Arizona classifies speeding into one of two categories: civil or criminal. Whereas civil penalties are fairly minor, criminal speeding is a class 3 misdemeanor that comes with a variety of minimum penalties, as well as the potential for jail time and fines.
When Does Speeding Become Criminal?
There are four main instances when speeding becomes criminal in Arizona:
- Exceeding the posted speed limit in a business or residential area by 20 mph or more
- Exceeding 85 mph anywhere
- Exceeding 35 mph in a school zone
- Exceeding 45 mph in a business or residential area with no posted speed limit
A driver pulled over for any of these reasons may face criminal speeding charges. You might also face secondary charges, such as reckless driving.
Arizona does not have a felony speeding classification. However, you may face felony charges if also accused of a felony offense at the time, such as DUI.
What Are the Penalties for Criminal Speeding?
The maximum penalties for a class 3 misdemeanor include a maximum sentence of 30 days in jail and maximum fines of $500. In addition, you receive three points against your Arizona driver’s license. You face license suspension if you receive more than 13 points in a single year.
You may also have to attend Traffic Survival School (not the same thing as Defensive Driving School) under the following circumstances:
- If you are under age 18 and this is your first moving violation
- If you received an additional ticket for running a red light or stop sign
- If you received an additional ticket for DUI
- If the three points you receive for criminal speeding puts you over eight points for the past 12 months
Failure to complete this course results in a suspended driver’s license.
An additional penalty unrelated to Arizona’s legal system is the rise in auto insurance premiums you likely face after a criminal speeding charge.
How Can Liberty Law Help?
Our criminal team’s first goal is always to get your charges completely dismissed. If that isn’t possible, we look next at having the charges reduced to a civil speeding violation, which drastically reduces the penalties and fines.
At Liberty Law, we believe every client is innocent until proven guilty. We do everything in our power to protect your rights. Call us today for a free consultation.