Why do you need a lawyer for your Reckless Driving charge?
Reckless Driving is a criminal charge that has the potential to seriously impact your life, if you are convicted. This is why it is imperative that you hire a skilled and knowledgeable attorney who is well-versed in both the criminal and DOL aspects of your criminal charge.
Amendments from DUI to Reckless Driving:
Often times, a person is offered to plead guilty to Reckless Driving as an amendment from a DUI charge. Admittedly, the consequences of a Reckless Driving charge, when compared to DUI, are less severe; however, the consequences can still be painful.
How is a DUI similar to Reckless Driving?
Both Reckless Driving and DUI are a gross misdemeanors, which carry a maximum sentence of 364 days in jail and a $5,000 fine. Also notable, both are major moving violations. If you commit 3 major moving violations within 5 years, you become what is known as a Habitual Traffic Offender, and your license will be revoked indefinitely.
It is also worthy of noting that if your Reckless Driving charge was amended from a DUI, your Reckless Driving conviction will be treated as a prior offense for purposes of sentencing if you were to be charged with a subsequent DUI.
How is a DUI different than Reckless Driving?
Unlike DUI, Reckless Driving has a mandatory license suspension of 30 days. On the other hand, DUI has a mandatory license suspension anywhere from 90 days to 4 years, depending on the prior DUI convictions and the BAC and/or refusal of the breathalyzer.
Additionally, Reckless Driving does not require any proof of drug or alcohol consumption and/or impairment. Specifically, RCW 46.61.500 defines the elements for reckless driving as follows: "Any person who drives any vehicle in willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property is guilty of reckless driving."
Can I still drive if I am convicted of Reckless Driving?
You may seek a Restricted Driver's License through DOL upon your conviction. For more information on Restricted Driver's License options, click here.