, even if you plead guilty, you have to do so in person.

Methods of Determining Speed

In Virginia, officers use different instruments to record a vehicle’s speed to decide that somebody has been speeding. These include radar and LIDAR instruments. They also pace vehicles, which is when an officer follows a vehicle they suspect to be speeding, matches the cruiser’s speed with that vehicle, and then looks at his own speedometer to determine how fast the vehicle is going.

Determining Ticket Type

The ticket will most likely state if it is for speeding, which is a traffic infraction, or reckless driving, which is a criminal offense. If it does not specify—and sometimes it doesn’t—then there is a box that states whether you have to appear in court or not. If you are not required to appear in court, you are likely being charged with just an infraction. If you are required to appear in court, then you are probably being charged with reckless driving.

Advantages of a Hampton Roads Speeding Ticket Lawyer

It is advantageous to have a Hampton Roads speeding ticket lawyer, because there are a variety of defenses that most people won’t know about unless they have experience in the courtroom. You want to have somebody on your side who can help figure out what you should be doing beforehand to get the best results possible in court. A lawyer can explain the charges to you so you know what you are facing.

It is often possible to have these charges reduced or dismissed. The best way to do this is with a lawyer who knows what he or she is doing. Sometimes it is not possible for your charges to be reduced or dismissed, but an attorney is still going to be able to help you mitigate the damages so that the penalties do not impact your life in a very detrimental way.