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Traffic Offenses

You may think a Virginia traffic offense isn’t a big deal, but if you don’t try to fight or reduce your ticket, it could cost you. Not only do Virginia moving violations carry fines, they will cause your auto insurance premiums to go up. Your traffic infraction will also add points to your driving record that could result in the suspension of your license. In some cases, your moving violation may even be charged as a criminal misdemeanor. For these reasons, you should have a Roanoke traffic offense lawyer to fight your traffic ticket. Contact the experienced attorneys at Copenhaver Ellett & Derrico today at to find out how we can help you.

If you are charged with a traffic offense, you may be required to appear at a court hearing to plead your case. Alternatively, you may have to pay a significant fine. An experienced legal advocate can save your valuable time and money by appearing on your behalf and making the best arguments to defend you in court or negotiate a better outcome in your case.

How Are Virginia Traffic Violation Penalties Determined?

Virginia traffic violation penalties are set by statute; however, they are negotiable if you have an experienced Roanoke traffic defense lawyer on your side. Monetary penalties can vary according to court fees and whether the penalties are paid on time.

Although they are negotiable, Virginia law establishes an amount which you may be fined for each violation. When it comes to speeding, you may be required to pay $6 for every mile per hour over the speed limit that you were going. The fine rate jumps to $7 for every mile per hour over the speed limit in work and school zones. In residential areas, you may be required to pay $200 plus $8 for every mile per hour over the speed limit. In addition to the fines, you may have to pay a court fee of $62 for every offense.

Some traffic violations may involve more serious penalties, such as misdemeanor criminal charges. For example, if you go over 20 miles per hour over the speed limit, you may receive a speeding ticket and get charged with reckless driving, a crime punishable by up to 12 months in jail and fines of up to $2,500. If you are involved in an accident, you are likely to be charged with reckless driving. State police policy requires this misdemeanor criminal charge in most cases. An experienced attorney can have this charge reduced to an ordinary moving violation.

Fines for non-speed related offenses range from $30 to $1000, and non-moving violations range from $20 to $150. Those fines may double if the violation is made in a highway safety corridor. Court fees are added for every violation.

How Many Points Will Be Added to My License After a Moving Violation?

There are many traffic violations that can result in points being added to your license. Here are some of the most common offenses:

  • Three Point Violations – Improper passing, driving 1 to 9 miles per hour over the speed limit, impeding traffic by driving too slow, turning left on a red light, and disobeying highway signals
  • Four Point Violations – Driving between 10 to 19 miles per hour over the speed limit, passing when unsafe, failing to yield, driving aggressively, and following too closely
  • Six Point Violations – Driving over 20 miles per hour over the speed limit, street racing, passing a school bus, driving without a license, and failing to stop to exchange information after an accident (hit and run)

How Many Points Does it Take to Lose Your Driving Privileges?

Each time you are convicted of committing a traffic offense, you will accrue points on your driving record. These points will stay on your license for two years. However, insurance companies will consider the points for longer than two years, which will result in higher premiums. If you accrue enough points, your license may be suspended or revoked.

How many points you need before you lose your driving privileges depends on your age, the time frame in which the infractions are committed, and the nature of those infractions:

  • Drivers over 19 – Your license may get suspended if you accrue 12 points within 12 months or 18 points within 24 months. However, if you attend a driver improvement clinic within 90 days of reaching your points limit, you can keep your license. When you accrue 18 points within 12 months or 24 points with 24 months, your license will get suspended for at least 90 days. To get your license back, you will need to attend a driver’s education course.
  • Drivers ages 18 and 19 – You will have to attend a driver improvement clinic if you receive any amount of points. A failure to attend will result in the suspension of your license.
  • Drivers under 18 – If you get any points for a violation, you must complete a driver improvement clinic within 90 days and pay a reinstatement fee to retain your license. If you get two traffic violations within a year, your license will be suspended for 90 days. If you get three violations, your license will be suspended for a year or until you are 18 years old.
  • How Can a Roanoke Traffic Offense Lawyer Help?

    At Copenhaver Ellett & Derrico, our goal is to achieve the best case outcome for you under the circumstances. This means ensuring that your rights are respected at every stage of the court process and exploring every possible avenue for defending against your charges. When it comes to traffic infractions, a swift and decisive approach can significantly improve your situation. To learn more about how we can help you specifically, call us today at for a free and confidential consultation of your case.