Criminal Traffic Cases in New York: Misdemeanor or Felony?

Posted: September 22nd, 2019 | Author: | Filed under: Criminal Traffic Cases | Comments Off on Criminal Traffic Cases in New York: Misdemeanor or Felony?

If you’re given a ticket for a traffic infraction, you may not think it’s a big deal. However, even simple traffic violations such as failing to stop and speeding can turn into criminal traffic cases in New York. General infractions and violations only result in paying a fee online and getting points on your license. The only time these instances can turn to criminal traffic cases is if they become a repeat offense or there is damage involved.

Criminal Traffic Cases

That’s why My Tickets NYC recommends that you hire a lawyer for any traffic citation. You never know when a simple mistake can drastically affect your life.

Criminal Traffic Cases in New York

When it comes to traffic offenses, there is a three-tier structure. Here they are in order from the least to the most severe cases:

  1. Traffic Infraction or Violation (not a crime)
  2. Misdemeanor
  3. Felony

The latter two examples are considered criminal traffic cases in New York. These require you to appear in criminal court, although harsher penalties (such as an arrest) may be considered depending on the conditions at the time of the citation.

However, keep in mind that a traffic infraction or violation may be enhanced to a criminal case if there is an injury or death.  

What is Considered a Misdemeanor in NY? Criminal Traffic Cases in New York

Driving without a license and driving with an expired registration require you to show up in court. Failure to do so will result an immediate suspension of your license. In the event that you are pulled over on that suspended license, you next court dealing will be considered a criminal traffic case in New York. Essentially, driving on a suspended license is considered a misdemeanor crime.

Typically, police officers will not place the driver under arrest for a traffic misdemeanor, but it’s not unheard of. The way you react to the situation could influence the outcome of this misdemeanor.

Your license will become suspended with multiple traffic infractions or violations. The most common occurrence we see for a suspended license is being ticketed for speeding multiple times within an 18-month period. This is why it’s important to speak with a criminal traffic lawyer in New York if you have had one or more speeding tickets.

Driving under the influence or driving while intoxicated (note the difference) are both considered misdemeanors. Also depending on the circumstances or driving conditions at the time, a ticket for reckless driving can also count as a misdemeanor.

Penalties for a Misdemeanor in NY

  • Arrest and jail for up to a year
  • Points on your license
  • Increased auto insurance
  • Fines up to $1,000

What is Considered a Felony in NY?

A felony in New York will be defined by its Class (A,B,C,D, or E). Class A felonies are the most severe while Class E felonies can sometimes be negotiated down to a misdemeanor with the right lawyer. Each of these come with their own set of penalties, but you can expect the most severe consequences in any of these cases.

Traffic felonies typically fall under Class E. These can be repeat DUI, repeat DWI’s, or leaving the scene of an accident. Remember, these felonies will be considered more severe with injury or death. Even a traffic infraction such as reckless driving can be considered a felony if the accident results in the death of another person.

Penalties for a Felony in NY

  • Jail for minimum of one year and up to a life sentence
  • Loss of privileges such as voting, firearm possession, and operating licenses
  • Points or revocation of your license

If you think your license may be suspended or if you have committed a traffic misdemeanor or felony, contact My Tickets NYC. Call or text a copy of your traffic ticket(s) to My Tickets NYC at 917-426-2WIN (2946), or complete the e-mail form. My Tickets NYC covers cases in the 5 boros, Upstate NY, Long Island and New Jersey.  For the best New York traffic ticket lawyers that can help relieve you of your traffic ticket problems contact My Tickets NYC for a FREE consultation.