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Maryland Reckless and Negligent Driving Lawyer
As codified under Section 21-901.1 of the Maryland Transportation Code, it is unlawful for an individual to either recklessly or negligently drive a motor vehicle. Reckless driving and negligent driving are separate and distinct violations, and each carry different administrative penalties. While neither of these violations constitute jailable criminal offenses, traffic violations should not be taken lightly. That is because driving is not a right, but a privilege, and the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) can strip an individual of their driving privileges. Depending upon the specific circumstances of your case, it may be in your best interest to seek out the guidance of legal counsel.
According to the Maryland Transportation Code, a person is guilty of reckless driving if she or he drives a motor vehicle with either a “wanton or willful disregard for the safety of persons or property” or “in a manner that indicates a wanton or willful disregard for the safety of persons or property.” If found guilty of reckless driving, a person will be subject to administrative penalties (as set out by the MVA). The most recent enumeration (note: this will open as a PDF in a new window) of the administrative penalties for reckless driving states that a person will be subject to a $510.00 fine and will accrue six points against his or her driver’s license. The point accumulation should be taken seriously, as it can jeopardize your ability to drive. If you are found guilty of reckless driving, the MVA mandates that you enroll in a Driver Improvement Program. This is a rehabilitation program conducted by the MVA which lasts between four to eight hours. You will receive a referral letter from the MVA notifying you of the date by which you must complete the program.
Having a Maryland traffic lawyer who understands reckless driving and the legal process in Maryland can be invaluable. Such an attorney can come to your assistance, and examine the facts of your case to develop a comprehensive defense strategy. Reckless driving is more egregious than negligent driving, as discussed below, and an experienced traffic lawyer may be able to argue that your conduct was more consistent with the latter, less severe violation. Simply put, there is no reason to accept the administrative penalties if you have not exhausted all of your options, so contact a Maryland reckless driving lawyer today.
Negligent driving is a less severe violation than reckless driving, but still should be taken seriously. Being found guilty of this violation can result in a $140.00 fine and an assessment of one point against your driver’s license. Moreover, if the negligent conduct led to an accident you may be subject to enhanced penalties – a $280 fine and three points.
According to Section 21-901-1(b), a person is guilty of negligent driving if he or she “drives a motor vehicle in a careless or imprudent manner that endangers any property or the life or person of any individual.”
Especially if your conduct led to an accident, seeking out the advice of experienced legal counsel will likely be in your best interest. While not a jailable criminal violation, negligent driving does carry administrative penalties, as illustrated above.
Contact the Maryland Criminal Defense Group
The attorneys with the Maryland Criminal Defense Group has great experience helping individuals facing traffic violations in the Free State. Their intimate knowledge of the Maryland legal system makes them an asset to their clients. If you are facing either a reckless driving or negligent driving violation, the Firm offers a no-cost initial consultation to discuss the facts of your case.