Virginia Uniform Summons for Reckless Driving
Virginia has some of the roughest driving laws in the United States. Reckless driving in Virginia is considered a felony. A reckless driving charge is a Class 1 misdemeanor which is a similar offense to a Driving Under Influence charge.
If a person is going over 80mph at any time (even if the speed limit is 65 mph) or going over 20mph than the speed limit, he/she could face reckless driving charges, which can result in severe punishments. Punishments include 12 months of imprisonment, a fine of up to $2500, six negative points on the driving record and the driver’s license getting revoked for up to six months.
There are a lot of types of reckless driving in Virginia. The ticket issued for reckless driving in Virginia is a piece of paper, usually a yellow carbon copy, with “Virginia Uniform Summons” written at the top. A Virginia Uniform summons is a document that states that you are summoned to appear in a court on the stated date to answer for your charges. The section of the Virginia Code you violated will be mentioned on the summons. There are 14 different circumstances that could result in a reckless driving charge, but not all of them requires to appear in a court.
The most common types of reckless driving charges include:
- Reckless by speed: Reckless driving tickets issued for speeding are the most common in Virginia. They are issued under the Virginia Code 46.2-862 which states: “A person shall be guilty of reckless driving who drives a motor vehicle on the highways in the Commonwealth (i) at a speed of twenty miles per hour or more in excess of the applicable maximum speed limit or (ii) in excess of eighty miles per hour regardless of the applicable maximum speed limit.”
- Failure to maintain control: A ticket for reckless driving can be issued under the VA Code § 46.2-853 “A person shall be guilty of reckless driving who drives a vehicle which is not under proper control or which has inadequate or improperly adjusted brakes on any highway in the Commonwealth.”
- General: A person can also be charged with reckless driving under the Virginia Code 46.2-852 even if he was driving under the speed limit and was in control of the vehicle, if he: (1) drove at a speed or in a manner so as to endanger life, limb, or property of another; or (2) that the driver disregarded the consequences of his actions and displayed an indifference to the safety of life, limb, or property.”
It is essential to understand that if you’re handed a Virginia Uniform Summon to sign by an officer, it means that you’re pledging by your signature to appear in court on the date, time and place mentioned on the ticket. Make sure you note down those detail, so you’re in the right court at the right time and on the right day because people often mess that up.