Tag: suspension

How Virginia Assesses Points on Your Driving Record

Speeding in Virginia? How many points is that?

Upon receiving a speeding ticket in Virginia, most drivers want to know how many points will be placed on their driving record. Virginia’s Uniform Demerit Point System can be a bit confusing. It is important for both in-state and out-of-state drivers to understand Virginia’s Uniform Demerit Point System.

All Virginia-licensed drivers and residents are subject to Virginia’s Uniform Demerit Point System. The Commonwealth’s demerit point system does not apply to out of state drivers. For example, a person, licensed in North Carolina, convicted of reckless driving eighty-eight (88) miles per hour in a sixty-five (65) mile-per-hour zone in Henrico County General District Court would be subject to North Carolina’s demerit point system, not Virginia’s. As a result, it is important for out-of-state drivers to contact their state’s department of motor vehicles to determine the applicable demerit points associated with their specific charge.

All Virginia drivers start with zero points on their driving records. Virginia licensed drivers receive one positive (+1) point for every year of good driving. In-state drivers may receive positive five (+5) points by voluntarily completing a defensive driving school. However, this can only be done once every two years. Five points are the maximum positive points permitted by law in the state. As a result, the best driver point balance in Virginia is +5 points.

There are three categories of negative point violations: three demerit point violations, four demerit point violations, and six demerit point violations. Examples of six demerit point violations are DUI, reckless driving by speed, speeding in excess of eighty miles per hour, speeding in excess of twenty miles per hour, and driving on a suspended license. For instance, a Virginia licensed driver or resident convicted of DUI would receive six negative points on their driving record. If a person is convicted of more than one demerit point violation with the same offense date, then that person is assessed demerit points for the highest demerit point violation. For example, a person convicted of DUI and speeding seventy-nine miles per hour in a seventy mile per hour zone in Chesterfield County General District Court would be assessed six negative demerit points for the DUI conviction. No demerit points would be assessed for the speeding conviction.

VA speeding ticket lawyers points drivers license

Click here for a full list of Virginia traffic violations and their corresponding demerit points. 

There is no limit to the number of negative points a person may accumulate. A person who accumulates negative twelve demerit points in a twelve consecutive month period or negative twenty-four demerit points in an eighteen consecutive month period will be placed on probation. This probationary period lasts for six months. Any person convicted of a demerit point violation during the probationary period will have their license suspended for ninety days (six demerit point violations), sixty days (four demerit point violations), or forty-five days (three demerit point violations). For example, a person convicted of reckless driving by speed, who is on probation, will have their driver’s license suspended for ninety days because reckless driving by speed is a six demerit point violation. However, people suspended while on probation may be eligible to petition the Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles for a restricted driver’s license.

A person who successfully makes it through the probationary period with no demerit point violations will, then, be placed on an eighteen month control period. A person who receives a demerit point violation during the control period will be placed back on a six month probationary period. Additionally, a person who violates probation will have their probation extended for an additional six months.

The best advice is to try to avoid being placed on probation. You should take even minor traffic infractions seriously because demerit points tend to sneak up on people. For example, a person with zero points who pays off three speeding tickets they received within the same year may be placed on probation. Experienced traffic attorneys, like the lawyers at The Weiland Firm, PLC, know how to advise their clients to avoid the accumulation of demerit points from reckless driving and speeding tickets in Virginia.

The Weiland Firm, PLC is a leading firm of Virginia Speeding Ticket Lawyers

Call (804) 355-8037 for a free consultation

Virginia DUI Lawyer Has Charges Reduced for Client

THE RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN ANY FUTURE CASE UNDERTAKEN BY THE LAWYER. THE RESULTS DEPEND ON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE.

Virginia Drunk Driving Charges Reduced

A lawyer at the Law Firm of The Weiland Firm, PLC recently defended two clients in a Virginia courtroom charged with driving under the influence. The attorney attained successful results in both DUI cases.

One client was charged with a second offense DUI and refusal to take a breathalyzer test. If convicted of both charges, our client would have suffered severe consequences.

The combination of both the refusal charge and the second offense DUI would have resulted in the following:

  •  A mandatory-minimum sentence of twenty (20) days in jail
  •  License suspension for four (4) years
  •  Inability to obtain a restricted license for the two years of his suspension
  • Ignition interlock on all vehicles he owned

In his discussions with the Commonwealth Attorney, the attorney at The Weiland Firm, PLC was successful in convincing the prosecutor that there may have been a legal issue with the initial stop of the client by the police officer. The prosecutor agreed to dismiss the refusal charge and reduce the charge of driving under the influence from a second offense to a first offense DUI. As such, the defendant did not receive any active jail time, was immediately given a restricted license and did not have to install ignition interlock in his vehicle.

The other client was charged with a first offense DUI. Due to mitigating circumstances, the attorney was able to negotiate a reduction from driving while under the influence of alcohol to reckless driving. Our client avoided a mandatory one year suspension of his license and did not have to enroll in the in the Virginia Alcohol Action Safety Program required in a DUI conviction.

The Weiland Firm, PLC has years of experience providing quality legal representation in Virginia traffic cases. Our office specializes in traffic law, and we are prepared to attain the best possible result in your Virginia DUI case.

