When a person gets their driver’s license, they are required to follow the laws of the road. Any driver who violates these laws can put themselves and others on the road at risk for involvement in a serious accident. That being said, if you are caught doing so, you will receive a traffic violation. The consequences of traffic violations can vary depending on the type of offense and the circumstances surrounding it. Some of the consequences you may face can include fines, points on your driving record, surcharges, and even the loss of your license in some cases. The Law Offices of Debra A. Saltz has experience defending clients who are facing these situations. Contact our firm today to discuss your case.
What is a “Must-Appear” Traffic Offense?
In Maryland, one of the two types of traffic offenses is “must-appear” offenses. Individuals facing these charges cannot simply pay fines. Instead, they are required to appear in court on the date and time listed on the notice received in the mail. There is a potential to be incarcerated for these offenses. Examples of these crimes can include but are not limited to the following:
- Fleeing and evading the police
- Leaving the scene of an accident,
- Driving with a suspended or revoked license
- Driving without a license
What are the Penalties of Traffic Offenses?
There are three types of charges a person can face when dealing with traffic violations in Maryland: traffic infractions, misdemeanors, or felonies. The penalties a person may face if they are charged with any of the previously listed must-appear offenses can include:
- DUI/DWI: A DWI can result in fines up to $500, jail time, and eight points on a driving record. A DUI can result in fines up to $2000, jail time, and 12 points on a driving record.
- Fleeing and evading the police: This is punishable by a maximum of one year in jail and a fine of $1000. If the act causes harm to another person, this may increase to a maximum of three years in jail.
- Leaving the scene of an accident: Damaging property and leaving the scene can result in up to 60 days in jail, a fine up to $500, and up to eight points on a driving record. Causing bodily harm to a person and leaving the scene can result in felony charges, prison time up to five years, and a $5000 fine. If the accident causes a fatality, the driver can face felony manslaughter, up to 10 years in prison, and up to $10,000 in fines.
- Driving with a suspended license: This can result in up to one year in jail, a maximum $1000 fine, and up to 12 points on a driving record.
- Driving with a revoked license: This can result in up to one year in jail, a maximum $1000 fine, 12 points on a driving record, and a longer loss of driving privileges.
- Driving without a license: This can result in a maximum penalty of 60 days and/or a $500 fine.
What is Maryland’s Traffic Law Point System?
All traffic ticket convictions are reported to the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA). When this happens, the MVA assigns a certain number of points on a person’s driving record depending on the severity of the violation they committed. When a driver accumulates enough points, they can face certain penalties such as a warning, mandatory enrollment in a Driver Improvement Program, a license suspension, or license revocation. Some examples of the Maryland traffic law point system are as follows:
- Speeding – 1 to 5 points, depending on how fast the driver was going over the speed limit
- Reckless Driving – 6 points
- Driving without proof of insurance – 5 points
- Driving without a license – 5 points
- Driving with a suspended license – 3 points
- Improper turn – 1 point
- Failure to yield – 1 point
Can a Traffic Infraction Conviction Be Appealed?
When a driver is convicted of a traffic infraction in the state of Maryland, they have the right to appeal the decision within 30 days of the trial date. These appeals will occur in the Maryland Circuit Courts. The case will go to the circuit court of the county where the violation occurred. Fees for filing an appeal are non-refundable.
Contact our Firm
The Law Offices of Debra A. Saltz serves Maryland clients as they face a wide variety of traffic violations. Our experienced attorneys will investigate the circumstances of your charges to work towards downgrading the consequences or having the charges dismissed entirely. If you need our legal services, do not hesitate to contact the Law Offices of Debra A. Saltz today to speak with a knowledgeable attorney.