By Garth O'Brien | November 4, 2007
Filed Under DUI
There are many inquiries about the crime of Negligent Driving in the First Degree. Some also refer to this crime as Neg 1. Washington State has two classifications of misdemeanor crimes. A Gross Misdemeanor carries a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a $5,000.00 fine. Misdemeanors carry a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail and a $1,000.00 fine.
Negligent Driving in the First Degree is a Misdemeanor. Further, there are no mandatory penalties with a Negligent Driving in the First Degree conviction. There is no driver license suspension. There is no mandatory jail. There is no mandatory requirement to carry SR-22 high risk insurance.
It is likely your insurance company will raise your premiums when they peruse your driving record. Any Negligent Driving in the First Degree conviction is reported to the Department of Licensing. They will make a notation about the conviction on your driving record.
The elements of Neg 1 are:
1. Operating a motor vehicle;
2. In a manner that is both negligent and endangers or is likely to endanger any person or property; and
3. Exhibits the effects of having consumed liquor or an illegal drug.
You do not need to be impaired to be convicted of Neg 1. Do not confuse Neg 1 with a DUI. You have a sip of beer and drive in a negligent manner you can be arrested for Neg 1.
Negligent Driving in the First Degree is often used in DUI plea negotiations. Depending upon the severity of the actual offense and many other factors, a prosecutor may amend the DUI charge to a Negligent Driving in the First Degree if the DUI defendant agrees to plea guilty.