In Virginia, there are three different types of traffic violations: infractions, misdemeanors, and felonies.
Traffic infractions are violations of Title 46.2 of the Code of Virginia that is not sanctioned as minor crimes or criminal offenses but are typical traffic tickets. It is a lien for a non-criminal misbehavior that is resolved with the payment of a fine and sometimes a sanction of points in the driver’s license.
Unlike a misdemeanor or criminal offense, an offense is less severe and only causes fines, while a misdemeanor or criminal offense would surely involve a prison and an impact on your criminal record. Moreover, the penalties for an infraction eventually disappear, however, a misdemeanor or criminal offense (if there is a conviction) will remain a criminal antecedent forever.
Some examples of offense include:
Lack of a headlight or rear
Failure to fully stop at a red light before a turn to the right
Failure to stop at a red light
Very close rear tracking
Where are traffic infractions processed in Virginia?
Traffic infractions are handled in the district court in Virginia. Most can be pre-paid, which means that the person can also pay the fine without having to appear in court.
Can a traffic ticket be appealed?
Any case that is processed in the district’s general court can be appealed within ten calendar days. The appeal determines that the case is heard. This means that there will be a new trial as if the first trial had never taken place.
Minor Traffic Crimes
In Virginia, there are several traffic violations that are also considered misdemeanors. The most commons are:
Driving with a driver’s license that is no longer valid
Driving without a license
The difference is that a misdemeanor can result in imprisonment and also appear in the criminal record while a violation is simply a violation of the public code and not a violation of criminal level. However, such as traffic infractions, misdemeanors are also processed in the General District Court.
Can a conviction for a misdemeanor be appealed?
There is an absolute right of appeal within ten calendar days in the district general court, which is where these cases are processed. The process of appeal is simple; it only requires filling out a form and presenting it to the office of the Secretary of the General District Court. The case is delivered to a new judge in the Circuit Court for a new trial, where the proceedings are initiated as if the first trial had never taken place.
What are the probable penalties in a traffic misdemeanor?
Because it is a transgression of a misdemeanor, the possible penalties include:
Suspension of driver’s license
The severity of the penalty will depend on the nature of the accusation, the history and background of the defendant, and the circumstances surrounding the event.
Criminal Crimes of Traffic
Criminal offenses are the most serious crimes in the Virginia system. The penalties are more severe than those of misdemeanors and infractions, and the conviction takes place in a correctional institution and not in a Virginia county jail. Because it is a crime with a criminal conviction, it is also registered in the person’s criminal record forever.
Examples of Criminal Traffic Crimes
A third violation for drunkenness (DUI), run over with flight when there are victims, or property damage of a thousand dollars or more, are some of the criminal offenses.
After the court filing and the preliminary trial procedures, which take place in the district’s general court, cases of criminal offenses take place in the Circuit Court.
Can a conviction for a criminal traffic crime be appealed?
You have the right to appeal, but only if there has been an error in the legal process. Unlike an appeal from the General District Court, an appeal by the Circuit Court, which is where criminal charges are prosecuted, will not be accepted just because someone disagrees with the outcome of your case.
It is also not a simple process since you and your lawyer will have to prove that an error has been made during the initial trial. Appeals from the General Court are made through a Petition to the Court of Appeals of Virginia. An appeal notice must be filed within thirty calendar days of the date of the conviction.