What is Negligent Driving 1st Degree?
Negligent Driving 1st Degree is a driving related offense that is still a criminal charge. Often times it is negotiated as a reduced charge from a DUI by a lawyer. Next to getting the DUI charge completely dismissed, getting a DUI reduced to Negligent Driving 1st Degree is probably the best deal out there. In some cases, the DUI can be dismissed and the case refiled as a Negligent Driving 1st Degree. This is also a very good deal because it gives you the best chance of getting the Neg 1 vacated off your record. The actual definition of negligent driving 1 is:
RCW 46.61.5249 states A person is guilty of negligent driving in the first degree if he or she operates a motor vehicle in a manner that is both negligent and endangers or is likely to endanger any person or property, and exhibits the effects of having consumed liquor or an illegal drug or exhibits the effects of having inhaled or ingested any chemical, whether or not a legal substance, for its intoxicating or hallucinatory effects.
Will my license get suspended with a Negligent Driving 1st Degree conviction?
No, a Negligent Driving 1st Degree conviction does not carry any license consequences. Meaning if you get arrested for a DUI and your lawyer gets that charge lowered to Negligent Driving 1st Degree then you will not face any license suspensions.
However, if your license was suspended administratively by the DOL and you get offered a Negligent Driving 1st Degree in the criminal case, you will still have to deal with whatever license suspension was imposed by the Department of Licensing.
Does a Negligent Driving 1st Degree conviction require SR22 insurance?
No, if you’re convicted of a Negligent Driving 1st Degree you will not have to carry SR22 insurance. This is one of the benefits of getting a reduced Negligent Driving 1st Degree charge. However, your insurance company will still most likely increase your rates based on this conviction. Additionally, if your license was suspended administratively from the Department of Licensing hearing then you will be required to carry SR22 insurance.
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Will I have to get an ignition interlock device with a Negligent Driving 1?
No, a Negligent Driving 1st Degree does not carry an ignition interlock requirement. Unless you have a prior DUI conviction that was either amended to a lesser charge or convicted as charged within the last 7 years. Then you will be required to carry an ignition interlock device for at least 6 months. If you have a prior DUI arrest and you’re not sure what happened it is best to contact an attorney to find out whether a Negligent Driving 1st Degree conviction will carry any ignition interlock device requirements.
How is a Negligent Driving better than a DUI?
A Negligent Driving 1st Degree is much better than a DUI conviction. For one it does not typically carry the ignition interlock requirements. It does not carry the mandatory jail and fines. There is no license suspension. In addition, a Negligent Driving 1st Degree can potentially be vacated off of one’s record, although nowadays that possibility is becoming less and less likely.
Can I enter into Canada with a Negligent Driving 1?
This is a tricky area of the law. Technically a Negligent Driving 1st Degree conviction in Washington State can prevent you from entering into Canada. Although an experienced lawyer will know some ways to minimize that possibility and try to make it as safe as possible. It is always best to consult a DUI Attorney before making any final decisions especially if international travel plays a factor.