Criminal & Traffic FYIs

Criminal Overview


Getting charged with a crime can feel stressful. Be aware of your rights; asserting them can make a huge difference in a criminal case. The ACLU of Virginia has several tips about asserting your rights here. The highlights are that you do NOT have to consent to a search (even if you think the police are going to search anyway – it could help your case if they ask for consent and you refuse consent) and you do not have to answer their questions (remain silent) before or after arrest.  

  • Traffic court handles traffic infractions like speeding and misdemeanors like Reckless Driving and Driving Under the Influence (DUIs). Speeding tickets can add points to your license, which remain on your driving record for two years and may affect your car insurance rates. If you have a lot of points on your record, you should consider taking a driver improvement course, which will add five safe points to your record. The conviction itself can remain on your driving record for much longer. You can visit this DMV page to learn more about points and how long convictions for traffic infractions remain on your driving record.  
  • Reckless driving and DUIs are obviously much more serious. You can be charged with reckless driving for going 20+ over the speed limit or over 85, regardless of the speed limit. You can also be charged with reckless driving for failing to move over when there is an emergency vehicle with flashing lights pulled over in a four-lane highway. There are several more ways a person may be charged with reckless driving in Virginia; visit the Virginia Code to learn more. Reckless driving is considered a Class 1 misdemeanor, which carries up to 12 months in jail and up to a $2,500 fine.  
  • DUIs are also very serious. For more information on DUIs, please give our office a call or attend a future information session.  

    More Questions?

    For specific questions and advice, please fill out an Intake form to request a consultation. Refer to our Request a Consultation Page for more information about eligibility and confidentiality. 

    Disclaimer: The information provided on this website is for general information purposes only and is not meant to advise on any particular legal issue. Laws change every year and it is possible that the information is no longer current or valid. For help with specific legal issues, you should consult an attorney.