What to do if you’re charged with reckless driving after an accident
It is scary and stressful being charged with reckless driving after an accident. Find out what will happen and how you should respond.
Being involved in accident is traumatic enough, but when you are (or could have been) the cause if the accident, it’s even more stressful – and important you follow the correct procedures.
If you have been charged with reckless driving after an accident, here are the steps that you need to follow.
1) Stay calm and take safety precautions
Your actions as soon as an accident happens are important. Stay as calm as you can and check that everyone is safe. If you can, move your vehicle to a safe place, switch on your hazard lights, then check yourself and others for injuries. If necessary, call emergency services.
2) Cooperate with law enforcement
If law enforcement officers attend the scene, cooperate with them and give them any necessary information. However, don’t make any statements that might be interpreted as admissions of guilt. Just stick to the facts as you know them. If you aren’t certain about something, say you don’t know.
3) Get information on any charges against you
After assessing the situation, the attending law enforcement officers may decide to charge you with reckless driving. If so, make sure you understand exactly what they are charging you with and the potential consequences. While reckless driving charges may vary, they usually involve a willful disregard for safety, excessive speeding, or aggressive driving behavior.
4) Gather evidence
If it is possible to do so safely, document the scene of the accident. This can involve:
- Taking photographs of the vehicles involved
- Taking photos of the surrounding area
- Taking photos of any relevant road signs or signals
- Collecting the contact information of any witnesses
5) Speak to an attorney
If you are charged with reckless driving it is important to speak to experienced attorney who specializes in traffic offenses, such as a Maryland reckless driving accident attorney, as soon as you can. Make sure you share any evidence you have gathered from the scene with them.
Your attorney will explain your rights, your potential defenses, and advise you on your the best course of action. If you wish they can also help you navigate the legal process and even advocate on your behalf.
6) Review the police report
Ask for a copy of the police report detailing the incident and carefully review it. Check it for accuracy and completeness, and if you notice any inaccuracies or discrepancies bring them to the attention of your lawyer. They may be helpful when building a defense.
7) Consider your options
Consider your options and their implications on your driving record. In some cases, your attorney may be able to negotiate a lesser charge or recommend that you take part in defensive driving courses to mitigate the consequences.
8) Get ready for legal proceedings
If your case goes to court, you’ll need to present your side of the story. Your attorney will help you navigate the legal process and build a strong defense. Make sure you attend any required court dates and follow your attorney’s advice.