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Traffic Lawyer

Those who have been arrested and charged with a DUI, may be able to get their charge decreased to a wet reckless. The prosecution may offer this plea bargain to the accused for a number of reasons. Perhaps the prosecution is worried they don’t have strong evidence, or the person arrested is a first-time offender of any kind of driving offense. Either way, it is important to understand the difference between these two charges, so if someone is offered the wet reckless they are aware of what this means for them.

One of the best things a person can do for themselves after being arrested for a DUI charge, is to meet with a traffic lawyer in Wytheville, VA about how to get their charge decreased to a wet reckless. This can benefit both their freedom, finances, and future. 

Wet Reckless Defined

Wet reckless is not usually a charge that a person can be arrested for from the start. In most cases, it is a DUI charge that becomes reduced to wet reckless if a plea agreement is accepted. Reckless driving in itself is a misdemeanor offense that includes unsafe driving that was intentional and risked the safety of others nearby. With “wet” added to a reckless driving charge, this means the person was operating the vehicle with alcohol involved. 

Difference Between Wet Reckless and DUI

There are several differences between being charged with a DUI or wet reckless. Firstly, a wet reckless is not a DUI and will probably not result in the same level of consequences as a DUI conviction. This is especially true when it comes to employers or licensing agencies, since there is plenty of stigma against those who have DUI convictions on their record. Upon a background check, the weight of a wet reckless is often much lighter than that of a DUI. 

A DUI conviction is likely to result in an automatic suspension of driver’s license, when a wet reckless charge may not. Depending on the state and county you live in, DMV may still issue an order to have the license suspended regardless of what is decided in court. First-time offenders of a DUI may have their license taken away for four months or longer, and may be permitted to request a restricted license after a 30-day complete suspension. Lastly, those with a DUI conviction may have to install an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) into their vehicle. 

Wet reckless offenders typically do not have to install an IID into their car. However, the person is probably going to have two points added to his or her driving record. Those with “good driver” discounts from an insurance company may lose that standing, resulting in steeper monthly premiums. The fines for wet reckless are in most circumstances much lower than a DUI charge, and if jail time is required it is commonly less. The maximum jail time for wet reckless is around 90 days. But then for DUI offenders, they may be sentenced to six months or more behind bars. 

Thanks to The Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt for their insight into criminal defense and DUI vs. wet reckless charges.