“I Just Got a North Carolina Traffic Ticket for Racing. What’s Going to Happen to My NC License and Insurance?”
There are two offenses in North Carolina Traffic Law that relate to racing on a public street or highway (statutorily dubbed a speed competition). The penalties involved in racing are serious and being caught can become very expensive for the driver. With car seizure and years of license suspensions in the balance, a person cited for racing should immediately seek legal counsel.
The first of the two NC offenses is prearranged racing. As the name suggests, prearranged racing involves some level of planning or forethought. The NC statute does not specify the level of planning that makes a race “prearranged,” but street racing that goes on at a set location certainly qualifies. Under NC traffic law prearranged racing is a Class 1 Misdemeanor and can involve jail time.
While jail time is rare for a first time offense, the racer is subjected to some stiff penalties. The first of which is immediate and serious. Any time an officer makes an arrest for prearranged racing, the officer seizes the car that was used.
If the racer is convicted of prearranged racing the car is sold at auction and the proceeds go to the local NC county school board. Additionally, if convicted, the racer has his North Carolina driving privilege revoked for three years by the North Carolina DMV. To make matters worse, the driver receives twelve insurance points, which translates into a four hundred percent surcharge on their insurance. This is the same surcharge that applies to DWI in North Carolina or manslaughter resulting from driving.
Interestingly, allowing your car to be used in such a competition or even just betting on such a competition is illegal and you can be convicted of the same offense as a racer for such conduct. If a person lends his or her car for a race it will be seized even though the owner was not driving it.
The second of the two offenses is willful racing. Willful racing occurs when two drivers race spontaneously, and is typically what a driver is charged with when he or she races out of a stop light or on an interstate.
Under NC traffic law willful racing is a Class 2 Misdemeanor and carries a less severe penalty of up to one year of license suspension. A person’s car is not seized upon a conviction for willful racing. The insurance increase is less severe as well when compared to prearranged racing. However, at ten insurance points this violation will give you a three hundred percent surcharge on your insurance which can be very expensive.
The Charlotte traffic lawyers of Rosensteel Fleishman, PLLC are well versed in North Carolina traffic law. We understand that it is not just a NC traffic ticket, it’s also your license and insurance premium.
Call today at: (704) 714-1450 to make an appointment to speak with an attorney, or stop by the office during regular business hours. We provide our clients with upfront pricing as well as the ability to pay over the phone. We will work with you to schedule an appointment that meets your needs. If you have any questions please contact a Charlotte traffic attorney of Rosensteel Fleishman, PLLC.