In New York, reckless driving charges can result in prison time, fines, and significantly higher insurance premiums. A conviction for reckless driving will also result in a five-point penalty on a person’s driver’s license. Depending on the jurisdiction, a judge may have the discretion to suspend your driver’s license. Driving recklessly occurs when a person drives in a way that creates a dangerous condition on the road or infringes on the people’s right to use the road freely.
Contact a Central New York Reckless Driving Attorney
If you’ve been charged with reckless driving in New York, we recommend contacting a New York traffic ticket attorney as soon as possible. The New York Traffic Ticket Lawyers are here to help. Contact the New York Traffic Ticket Lawyers today to schedule your free initial consultation.
New York Reckless Driving Laws
According to §1212 of New York’s Vehicle and Traffic Law (VTL), reckless driving occurs when a motorist driving a motor vehicle operates the motor vehicle in a way that interferes with the free and proper use of the public highway. It can also include unreasonably endangering users of the public highway.
In many cases, reckless driving charges will accompany other charges, such as speeding and DWI charges. Driving recklessly is considered a misdemeanor in New York, but the penalties can be long-lasting.
Some examples include the following:
- Excessive lane changes, especially during rush hour traffic or the highway
- Speeding or driving too fast based on the current conditions on the road
- Neglecting to stop at the stop sign or traffic light
- Improper passing, including the use of the shoulder or failing to signal
Young people, especially men between 18 and 26, are the most likely charged with reckless driving in New York. There has also been an increase in cases in which an elderly individual makes a mistake while driving, resulting in a car crash. An example would be an elderly individual who mistakenly turns into oncoming traffic on the highway.
Reckless Driving With a Speeding Ticket in New York
In many cases, defendants charged with reckless driving are also accused of driving at an excessive speed. Suppose a driver is driving 40 miles or more over the speed limit. Such a charge will result in 11 points on a person’s license. Combining those points with the five points from a reckless driving charge adds up to 16 points, making a driver’s license suspension likely. A driver’s license may even be revoked.
At 16 points, the speeding fine can be up to $685, leading to over $1,000. The total fines and surcharges would exceed $2,000, not including increased insurance premiums. If you’ve been charged with reckless driving and speeding, it’s important that you work with a skilled attorney who can help you avoid losing your license and paying significant fines.
Penalties in New York
In New York, a reckless driving conviction can include a jail sentence of up to 180 days and a driver’s license suspension. A conviction will also result in a five-year penalty on your driver’s license and can result in a driver’s license suspension. Any conviction on your record can have negative consequences for a person’s future educational and employment opportunities.
When a New York resident has more than 6 points on his or her license, the driver must pay a responsibility assessment fee for up to three years. Additionally, if your driver’s license is revoked, the negative points that come with a conviction will make it more challenging to obtain your driver’s license again. If you have a commercial driver’s license (CDL) and you were charged with reckless driving as part of your employment, your commercial driver’s license is at risk.
The Benefits of Hiring a New York Traffic Attorney
Many people assume they should just pay for their traffic tickets. However, working with an experienced traffic attorney can be beneficial. We recommend discussing your reckless driving charge with an experienced attorney. Doing so can often help people avoid many of the direct and indirect consequences. An experienced traffic attorney can fight to:
- Protect your driver’s license
- Protect your commercial driver’s license (CDL)
- Reduce or eliminate the points
- Get your charges completely dismissed
- Advocate to avoid jail time, fines, and court costs
- Help you keep your insurance premiums from increasing significantly
Defenses to Reckless Driving Charges
After carefully reviewing your case, one of the experienced attorneys at the New York Traffic Ticket Lawyers will determine the best arguments on your behalf. Depending on the facts of your case, we may be able to get the charges dismissed or dropped. We may be able to argue that you never actually interfered with the proper and free use of the road or that the interference wasn’t unreasonable. Other defense arguments include the following:
- The vehicle involved wasn’t a “motor vehicle”
- Nobody was endangered
- The law enforcement officer doesn’t have probable cause to stop to investigate
- Evidence should be suppressed because it violates your constitutional rights
- There is not enough evidence to support a criminal reckless driving charge
Discuss Your Traffic Ticket With a Central New York Reckless Driving Attorney
If you or your loved one have been charged with reckless driving in New York, it’s in your best interest to contact a traffic attorney right away. We’ve successfully represented many New York clients against these types of charges at the New York Traffic Ticket Lawyers. We will carefully review your case, develop an effective legal strategy and represent you in court. Contact the New York Traffic Ticket Lawyers today to schedule your initial consultation.
The New York Traffic Ticket Lawyers handle Reckless Driving Tickets throughout Central New York including Albany County, Erie County, Onondaga County, Orange County, Saratoga County, and Warren County.