There are different instances where what one might consider a traffic violation is actually a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor requires you to answer the ticket in criminal court. The two most common examples that we see are driving with a suspended license, and driving with a suspended or expired registration. For instance, if you fail to appear to answer a ticket and your license gets suspended as a result, then in the event that you are pulled over again, you will receive a ticket for driving with a suspended license (aggravated unlicensed operator). Driving with a suspended license is considered a misdemeanor and can come with pretty severe consequences. Other traffic misdemeanors that are criminal in nature include driving while intoxicated, or driving while impaired by drugs. In some instances, reckless driving can be considered a misdemeanor as opposed to a traffic infraction.
Are People Arrested for a Traffic Misdemeanor?
In some instances, people are arrested for traffic misdemeanors. In most DWI cases, the drivers are placed under arrest, taken to the station, and booked as they would be in any other type of criminal case. In instances where the misdemeanor is for something like driving with a suspended license or registration, the driver can be arrested, although some officers use their discretion and do not place the driver under arrest. Instead, they will issue the ticket and give them the opportunity to show up in court on the assigned date.
Do any Traffic Violations Automatically Fall off Your Record After a Certain Period of Time?
The points on your record usually fall off after three years.
How Many Points Lead to a Suspension? how Serious is it?
If a driver gets 11 points in an 18-month period, their license to drive in New York is automatically suspended. So, it can be very serious. There are other ways that your license can be suspended as well. For example, failing to answer a summons or failing to pay fines and surcharges either to the court that you are assigned in, or to the DMV, can lead to a suspension. Also, if you get three speeding convictions within an 18-month period, your license in New York will be suspended.
What can Enhance a Traffic Misdemeanor Charge to a Felony Traffic Charge?
There are many crimes that can be committed while driving a car. We often see criminal cases that go together with traffic infractions. For example, if someone is pulled over for speeding and the officer determines that the driver is intoxicated or under the influence of drugs, that driver will likely be issued both a speeding ticket and a DWI ticket, the latter of which is a crime. If a person is arrested for DWI within ten years of having had a prior DWI conviction, that second DWI may be considered a felony, which comes with much more significant consequences.
Additional Information About Traffic Offenses in New York
In general, clients do not tend to consider traffic violations as being very serious. However, traffic violations can come with serious consequences, so you want to be careful. That’s why it makes sense to seek out the advice of an attorney before you make any decisions about how to handle your traffic violation.