How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

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moose
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby moose » Wed May 27, 2009 3:45 pm

LawandOrder wrote:
Tave wrote:
LawandOrder wrote:Virginia has some of the harshest traffic penalties in the country. My condolences.


Haha. I participate on an auto-related message forum, and I remember that came up awhile ago. I believe the latest move by the State legislature--setting speeding fines higher for Virginia residents than out-of-state drivers--was recently ruled unconstitutional by the State supreme court.


I'm a Maryland resident and also frequent car and motorcycle forums. I know exactly what you mean. I hate driving through VA. They make you feel like you've murdered someone just because you're going over 80 :roll:


Haha,...seriously,....the deputy treated me like a rapist I kid you not. My brother was with me and the way he talked to us was ridiculous. Arlington county sheriffs are some serious D-bags.

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98234872348
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby 98234872348 » Wed May 27, 2009 3:46 pm

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Last edited by 98234872348 on Thu May 19, 2011 12:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

broncos06
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby broncos06 » Wed May 27, 2009 3:51 pm

mistergoft wrote:Oh my lord. Any traffic citation that counts as a misdemeanor rather than an infraction is considered a crime in the general sense and should be disclosed. Virginia, while having insufferable traffic laws, is not the only state where going over a certain speed is considered "reckless driving" and you should be weary that most if not all state bar character and fitness sections qualify that an individual can be denied admission from the bar for lying on a law school application. I wouldn't want to waste money investing in law school only to find out that I could be denied admission over a technicality, especially over something so trivial as speeding...


The issue isn't whether it is a "crime", but whether it is a "minor traffic violation" or not. As LawandOrder said, because "Minor" is an ambigious term and reckless driving seems to fall somewhere in the middle, no one is going to accuse you of lying because you considered reckless driving to be a minor traffic violation.

If your as scared about it as mistergoft is, you might as well put it down so that you don't disrupt your night's sleep.

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Rocinante
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby Rocinante » Wed May 27, 2009 6:14 pm

It really depends on your application man. How they word the C&F questions means everything. On mine, it asks you to list any "major" traffic violations which includes DUI and anything that can/did result in the loss of or suspension of your license. "Major" is therefore defined as an offense that could potentially result in the loss of your license. I had a reckless driving for running a stop light. Didn't list it. All I had to do was go to traffic school for it and didn't even receive any points on my license. Almost all traffic violations, including speeding tickets, are technically "misdemeanor" offenses. Some schools don't require you to list them and say so explicitly.

In any case. I don't imagine that this will have a significant effect on your admissions cycle. Disclose it if the C&F questions on the application corner you, but otherwise I wouldn't.

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Rocinante
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby Rocinante » Wed May 27, 2009 6:19 pm

mistergoft wrote:Oh my lord. Any traffic citation that counts as a misdemeanor rather than an infraction is considered a crime in the general sense and should be disclosed. Virginia, while having insufferable traffic laws, is not the only state where going over a certain speed is considered "reckless driving" and you should be weary that most if not all state bar character and fitness sections qualify that an individual can be denied admission from the bar for lying on a law school application. I wouldn't want to waste money investing in law school only to find out that I could be denied admission over a technicality, especially over something so trivial as speeding...


Man, it's a lot harder to get denied admission to the bar than some people on here let on. The notion that a review board can shaft you at the end of 3 years and 100k+ dollars is scary, so I am not surprised that there is a lot of concern over it. But, really, if you all actually go look at the types of cases where people are actually denied your going to find out that something trivial is not going to keep you out. Speeding tickets, dorm room alcohol violations, etc, this is a big stress pot that has little tangible value to you or the C&F committee.

When determining the consequences of any admissions, they always consider the materiality and relevance of the admission. A speeding ticket four years ago, or a bud light stuffed under the bed in your dorm room likely isn't going to sway their opinion. The big concern here is that you aren't going to lie to your clients or cheat them out of money or assets. If something you have done makes that a question, then I would worry, and definitely list it. Apart from that, let's not get carried away.

I'm not advocating that you just pick and choose what you feel like you should list based on what you feel is "material" but if there is some guesswork involved and you decide not to disclose I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.

Elben
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby Elben » Mon Aug 23, 2010 6:26 am

Reckless driving and DUI or DWI offenses are separate crimes. Reckless driving isn't a lesser-included offense of DUI or DWI because each crime is separate and distinct and can be proved by different evidence. Reckless driving involves how a vehicle was being operated; it isn't necessary to show that the driver used drugs or alcohol to prove a violation of a reckless driving law. In a prosecution for DUI or DWI, on the other hand, how the vehicle was being operated might tend to show that the driver was impaired, but it's not a necessary ingredient of the offense. Speeding is a very common moving violation. Reckless driving and vehicular manslaughter are two driving convictions that may arise from a single incident. There is also a number of crimes that involve the use of intoxicating substances and driving. In many instances, to determine which convictions are possible or how they are characterized, a person has to familiarize herself with local law since regulations tend to vary.
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rdcws000
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby rdcws000 » Mon Aug 23, 2010 9:07 am

1. You will not get rejected from a law school or the bar for a disclosed reckless driving.

2. You could very well be kicked out of law school after already beginning classes and paying tuition, or later denied by the bar for attempting to hide this misdemeanor.

2a. Then you would feel very very dumb, for trying to hide something so insignificant.

whymeohgodno
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby whymeohgodno » Mon Aug 23, 2010 9:26 am

rdcws000 wrote:1. You will not get rejected from a law school or the bar for a disclosed reckless driving.

