Different Types of Speeding Infractions in Virginia Beach

In Virginia there are traffic infractions and then there are criminal charges in terms of speeding offenses. The difference between them is that traffic infractions will only affect your driving records, which means that you will get demerit points on your DMV records which go away after two years.

Criminal charges also affect your driving records the same way that traffic infractions do except they affect your criminal records as well. A criminal record is permanent and it is not uncommon for people to get background checks done throughout their life for a variety of reasons such as obtaining housing, to get student loans, applying for a job and anything that comes from one’s criminal records is going to come up. For this reason it is important if you are facing a speeding offense, especially one with criminal charges, that you consult with a Virginia Beach speeding ticket lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your case.

Common Ways That Speeding Tickets Are Issued In Virginia

In Virginia, the most common ways that speeding tickets are issued are to absent minded drivers driving on the highway either with the flow of traffic where everybody is going too fast or just someone driving by themselves that they don’t realize how fast they are going.

Speeding charges in Virginia are very harsh so a lot of out of state drivers are pulled over here for speeding especially reckless driving because it is such a different law from other states. Many other places don’t have reckless driving by speed. So people come from other states here, drive very fast and then find themselves with a criminal misdemeanor charge.

Another way that people get commonly issued speeding tickets is due to speed traps setup by officers. Usually they hide in areas where they know drivers tend to speed and then they catch a whole bunch of people.

Is Reckless Driving a Speeding Ticket in Virginia?

In Virginia, reckless driving is a separate charge from speeding. General speeding is a traffic infraction whereas reckless driving is a criminal Class 1 misdemeanor. It is possible to charge somebody with excessive speed and call it reckless driving but there is also possibility to charge someone with reckless driving who wasn’t speeding. They do have things in common but they also have a lot of things that are different.

Showing Up In Court For Reckless Driving vs. a Speeding Ticket

For a speeding ticket the court does not require an in-court appearance instead you could just prepay the ticket online or through the mail. The problem with doing that is that it is potentially pleading guilty to that charge without ever getting your day in court so you don’t get to fight it and have the opportunity to have it either reduced or dismissed whereas with reckless driving the appearance in court is mandatory. You do have to appear for reckless driving to fight the ticket or plead guilty in person. For either offense the best thing to do is go to court because you have nothing to lose by trying to fight it. They don’t punish you for trying to defend yourself even if the defense ultimately fails so why not give yourself the opportunity?

Reckless Driving vs. a Speeding Ticket in Virginia

Reckless driving encompasses a whole bunch of moving violations not just excessive speed. While there is reckless driving by speed which is 20 miles/hour over the speed limit or 80 miles/hour anywhere there is also reckless driving by other means such as by accident or by passing an emergency vehicle for example. So it is a little bit too restrictive to call reckless driving just a speeding ticket as there is a lot more to it than that.