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Loudoun County Attorneys > Blog > Criminal Defense > Top Five Non-Moving Traffic Violations in Virginia

Top Five Non-Moving Traffic Violations in Virginia


The Virginia traffic code mostly penalizes moving violations, like speeding and turning illegally. These traffic offenses usually have large fines and significant points. Non-moving violations, like the ones listed below, are usually fix-it tickets. Generally, the judge dismisses the case if the driver resolves the issue before the court date or before a court-ordered deadline.

However, even if the judge dismisses the case, the incident could still go on your permanent driving record unless a Leesburg criminal defense lawyer becomes involved. Additionally, if the driver misses the fix-it deadline, even by one day, the court could suspend the person’s driver’s license or even issue an arrest warrant. An attorney can also resolve these issues before they turn the driver’s daily life upside down.

Expired Registration

This non-moving violation might be the most common one in Loudoun County. Officers usually give drivers very little leeway in these matters. If the registration is even a day or two late, many law enforcement departments have zero-tolerance policies.

Expired registration stops are frequently quota stops. At least informally, officers must write a certain number of citations per month, if they want to move up the ladder. Assume Officer Mary and Officer Joe work roughly the same beat and shift. Mary writes fifty tickets in a month and Joe writes twenty-five. Mary will most likely get promoted and Joe will most likely be reassigned to the night shift.

If the judge believes the stop was a quota stop, the judge will most likely throw the matter out of court. A Leesburg criminal defense lawyer often scrutinizes the officers citation-writing pattern (e.g. Mary wrote zero tickets the first three weeks of a month and fifty tickets the final week).

Illegal Parking

These citations are often part of a broken windows police philosophy. This philosophy holds that a crackdown on code violations, like broken windows, illegally-parked cars, and other such matters, trickles down and deters crime in other, more important areas, like assaults and burglaries. This approach has never been conclusively proven or disproven as effective or ineffective.


Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility is the classic fix-it ticket. Courts almost never bother with these citations if the driver promptly buys auto insurance.

FMFR is also a classic snowball ticket. If the driver continues to operate a vehicle without insurance, misdemeanor charges could follow. The state could suspend the driver’s license, resulting in DWLS (driving while license suspended) charges. These criminal charges usually involve not only a fine, but also jail or probation time.

Unlawful Vehicle Modifications

Overly tinted windows and oversize license plate frames are the two most common unlawful vehicle modification citations in Virginia.

Officers could pull over vehicles for tint violations even if those vehicles have regulation tints, as long as the officer reasonably believes the vehicle is in violation of this law. Officers frequently use the oversize license plate frame to justify questionable stops. Technically, if the frame blocks any information on the plate, such as the tippy-top of the “VIRGINA” letters, the car or truck is in violation of this law.


This infraction isn’t technically a traffic ticket, but we’ll include it on this list anyway. Loitering, or remaining in a public place without any apparent purpose, is usually a fallback law. If suspects antagonize officers and officers don’t have anything to charge them with, they usually bring loitering charges. This offense is very subjective and these charges usually don’t hold up in court.

Reach Out to a Diligent Loudoun County Lawyer

There’s a big difference between an arrest and a conviction in criminal law. For a confidential consultation with an experienced criminal defense attorney in Leesburg, contact Simms Showers, LLP, Attorneys at Law. We routinely handle matters throughout Northern Virginia.



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