What Punishments Could You Face With A Reckless Driving Charge?

Posted on: 29 December 2016

Vehicles are very dangerous especially when used in the wrong way. If you drive in an unsafe or reckless manner, then this is a crime. A crime occurs when you operate the vehicle in a way that puts other people at risk.

Reckless driving is different from other driving offenses. The charge depends on each individual case. Every state has a list of things that qualify a driver for this offense. If you get charged with this crime, then you could face a significant amount of penalties.

Pay Fines

Fines are a common penalty when convicted of this charge. The amount of your fine depends on your state and the details of your crime. However, fines can range from a couple hundred to a few thousand dollars. The minimum punishment for reckless driving that results in bodily harm in California carries a fine from $220 to $1,000.


If this is your first offense, then the prosecutor may only recommend probation. You must follow certain guidelines while under supervision. While on probation, you must maintain a job, check in with your probation officer, do not get any traffic violations or commit any other crimes. If you violate your probation, then you could face jail time. Your driving history is another factor that determines whether a judge grants you probation.

Suspended License

You face the possibility of getting your license suspended when convicted of this charge. This means losing your license for a minimum of 30 days. If you have previous reckless driving convictions, then you could lose your driver's license for longer than a month.

Jail Time

Reckless driving is considered a misdemeanor. If you are convicted of the crime, then you could face up to a year in jail. Some states consider reckless driving as a felony, which means you face more than a year in prison. It often becomes a felony if someone was hurt.

The penalties listed are some of the punishment you could receive with a conviction. It helps to understand that you may receive more than one penalty. The punishment tends to be harsher if someone is hurt because of your carelessness.

If you are charged with this crime, then it helps to admit to being in the wrong and work to change your behavior. If you find yourself in a situation facing reckless driving charges, find an experienced attorney that handles reckless driving cases for the best outcome.