3 Types of Traffic Violations in Virginia You Should Know About
Across the United States, there are nearly 200 million licensed drivers. Among them, 41 million receive citations for traffic violations each year. Just because traffic violations are common, however, doesn’t mean they’re not serious.
If you’re convicted, you can face fines, loss of your license, and even spend time in jail – all of which can seriously disrupt your life. Whether you’re new to driving or have been operating a motor vehicle for a while, there are three categories of traffic violations in Virginia you need to know about: three-point violations, four-point violations, and six-point violations.
DMV Traffic Points
In Virginia, traffic violations are defined by points. The DMV tracks each violation to your driving record and allows or denies you driving privileges based on your points. The three point categories define the severity of the violation and determine the penalties you would face if you’re convicted.
Understanding each type of violation will better prepare you for being on the road and help you if you ever face criminal traffic charges. The higher the point value, the more important it is to speak with a traffic attorney that can help you.
Three-Point Traffic Violations in Virginia
The first category of traffic violations is three-point traffic violations, which are the least severe and include citations such as speeding (1-9 mph above the limit), improper passing, improper turning, failing to signal, and driving without lights.
Four-Point Traffic Violations in Virginia
One step above basic traffic violations in Virginia is four-point traffic violations. In Virginia, four-point traffic violations include speeding (10-19 mph above the limit), passing when unsafe, failing to stop for a pedestrian, following another car too closely, and others.
Six-Point Traffic Violations in Virginia
The most severe traffic violations in Virginia are six-point traffic violations. Some six-point violations, such as driving a commercial vehicle under the influence, stay on your record permanently.
Other violations vary in the time they remain on your record and include reckless driving, driving while intoxicated, driving with a revoked license, and manslaughter, among many others.
Punishments for Too Many Points
In addition to criminal charges, the DMV can revoke or suspend your license for having too many points on your record. For an adult, this is 12 points in 12 months, or 18 points in 24 months.
Also, you’ll face an automatic suspension if you get 18 points in 12 months or 24 points in 25 months. This is a 90-day suspension, and you’ll have to attend a safe driving clinic to be allowed to drive again.
However, some crimes create an automatic suspension or revocation no matter what your point total is. These range from driving without a valid license to fleeing the scene of a fatal accident. DUI will also automatically suspend or revoke your license.
Virginia Clinics for Safe Driving
When drivers are given demerit points against their record, they often have the opportunity to earn points back. Attending a clinic for safe driving is one of the most popular methods for earning positive points and can make a big difference for drivers who are in trouble.
Attorneys who work with traffic crime offenders often recommend to their clients that, if offered, they should take the opportunity to attend a safe driving clinic. Drivers who attend a safe driving clinic, whether they attend voluntarily or by force, are often rewarded with a reduced sentence.
Safe Driving Points
One thing that may confuse drivers is that you also accumulate safe points. For every full calendar year that you hold a valid Virginia driver’s license, you get a safe point added to your record, up to a maximum of five.
These safe points serve as proof that you’re a driver that has managed to stay on the right side of the law. Having some on your record will help your lawyer build a positive impression of your driving skills to the traffic court.
Contact Our Experienced Criminal Traffic Lawyers in Virginia
If you’ve recently been convicted of a traffic violation in Virginia, there’s no better time than now to secure an experienced and determined criminal traffic lawyer for your case. Even if you have only received a speeding ticket, there’s always the chance you will face detrimental consequences, especially if it wasn’t your first violation.
The attorneys at Pendleton Law Firm are dedicated to providing quality criminal traffic services to their clients in need, and for that reason are highly rated on Facebook, Yelp, and Google+ by their past clients. Call the Pendleton Law Firm Office criminal-traffic hotline or fill out our online contact form today.