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Have to Show Up for Reckless Driving Court Hearing?

Have to Show Up for Reckless Driving Court Hearing?

If you were driving through Virginia, and you were stopped by a police officer for driving faster than 80 mph on the highway, there is a good chance you were cited for reckless driving.

The officer gives you a summons. It is not a traffic ticket and not prepayable. Rather, it criminal charge with a court date. So now you are wondering:

  • “Do I have to show up for a reckless driving court hearing?”
  • “Is a court date for reckless driving mandatory?”
  • “Can I prepay my reckless driving ticket, and avoid coming to court?”
  • “How do I know if I have to come to court for reckless driving in Virginia?”

Here is the answer: it depends. Courts in Roanoke and elsewhere will require you to come to court for reckless driving if the prosecutor is going to seek jail time. Otherwise, your appearance is waived, and either a lawyer can go to court for you without attending, or you can waive it altogether, and just wait to get a bill in the mail for your fine and costs.

A typical case involves reckless driving by speed. Let’s say the person is charged driving 88 mph in a 70 mph zone on the highway.

If the prosecutor is not seeking jail time, then the defendant does not have to appear in court. Then, either the person will be found guilty as charged in their absence, assessed a fine, and sent a bill by the court to pay in 30 days, or, if they had a lawyer show up on their behalf, have contested the charge to get a reduction or a dismissal.

Still have questions about your reckless driving case? Call for a free consultation at (540) 585-1776 to find out if you have to go to court for reckless driving.

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