Philadelphia Criminal Traffic Violations Attorney
A traffic violation may not sound like a big deal, but it can have a significant impact on your life. Even if you receive a summary offense–the least serious category of criminal infraction–you will acquire points on your license, face a possible suspension, and have to pay fines. For more serious offenses, you may face the prospect of jail time and a permanent criminal record. For these reasons, you should hire a skilled and experienced Philadelphia criminal defense attorney to protect your rights.
In Pennsylvania, criminal traffic violations range from driving with a suspended license to homicide with a vehicle. Each type of offense carries its specific penalties and may require a different approach for the successful defense of your case. While each case is different, on thing is always true: you should never plead guilty to an offense before consulting with a lawyer.
What Kinds of Traffic Violation Cases Does Fienman Defense Handle?
At Fienman Defense, we have extensive experience defending traffic violations for our clients, including:
- Driving under suspension — In Pennsylvania, this is treated as a summary offense involving a fine of up to $200. But for a second offense, you can be fined up to $1,000 and face a possible jail sentence. And if your original suspension was due to a drunk driving conviction, you will receive a minimum $500 fine and a 60 to 90 day jail sentence. You may be charged with driving with a suspended license even if you weren’t actually driving–the authorities just need to prove that you were in control of the vehicle.
- Driving without a license — It’s illegal to drive a vehicle on the Commonwealth’s roads without a valid driver’s license. If convicted of this summary offense, you may have to pay a fine of up to $200. You may avoid this penalty if you produce your driver’s license within 15 days of the offense, or if you can prove that it was lost, destroyed or stolen at the time.
- Reckless driving — Pennsylvania law defines reckless driving as driving with willful or wanton disregard for other people’s safety. This means driving in a way that you know will likely result in injury or property damage, such as tailgating, speeding excessively, or weaving between traffic. This offense carries a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail, fines of up to $200, and a possible license suspension.
- Leaving the scene of an accident — If you are involved in an accident that causes damage to another vehicle or property, you must stop your vehicle near to the accident scene and exchange information with the other driver(s). Failing to do so is a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail. And if someone is injured in the accident, you must render reasonable assistance to the injured person and call for help. Failing to do is a serious crime, which may be charged as a felony.
- Fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer — If you intentionally fail to pull over for a police officer who has signaled you with sirens, emergency lights, voice instructions, or hand gestures, you may be charged with a misdemeanor of the second degree. If you engage in a high-speed chase or cross state lines, you may face felony charges.
- Drag racing — Pennsylvania law defines drag racing as two vehicles competing side-by-side over speed and acceleration. But you may also be charged with drag racing if you are racing against the clock, such as trying to beat the record for a hill climb. Even spectators may get charged. Drag racing is punishable by hefty fines and the suspension of your driver’s license.
- Homicide by vehicle — If you drive recklessly or commit a traffic infraction that results in someone’s death, you may face third-degree felony charges punishable by up to seven years in prison and fines of up to $15,000. A DUI resulting in death; however, is a separate offense.
- Aggravated assault by vehicle — Under Pennsylvania law, aggravated assault by vehicle consists in causing a serious injury while committing a traffic infraction or driving recklessly. Injuries caused by drunk driving, however, are handled under a different law. If convicted of vehicular assault, you may face a maximum penalty of 7 years in prison and fines of up to $15,000.
How Can Fienman Defense Help?
As a Philadelphia criminal traffic violation lawyer, Michael Fienman is committed to achieving the best possible result under your circumstances. Attorney Fienman will review the prosecutor’s evidence and determine whether any of it may be removed from the case. Then, he will attempt to demonstrate that the remaining evidence against you does not show beyond a reasonable doubt that you are guilty. In some cases, however, it may be in your interest to plead guilty, in which case attorney Fienman will negotiate with the prosecutor to obtain a favorable arrangement.
For more information on how Fienman Defense can help, call us at (215) 839-9529 today for a free and confidential case consultation.
Questions? Contact us today.
Based on the evidence, Fienman Defense will try to get your traffic violation charges dismissed or lowered. Should the case go to a hearing or trial, we will fight to present the strongest defense possible for your situation.