The Different Forms of Reckless Driving That Can Get You a Ticket

a lady putting on makeup in her car
*Collaborative Post

Reckless driving is regarded as a criminal charge, and in most cases, the offender gets more than just a ticket. Careless driving, on the other hand, usually results in a ticket. With the aid of experienced traffic ticket attorneys, you can contest tickets received for careless driving. This is not the case with reckless driving.

To enable us to paint a clear picture of what reckless driving is and the forms that can get you a ticket, we need to differentiate between careless driving and reckless driving. The former involves driving in a manner that might cause harm to people or property. On the other hand, reckless driving deals with the motive involved when a person drives with the intent to cause damage to a person or property. So, the main difference between both violations is that a reckless driver operates the vehicle with wanton or willful disregard for the safety of persons or property, while a careless driver doesn’t have such an intention.

Proving that a driver is driving recklessly is usually determined by the citing officer and, finally, the jury or judge. Therefore, you need a traffic law attorney to defend your case and prove your innocence, proving that you were only careless rather than reckless. But what actions can a citing officer regard as reckless driving? Here are a few examples:

  • Excessive speeding, especially in pedestrian areas
  • Driving an unsafe vehicle, which the driver is aware of
  • Unfocused driving near pedestrians or at high speeds
  • Street racing
  • Driving a vehicle without headlights at night
  • Peeling out abruptly
  • Weaving dangerously between lanes
  • Intentional failure to yield
  • Running red lights or stop lights
  • Tailgating
  • Intentionally refusing to signal
  • Going through railroad blockades
  • Passing irregular traffic lanes
  • Passing on blind curves
  • Sudden braking
  • Illegal turns
  • Using a phone while driving
  • Driving under the influence
  • Intentionally refusing to yield to pedestrians
Man searching destination direction or address on gps or navigator application via mobile smartphone inside a car while driving car – back view. Technology, distraction and driving concept

Image source

While the above are the general actions that might be said to constitute reckless driving, the state you live in defines what reckless driving entails. Since the penalty for reckless driving is more than just a simple traffic violation ticket, you must approach such charges with caution. This is because reckless driving is categorized as a criminal charge, and accepting it might lead to severe fines, increased insurance premiums, possible license suspension, a criminal record, and, in some cases, incarceration.

What we mean is that if you are convicted of the charge, especially if you just accept it without contesting it, you could be fined as much as $200 or face a 30-day incarceration, and in some cases, both. Moreover, this conviction will remain on your driving record and can lead to increased insurance premiums on your vehicle. If it is discovered that it is a violation you’ve committed before, your driving license might be suspended.

When you get a ticket and a fine for reckless driving, it is recommended that you don’t accept it. This is the most common mistake that most people make when in such a situation. Instead, your first course of action should be getting a reckless driving defense attorney. These professionals will ensure that your legal rights are protected, strive to reduce the possible ramifications of the charge, and alter the case’s outcome.

The role of a reckless driving defense attorney includes:

  • Initial analysis and investigation
  • Building a solid defense strategy
  • Challenging the reckless driving charge
  • Evaluation of the stop-and-arrest procedure
  • Evaluating and disputing evidence
  • Consideration of all possible results and sentencing alternatives
  • Working towards plea bargains or case dismissals instead of guilty verdicts

To sum up, distinguishing between careless driving and reckless driving is essential due to the stark contrast in their repercussions. Reckless driving, marked by intentional disregard for safety, carries criminal implications beyond mere traffic citations. Actions like excessive speeding, street racing, or driving under the influence constitute reckless driving and may result in severe penalties such as hefty fines, escalated insurance premiums, license suspension, and even incarceration. Hence, seeking legal representation from a reliable reckless driving defense attorney becomes imperative. These legal experts are instrumental in safeguarding your rights, constructing a robust defense strategy, and striving to mitigate the potential fallout from the charges. Their aim is to secure the most favorable outcome possible for your case, navigating the complexities of the legal system with precision and expertise.

*This is a collaborative post. For further information please refer to my disclosure page.

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