Florida's Vehicular Homicide and Vehicular Manslaughter Laws and Penalties

When reckless driving leads to the death of another person, the driver can face felony vehicular homicide charges.

In Florida, causing the death of another person while driving can lead to serious criminal charges. This article covers Florida's vehicular homicide laws and the penalties for a conviction.

How Does Florida Define Vehicular Homicide?

In Florida, a person can be convicted of vehicular homicide for driving in a "reckless manner" and causing the death of another person or an unborn child (by injury to the mother). Driving in a "reckless manner" is defined as driving in a way that, under the circumstances, was likely to result in a fatality or great bodily harm.

Florida's Vehicular Homicide Penalties

The consequences of a Florida vehicular homicide conviction depend on the circumstances. However, the possible penalties for the two types of vehicular homicide are described below.

Penalties for a Standard Vehicular Homicide Conviction in Florida

In most cases, vehicular homicide is a second-degree felony. Convicted drivers face up to 15 years in prison and a maximum of $10,000 in fines.

Penalties for an Aggravated Vehicular Homicide Conviction in Florida

Where a vehicular homicide is the result of a hit-and-run accident, the driver can be charged with a first-degree felony. A conviction carries up to 30 years in prison and a maximum of $10,000 in fines.

Penalties for DUI Manslaughter in Florida

The consequences for being convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) are substantially more severe if someone is killed. DUI-related killings are considered "DUI manslaughter," a second-degree felony. Convictions carry up to 15 years in prison and a maximum of $10,000 in fines.

License Revocation for Vehicular Homicide Convictions in Florida

A vehicular homicide conviction will also result in a license revocation of at least three years.

Talk to a Florida Criminal Defense Attorney

Vehicular homicide is a serious criminal charge that can result in a long prison sentence. If you've been arrested for vehicular homicide—or any other crime—get in contact with a criminal defense attorney right away. The facts of every case are different. An experienced defense attorney can explain how the law applies to the facts of your case.

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