Is A Speeding Ticket A Misdemeanor?

Is A Speeding Ticket A Misdemeanor?

Updated April 26, 2024

No one wants a speeding ticket ruining their day. Unfortunately, you can be pulled over for speeding when you least expect it, resulting in fines, possible license demerit points, and increased insurance rates.

Is a speeding ticket a misdemeanor? Although many speeding incidents are considered traffic infractions, there are circumstances where you could be charged with a misdemeanor or even a felony.

Here's a look at the factors that can elevate a simple traffic ticket and what you can do about it.

Standard Speeding Tickets

In most situations, drivers who get stopped for speeding are issued an infraction ticket. This specifies the violation of traffic laws committed, the deadline when payment is due, and the driver's options to resolve the situation.

Is a Speeding Ticket a Misdemeanor?

There are aggravating circumstances that can turn a simple speeding ticket into a criminal offense. In most cases, if you get a speeding ticket, it's considered an infraction, which isn't a criminal offense.

This often results in a small fine and a few license demerit points. But sometimes a speeding ticket is a more serious violation that could result in stiffer penalties or even jail time.

Dealing With Infraction Speeding Tickets


Excessive Speeding 

Excessive speeding is the most common infraction speeding charge. If you're pulled over for driving well over the speed limit. 

This could be for driving 15 or more miles per hour over the speed limit. You could face a charge for speeding over 65 MPH (VC 22349)(a) or speeding over 70 MPH (vc 22356)(b).

In California, if a police officer stops you for speeding 25 miles over the speed limit or driving over 100 miles per hour (VC 22348)(b), you may be expected to appear in court.

If you don't comply, you could face even stiffer penalties or an arrest warrant.

If you receive an infraction ticket, you will be asked to either pay the traffic ticket or appear in court. If you pay the ticket by the deadline, you typically won't need to go to court or take any further action.

Drivers who want to fight the ticket or feel their ticket was unjust must go to traffic court and plead not guilty before the deadline. Getting out of a traffic ticket is difficult on your own.

Luckily, there are professional services that can help you get your ticket dismissed in Southern California such as Fyourticket.

How Much Do Infraction Tickets Cost?

In most areas, speeding ticket fines range from $50 up to a few hundred dollars. It depends on how fast you were driving relative to the speed limit. Whether the violation occurred in a school or work zone also affects the cost of the ticket.

If you get a speeding ticket in California, you will face some of the highest fines in the U.S. The base fine in California ranges from $100 to $200. You can expect additional fees and penalties and may owe hundreds of dollars in fines.

Speeding through a construction or school zone will cost you even more, including higher insurance rates. Before you speed in California, it's important to be aware of the consequences.

If you're facing steep infraction fines, FYourTicket, a professional ticket dismissal service in Southern California, will work to get your ticket dismissed. If necessary, they can fight for your rights in court, too.

Misdemeanor Speeding Tickets 

In a few states, any traffic offense is a misdemeanor. However, in most states, a speeding violation is deemed a misdemeanor if there are aggravating factors involved.

Here are some reasons your speeding ticket could be charged as a misdemeanor:

Reckless Driving

Excessive speeding is dangerous and poses a significant risk to others. A charge of reckless driving is usually a misdemeanor. An example of reckless driving could be driving too fast through an area of pedestrians, putting their lives in danger.

Street racing on public roadways is typically a misdemeanor charge. In these cases, it's good to know there are ways to dismiss your speeding ticket in Southern California.

Commercial Vehicles

The type of vehicle you're operating when you get a speeding ticket can make a difference in the cost of your ticket. Commercial vehicle drivers, especially hazmat transport and school bus drivers, are held to stricter rules than other drivers.

As a commercial driver, you could face a misdemeanor charge for exceeding the speed limit by a small amount (22406).

Dealing With Misdemeanor Speeding Tickets

If you're facing a misdemeanor speeding charge, you generally go to criminal court. Unlike in traffic court, you can't simply pay a fine and get out of it.

It's a more formal court situation than a traffic court. But, you also have more rights. You have the right to hire a speeding ticket attorney or have a court-appointed counsel to represent you.

Felony Speeding Violations 

A speeding violation doesn't usually result in a felony charge unless there's evidence of highly dangerous activity. There are other circumstances where speeding can result in felony charges, including:

Injury or Death

In some cases, speeding can result in serious injury or death. The driver can face felony charges such as vehicular assault or vehicular manslaughter.

Evading an Officer

Speeding can be deemed a felony if the driver is being pursued by a police officer. In many states, "evading" is defined as someone driving 15 miles over the speed limit while fleeing the police.

Some speeding offenses, such as street racing that are typically misdemeanors can be considered felonies for repeat violations.

Penalties for Felony Speeding Charges

Depending on the circumstances, someone convicted of a felony speeding offense could face a year or more in prison. They could also face hundreds to thousands of dollars in fines and a license suspension or revocation.

Get Your Traffic Ticket Dismissed

Did you get pulled over and are wondering, "Is a speeding ticket a misdemeanor?" It depends on many factors, but it could be.

No matter the situation, getting a traffic ticket is always stressful. Your first instinct may be to pay it off quickly and get on with your life. Before you do, you may want to consult a speeding ticket attorney.

At FYourTicket, we've been fighting traffic tickets since 2014. We've dismissed over 10,000 tickets so far! If you're facing speeding, exhibiting speed, reckless driving, or DUI charges, we're here to help!

Let us take care of your traffic ticket so you don't have to worry about it. Contact FYourTicket today for a free consultation.