Is Speeding a Misdemeanor?

Have you ever found yourself behind the wheel, cruising down the road, and suddenly realized you’re going over the speed limit? We’ve all been there, but what are the consequences of this seemingly harmless mistake? Is speeding a misdemeanor? The answer is more complex than you might think.

Going over the posted speed limit can have significant consequences, regardless of whether you’re late for work or just enjoying the ride. Keep reading to find out the legal definition of speeding and the potential criminal charges that come with it.

Is Speeding a Misdemeanor
Is Speeding a Misdemeanor

Is Speeding a Misdemeanor?

Depending on the particular jurisdiction and the details of the act, speeding may or may not be considered a misdemeanor.

Speeding may be regarded as a traffic violation in various states and nations rather than a misdemeanor, which usually refers to more serious criminal violations. But, in some circumstances, such as when a driver goes too fast or endangers others while driving too quickly, the crime may be upgraded to a misdemeanor or even a felony.

Generally speaking, several variables, such as the vehicle’s speed, the incident’s location, and any injuries to other people, will determine the severity of the infraction and the accompanying sanctions.

Class B misdemeanors Missouri speeding are more severe than Class C misdemeanors in Missouri but are less serious than Class A misdemeanors. If a driver exceeds the posted speed limit by more than 20 mph but less than 25 mph, a Class B misdemeanor may be filed against them.

Also Read: How Many Interlock Violations Can You Have

Difference Between Infractions and Misdemeanors

Individuals can commit both infractions and misdemeanors, but the severity and possible consequences of each are different. But the real question is that is a speeding ticket a misdemeanor?

A fine is typically imposed as punishment for an infraction, which is a minor infraction. It is less severe than a misdemeanor and typically does not carry a jail sentence or a criminal record. Traffic infractions include things like going through a red light too fast, reckless driving, and parking in a no-parking area.

Conversely, a misdemeanor is a more serious crime that carries a fine, a jail sentence, or both. It is regarded as a crime and may result in a criminal record. Misdemeanors include things like assault, reckless driving, and driving while intoxicated or high.

Depending on the jurisdiction and the details of the offense, a misdemeanor’s severity can change. A misdemeanor may result in a fine and a brief period of jail time in some situations, while in other situations, it may result in a longer jail term and higher fines.

The legal implications are a critical distinction between an infraction and a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor can result in more severe punishments, such as imprisonment and a criminal record, as opposed to an infraction, which typically carries a simple fine. A misdemeanor conviction can also long-term impact a person’s ability to find work, find housing, and manage other aspects of their life.

In conclusion, a misdemeanor is a more serious criminal offense that may result in a fine, imprisonment or both. In contrast, an infraction is a minor offense that is sanctioned by a fine. Individuals can better understand the potential repercussions of their actions and make educated decisions to avoid committing these offenses by knowing the distinction between them.

What Happens After you are Charged with a Speeding Misdemeanor?

The repercussions of a speeding misdemeanor charge can change depending on the particulars of your case and the state’s laws. But generally speaking, a speeding misdemeanor is a criminal offense that can lead to fines, points on your license, and in some circumstances, even jail time.

What Happens After you are Charged with a Speeding Misdemeanor?

The severity of the fines can vary depending on a number of things, including how much you were speeding, whether you had any prior traffic violations or criminal convictions, and whether you were speeding at the time of an accident or injury.

A speeding misdemeanor can negatively affect your life beyond just the legal repercussions, such as higher insurance costs and a damaged driving record that may limit your ability to get a job and drive in the future.

It is crucial to take a speeding misdemeanor charge seriously and seek the guidance of an experienced attorney who can guide you through the legal process and help you lessen the charge’s possible consequences.

While speeding is generally considered a traffic violation and classified as a misdemeanor, excessive speeding can result in felony charges. Learn more about the specific speed limits that may lead to felony charges in our article on how much over the speed limit is a felony.


Is a speeding ticket in California a misdemeanor?

In California, speeding is a traffic violation rather than a crime. However, driving recklessly or engaging in street racing can result from driving too fast. If someone else is seriously hurt in these situations, it becomes a felony. Otherwise, it is considered a misdemeanor.

Can you go to jail for speeding?

You cannot be imprisoned solely for a speeding offense, according to the courts. The harshest punishment for speeding is a fine and penalty points, or driving privileges may be suspended.

Is speeding a misdemeanor in the United States?

Speeding is not a misdemeanor if it exceeds the speed limit by five miles per hour or less because the maximum fine for an infraction is $400 ( 558.002. 1(6), RSMo). However, going more than five miles per hour over the posted limit is a Class C misdemeanor.