The best way to protect your rights when facing criminal charges is to understand how the legal process works. And one of its most fundamental elements is the category in which a defendant is charged. In North Carolina, as with nearly all jurisdictions, criminal charges come in three main varieties: infractions, misdemeanors, and felonies.
What do these mean for you? How might you approach them differently? And what are your rights as a defendant? Here’s what you need to know.
Driving while intoxicated (DWI) has serious financial, legal, and social consequences. Nevertheless, the prosecutor has a lot to prove when you get arrested for a DWI. With a few tips and a strong defense, you might identify gaps in the prosecution’s evidence and convince the courts to reduce your sentence or drop your charges.
Here are practical tips that can help you beat a DWI charge.
The party at fault for a collision isn’t always straightforward. Many states have complicated systems for assigning responsibility and can allocate a percentage of blame to each party. Find out more about the process of determining car accident fault below.
Why Is It Important to Identify the At-Fault Driver?
In most states, the party responsible for an auto accident pays the other driver for damages. Therefore, insurance companies must identify the at-fault driver to know who covers the injured party’s damages.
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.
Car accidents can be traumatic and may quickly take a toll on your physical, mental, and financial well-being. Luckily, while you cannot reverse things to their pre-accident state, you can seek compensation to help you take care of the financial aspects of the accident. But what happens if the insurer asks for your driving records? Discover how your driving history can impact your personal injury claim.
The Insurer May Claim You Are the At-Fault Driver
The insurer may use your driving records to judge your driving habits and even implicate you as the at-fault driver in the accident. For example, suppose you have a record of traffic violations such as speeding, tailgating, or running stop signs. In this case, the insurer could argue that since you had a history of risky driving behavior leading up to the accident, these habits likely caused the present crash.
When vehicles collide, one common consequence is injuries to the drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. The severity and type of injury depend on the structure, size, and weight of the automobile. These injuries can be devastating and require extensive medical costs.
Discover common types of injuries that can arise from road accidents.
With the penalties and consequences of a conviction hanging over your head, a criminal charge may be a daunting experience. The key thing to remember is that you are legally innocent until proven guilty.
Even so, every step you take will influence the outcome of your case. Therefore, regardless of why you’re facing a criminal charge, make sure you don’t make any mistakes that could negatively impact the case.
The following are some mistakes you’ll want to avoid making to increase your odds of a successful outcome.
Failing to Seek Legal Representation
You may want to wait until you are sure you need a lawyer before hiring one. When facing criminal charges, however, you need all the help you can get.
You probably shudder at the thought of hitting a pedestrian, another car, or someone’s personal property with your car. When that nightmare scenario occurs, you must remain at the scene and offer whatever assistance you can. If you flee the scene, the authorities may charge you with a hit and run offense.
The more you understand about this crime, from the law’s definition of it to the potential defenses against it, the more effectively you and your attorney can work together to prepare your case. Check out the following frequently asked questions about hit and run offenses.
When you receive a traffic ticket, you should either admit guilt and plan to pay the fine or go to traffic court and contest the ticket in front of a judge. You might brush off a traffic ticket as a minor offense. After all, the police won’t come to your home to hunt you down over unpaid traffic tickets.
However, unpaid traffic tickets can lead to more severe legal problems. Read on to discover four possible consequences of failing to pay traffic tickets.
Wherever you see automotive traffic, you may also see a police officer writing a ticket for some driver who apparently committed some sort of violation. Traffic tickets may help to discourage reckless driving and accidents, but in some cases the driver may have justification for fighting the violation in court.
If you find yourself sitting in the driver’s seat as a police officer writes you a traffic ticket, you may wonder how (or whether) you can contest it instead of paying a hefty fine and watching your auto insurance rates go up. The following questions and answers may help you understand your legal options and strategies in these situations.