2. You could very well be kicked out of law school after already beginning classes and paying tuition, or later denied by the bar for attempting to hide this misdemeanor.

2a. Then you would feel very very dumb, for trying to hide something so insignificant.


This.

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kalvano
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby kalvano » Mon Aug 23, 2010 9:48 am

moose wrote:
Cleareyes wrote:Most schools require misdemeanor disclosure. Tell the truth, be contrite, explain what you learned, it probably won't have much effect.


Do you think I should really explain "what I learned",...I'm not sure I learned anything. I was speeding,...thats it.


This whole debate is ridiculous.

All you need to do is say "I got a ticket for xxxx. It was xxx."

You don't need to be contrite or explain anything.

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dood
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby dood » Mon Aug 23, 2010 9:51 am

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Last edited by dood on Sun Aug 29, 2010 6:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Thomas Jefferson
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby Thomas Jefferson » Mon Aug 23, 2010 10:17 am

whymeohgodno wrote:
rdcws000 wrote:1. You will not get rejected from a law school or the bar for a disclosed reckless driving.

2. You could very well be kicked out of law school after already beginning classes and paying tuition, or later denied by the bar for attempting to hide this misdemeanor.

2a. Then you would feel very very dumb, for trying to hide something so insignificant.


This.

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Knock
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby Knock » Mon Aug 23, 2010 12:32 pm

I think it's hard to buy the argument that a reckless driving conviction, regardless if it was "just" for speeding, is a minor traffic violation. It's not going to hurt you much, if at all, so be safe and disclose it if the language is worded, "disclose everything except minor traffic violations."

Minor traffic violations are generally held to be speeding tickets, parking tickets, failure to stop, etc.; things of a comparable nature. Reckless driving is definitely in a tier above in terms of seriousness.

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vanwinkle
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby vanwinkle » Mon Aug 23, 2010 1:21 pm

Elben wrote:Spam

Banned.

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vanwinkle
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby vanwinkle » Mon Aug 23, 2010 1:28 pm

Knockglock wrote:I think it's hard to buy the argument that a reckless driving conviction, regardless if it was "just" for speeding, is a minor traffic violation. It's not going to hurt you much, if at all, so be safe and disclose it if the language is worded, "disclose everything except minor traffic violations."

Minor traffic violations are generally held to be speeding tickets, parking tickets, failure to stop, etc.; things of a comparable nature. Reckless driving is definitely in a tier above in terms of seriousness.

This.

rdcws000 wrote:1. You will not get rejected from a law school or the bar for a disclosed reckless driving.

2. You could very well be kicked out of law school after already beginning classes and paying tuition, or later denied by the bar for attempting to hide this misdemeanor.

2a. Then you would feel very very dumb, for trying to hide something so insignificant.


And this.

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Stanford4Me
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby Stanford4Me » Mon Aug 23, 2010 1:33 pm

Do not explain "what you learned" from the situation. I feel like AdComs would :roll: if you wrote some essay about it.

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Maven
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby Maven » Mon Aug 23, 2010 1:36 pm

You stated that you guess officially that its a misdemeanor. Don't assume that this is true. Were you subject to up to a year in jail for your transgression? You need to look at the specific statutory classification before drawing any conclusions.

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mountaintime
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby mountaintime » Mon Aug 23, 2010 5:54 pm

Read your applications closely; different schools ask different questions. Unless this happened last week, it probably won't be much of an issue. The real issue is being totally honest and fully disclosing this information to any law schools that ask for it. This incident won't affect your cycle much if at all.

reverendt
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby reverendt » Mon Nov 15, 2010 11:12 pm

I'm going to revive this thread due to my current situation as a 3L.
Like the OP I had a reckless driving in VA in 2003. My law school application in 2007 asked if I had any crime...blah blah blah....and says "do NOT include summary (minor) motor vehicle violations that resulted in a ticket (citation)."

Perhaps foolishly, I did not include the VA citation. It was certainly an honest mistake.
It does say "summary" violations, and NOW I know that summary is a legal term which means NOT misdemeanor, but I did not know that 3 years ago. I've never been in trouble except for traffic tickets, so I wrote nothing.
I go to school in PA and I've done a little research. The PA Bar Application describes serious traffic violations as "fleeing the scene of an accident, homicide by vehicle, fleeing and eluding police, excessive speed (100+ mph), etc." Nothing about reckless driving.
Widener law school (with campuses in PA and DE) describes a "minor" traffic violation as one that does not require a court appearance. (My ticket in VA did not require an appearance). (I don't go to Widener but google turned up their definition.)
The issue seems to turn, for me, on the inclusion of the word "summary," which I was unfamiliar with prior to law school.
Given the PA Bar application and the Widener website, I'd say my mistake was certainly reasonable, if naive. What do you all think?
I HAVE brought this matter to the attention of the dean of my school. He is unsure if reckless driving should have been listed or not. He is looking into it.
The fact that the dean is uncertain seems to indicate the ambiguity here. Do you really think the bar will screw me for screwing up an issue even the law school dean is unclear on?
Any thoughts?

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northwood
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Re: How does misdemeanor reckless driving affect my apps

Postby northwood » Mon Nov 15, 2010 11:51 pm

call each school for clarification. Talk to the dean and explain the situtation. If you are nervous, call a school that you are not applying and ask.( consider it a practice run. who knows you may even decide to apply there the next go around)

i would say that if you have questions, go ahead and disclose. Even if you find out later that you didnt, i think it would be wiser to error on the side of caution. I dont know how disclosing affects your application. best of luck




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