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Joseph Mcgrath
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Joseph Mcgrath’s Answers

63 total


  • Can I get a driver's license in Washington state if my license is suspended in Virginia?

    My driver's license has been suspended for 10 years through the courthouse in my town in Virginia due to court fines (some are traffic-related that was the reason for my suspension but the suspensions were only for 6 months and those are over with...

    Joseph’s Answer

    I agree with the other attorneys who know the law in Washington. You need to speak with a VA lawyer near you about a license restoration petition. But before you do get a compliance summary from the DMV, which you can do online at www.dmvnow.com This will explain the length of the remaining suspension period, and what you must do and pay, and to whom, in order to be reinstated. Some courts will grant a restoration or restricted license if there is an agreement to pay off the fines and costs. But as each case and jurisdiction can be different, its best to contact local attorney who has experience handling license restorations. Or if you are in the Richmond area you could speak with the Drive to Work Program (804) 358-6727

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  • Would it be likely for a prosecutor to decide to completely drop a DUI charge during plea negotiations?

    If there are multiple DUI charges pending at the same time, is it unheard of for 1 of the DUIS to be completely dropped during negotiations?

    Joseph’s Answer

    You need a local experienced DUI lawyer to answer this question, one that is familiar with both the prosecutor (s) and the judges.

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  • My question is can I fight that the breathalyzer was tampered with from the start and fight the results of my test in court?

    I was pulled over for speeding the trooper said he smelt alcohol and told me to get out of the car. I did the tests and blew in the breathalyzer and was arrested. I went to the station where they wanted me to blow into the machine I tried two time...

    Joseph’s Answer

    I agree with the other attorneys,..you will need a good DUI lawyer AND an expert witness who knows
    the breath machine.

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  • What happens if I got a reckless driving speeding charge in Richmond, VA?

    I've gotten tickets in the past but it has been about four years since my last ticket. I've always just paid them instead of going to court. This time I got a reckless speeding ticket for doing 84 in a 65 and am worried about the penalties. Any ad...

    Joseph’s Answer

    Assuming that the officer has enough evidence for a conviction, ( radar and tuning forks are calibrated as required or his speedometer was calibrated ), what the judge will do will depend on your driving record, your interaction with the officer, and the driving conditions at the time of being stopped. If the only aggravating factor is the speed , and you have a decent record, it is likely that the judge would agree to either reduce the offense to a lesser charge or allow you to take a driver improvement clinic and , upon completion and payment of costs, dismiss the case. I have been practicing in that court for more than 30 yrs. and this opinion is based on that experience.

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  • I was convicted of a misdemeanor for a reckless driving ticket already in colonial heights and I have 14 days of jail time.

    Is there any way I can switch it from jail time to community service? I am in college and working so all my time goes into studying and working just to pay for books and my car note. Is there anyway I can change it?

    Joseph’s Answer

    I also agree with the other attorney's that you either should contact the lawyer who represented you or hire one. I expect since you received a jail sentence and haven't yet reported to jail that you may have received weekend time or given a delayed reporting date. If you still have time before the 10 days run, and can't afford a lawyer, go to the clerk's office prior to court (8 a.m.) and ask the clerk to put your case before the judge. Then ask for the change in the sentence. Make sure you can explain why you need the change, bring proof. In addition, if you haven't paid the fine and costs bring that total with you and do so.
    Most of the judges in Colonial Hgts are reasonable and will listen to your request. But again, if you
    had an attorney its best to contact him/her because they know the circumstances of your case.
    But remember the importance of your appeal right and that it expires 10 days after conviction. If you do appeal you will need an attorney.

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  • What will be the consequences be for a failed interlock test from the court?

    The night before I took NyQuil and used mouth wash in the morning without thinking and when I was heading to work the next morning I got a failed test. It locked out my car but I didn't wait to retest because I was running late for work and got a ...

    Joseph’s Answer

    I agree with the other lawyer, get a lawyer or contact the lawyer who represented you in the DUI case.
    As the interlock was most likely ordered by the court, a violation of the device is a violation of the court order which could result in additional punishment. Where I practice mouth wash and NyQuuil are not an excuse and is rarely believed by the judge to have caused the lock out. Most judges say that the client was taught what not to do.

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  • If he has blown positive for a BAC of .02 or above twice already will he most likely be going to jail once vasap reads it

    My boyfriend has had the interlock device for less then a month

    Joseph’s Answer

    VASAP must first send in a non-compliance report to the court. That effectively removes him from the program until reinstated by the judge, if that's his decision. Upon receipt of the report a show cause against your boy friend will be issued. Every court handles these differently. ( and this is why you need local counsel, or to discuss it with the attorney who represented him) Often if its the first time a judge may continue the case ordering him back into VASAP and review his performance at a later date. If not the first time or otherwise an aggravated situation then there is certainly a possibility of a jail sentence and loss of the restricted license. The interlock device is sensitive to any type of alcohol, not just the kind that gets you drunk. So an attorney needs to look at the testing documents and discuss the situation with your boy friend. I have not had a case in Boydton before so again it is important that your boyfriend either contacts the attorney who represented him or hires another familiar with the judge and knows what he is likely to do. Good luck.

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  • How should I proceed? What kind of chances do I have to get this thrown out?

    Police officers minimal suspicion on "Improper Laning" while following me for 4 miles in a 96' Corolla to suspect that I am under the influence of marijuana. Takes me out of the car, asked to search me which I politely told him no, proceeds to hav...

    Joseph’s Answer

    I concur with all the other lawyers, get a lawyer, but get one experienced in defense of marijuana , driving under influence of drugs cases. With an experienced lawyer you may come out ok.

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  • Can that ticket be thrown out based on a technicality?

    My boyfriend got a driving on Va revoked license ? The date to appear to court was wrong on the ticket there was no court that day the address is also wrong on the ticket the officer had the correct information but wrote out the ticket incorrectl...

    Joseph’s Answer

    To answer the question, no the case would not likely be "thrown out" based on the wrong court date and incorrect address. Your boyfriend received a summons commanding him to appear in court and even if the date was wrong, he probably signed it acknowledging he would go to court. As the others suggest, check the court web site: www.courts.state.va.us and it will either say that he was convicted in his absence,
    the case was continued, or its in "fugitive" status. If he was convicted he only had 30 days to pay the fine and costs. If that happened and he didn't his license is suspended until he does; a suspension upon a suspension in his case. Again, check the web site and if the case is still pending, hire a lawyer..

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  • What should my next steps be?

    I recently got a reckless driving traffic ticket for going 108/60. I've had 1 or 2 pervious tickets for going 10 over and I went to driving school. I'm 19 and currently in college.

    Joseph’s Answer

    As the other attorney's have recommended, obtaining an attorney experienced with reckless driving tickets in the court in which you are charged is the first thing to do. You should expect the officer has enough evidence convict you, therefore you may want to be pro-active and consider taking a driver improvement clinic, particularly the reckless and aggressive clinic offered by the Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program. If that isnt offered where you are , then take an in class clinic (these can be found at www.dmvnow.com )
    You might also consider finding a charitable organization and contribute as many hours in community service as you can prior to trial. Ask several professional individuals you may for character letters indicating that this type of behavior isn't in keeping with what they know of you, etc. Finally, if you did this on a motor cycle consider selling it. These suggestions just might keep you out of jail, or at least lessen the jail time a court my give, the fine it might give, and the suspension of your license it might impose. It will at least give your attorney something good to say. Good Luck

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