The Weiland Firm, PLC is a leading firm of VA DUI Attorneys

Call (804) 355-8037 for a free consultation

Virginia DUI and Reckless Driving: License Suspension

Drivers Risk a Suspended License for DWI or Reckless Driving in VA

Virginia judges are authorized to suspend a person’s driving privileges within the state for convictions of reckless driving by speed, reckless driving resulting from an accident, and driving under the influence. Any license suspension imposed for reckless driving is left to the discretion of the court and may be as long as six months. Out-of-state drivers convicted of DUI in Virginia face a mandatory one year suspension of license. Such suspensions only affect a person’s ability to drive in Virginia. A Virginia judge cannot suspend an out-of-state driver’s license to drive in any other state. As a result, a driver with a Pennsylvania license convicted of a DUI in Virginia can operate a car in any state, except Virginia. However, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles may communicate the suspension to Pennsylvania, at which point the appropriate government entity in Pennsylvania can choose to suspend that person’s driver’s license.

Virginia judges are barred by law from seizing an out-of-state driver’s license after suspending that person’s privilege to drive in Virginia. The applicable part of Virginia Code §46.2-398 states:

For any revocation or suspension of a privilege to drive in Virginia of a person who does not have a Virginia driver’s license but who does have a valid driver’s license from another jurisdiction, the court shall not order the physical surrender of such license.

This prevents Virginia courts from physically taking a person’s out-of-state driver’s license once the court suspends or revokes that person’s driving privileges in Virginia. So, the court cannot take a driver’s North Carolina license after convicting that person of reckless driving by speed. The court may only suspend that person’s ability to drive in Virginia. The person can drive in North Carolina or any other state up until their North Carolina driver’s license is suspended by the appropriate government entity in North Carolina.

Courts may issue out-of-state motorists restricted driving privileges in Virginia. This typically happens when a person possesses a driver’s license from a bordering state—Maryland, North Carolina, Tennessee, or West Virginia—and works in Virginia. For instance, a Virginia judge is able to grant restricted driving privileges to a person convicted of DUI in Virginia who is licensed in Maryland and commutes to Caroline County, VA. Under this scenario, the person would be permitted to drive from Maryland to their place of employment in Caroline County. They may also be allowed to drive to and from school or be granted a variety of other restricted driving privileges as deemed worthy by the court.

A reckless driving or DUI conviction in Virginia can change your entire livelihood, especially your ability to travel freely to work, school, or to the doctor. And driving on a suspended license will only compound your legal woes down the line. Do not risk having your driving privileges suspended in a Virginia courtroom. Contact an experienced attorney if you’ve been charged with a DUI or reckless driving in Virginia.

The Weiland Firm, PLC is a leading firm of Virginia DWI and Reckless Driving Lawyers

Call (804) 355-8037 for a free consultation

Hanover County Reckless Driving Results

THE RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN ANY FUTURE CASE UNDERTAKEN BY THE LAWYER. THE RESULTS DEPEND ON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE.

Attorney Has Reckless Driving Cases Reduced in Hanover, Virginia

The Old Hanover County Courthouse

A lawyer from The Weiland Firm, PLC recently handled three reckless driving cases in Hanover County, Virginia. The Hanover General District Court is one of the more difficult courts in Virginia in which to obtain a favorable outcome in a traffic case. Our firm prides itself on providing the best defense possible, even under such circumstances.

Two of our clients were charged with reckless driving by speed, going 88 miles per hour and 86 miles per hour, respectively, in a 70 mile-per-hour zone. Reckless driving by speed is considered a Class 1 misdemeanor in Virginia and can result in lofty fines, high insurance premiums and six demerit points on your driving record. Even at these speeds, there’s a possibility that the Hanover General District Court will suspend your license. Our clients had good driving records. In both cases, our attorney had the charges reduced to improper driving, which is a simple traffic infraction. They received a fine, but avoided the crippling insurance premiums, excessive demerit points and suspended driving privileges that come with a reckless driving conviction.

We also represented another motorist charged with reckless driving by speed in Hanover County, for going 85 miles per our in a 70-mile-per-hour zone. The driver faced similar consequences, albeit while going a slightly lesser speed. Due to mitigating circumstances, the Court gave our client driving school for dismissal. So long as our client completes a court-approved, eight-hour driver safety class, the Court will dismiss the charge.

It is vital you consult with an experienced and knowledgeable attorney before going to court for a reckless driving ticket in Hanover, Virginia.

The Weiland Firm, PLC is a leading firm of Virginia Reckless Driving Lawyers

Call (804) 355-8037 for a free consultation

Second Offense DUI Reduced to First Offense in VA Court

THE RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN ANY FUTURE CASE UNDERTAKEN BY THE LAWYER. THE RESULTS DEPEND ON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE.

Jurisdiction and names omitted to protect the privacy of our clients.

On April 13, 2012, our law firm represented a client charged with committing a second offense DUI.  If convicted as charged, the client faced a mandatory minimum jail sentence and suspension of his license for a period of 3 years along with ignition interlock as a condition of a restricted license. The Weiland Firm, PLC was able to get the charge reduced to a first offense.   As a result, the client received no jail time, no ignition interlock, received a license suspension for one year as opposed to 3 years and was granted an immediate restricted license.