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4 Common Traffic Violations and Their Consequences

Driver Looking at the Police Motorcycle Officer in the Side Mirror — Fayetteville, NC — Britt Carl L Jr

Different types of traffic violations can result in a law enforcement officer pulling over a driver and ticketing them. Some of these violations may not be on purpose, but if a driver doesn’t pay attention, some violations can be easy to commit on accident. Unfortunately, even if a traffic violation is on accident, the driver often has to deal with the consequences.


Speeding is probably the most common and well-known traffic violation. Speeding occurs when a driver travels over the speed limit. Some police officers can be lenient by a few miles per hour, but in North Carolina, a driver can be given a speeding ticket for going a single mile per hour over the limit.

The faster a driver travels over the speed limit, the more the speeding ticket will cost. Speeding tickets can range from $150 to $1,000 depending on how far over the speed limit the driver traveled. If a driver receives a speeding ticket, points may go onto their driving record. If a driver accumulates enough points on their driving record, the driver’s car insurance rates may go up or the driver could have a suspended license.

Reckless Driving

Reckless driving is driving that is careless and disregards the safety of the other drivers on the road. One way to receive a reckless driving ticket is if a driver travels too far over the posted speed limit.

In North Carolina, a driver can receive a reckless driving ticket for some of the following behaviors:

  • Illegal passing
  • Excessive swerving
  • Racing
  • Running a red light or stop sign
  • Driving at least 15 miles per hour over the speed limit 
  • Tailgating

Reckless driving is one of the more serious traffic violations because driving recklessly not only endangers the driver at fault but also the other drivers on the road. The consequences of reckless driving can leave a driver with a $1,000 fine, 60 days in jail, a misdemeanor on the driver’s criminal record, and points on the driver’s driving record.

Driving Without a Valid Driver’s License

Drivers may not be aware of them, but the circumstances in which a driver could be guilty of driving without a license are more extensive than anyone may realize. 

The following instances can leave a driver with a misdemeanor, suspended or revoked license, large fine, and jail time:

  • Driving while never having received a license
  • Driving with a suspended or revoked license
  • Presenting a fake license at a traffic stop 
  • Letting an unlicensed person operate your vehicle

The less serious instances that can leave a driver with a small fine and points on the driver’s driving record can include: 

  • Driving with an expired license 
  • Not updating your license after moving to a new state
  • Not having a valid driver’s license present at the time of a traffic stop

If a driver moves to North Carolina from a different state, they have a short period of time to update their driver’s license from their old state to North Carolina.

Hit and Run 

Despite what many commonly believe, a hit and run does not only occur when a driver hits another person or car. Hit and runs also include hitting someone’s property. Hit and runs are very serious, especially if it leaves a person with an injury or dead.

If a driver hits a person and flees the scene, they could receive a felony, a 4-to-41-month prison sentence (the length of the sentence will depend on the injuries the other party has), a large fine, and points on the driver’s driving record.

Hitting and damaging someone’s property is a little less severe because the driver did not physically hurt anyone. If the hit and run a driver committed only resulted in property damage, they could receive a misdemeanor, up to 120 days in jail, and a fine.

If you find yourself in trouble due to a traffic violation and you are not sure about your next steps, contact us at Carl L Britt, Jr., Attorney at Law, for a free consultation. We will do everything in our power to help you.

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    Fayetteville, NC 28301