Florida's Vehicular Homicide Laws and Penalties

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

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.

Vehicular Homicide Penalties

The consequences of a Florida vehicular homicide conviction depend on the circumstances. But the possible penalties are:

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

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

DUI Manslaughter

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 $10,000 in fines.

Talk to a 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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