Driving and vehicle offenses

The lawyers at Ashbach Law Offices, LLC provide aggressive, strong defense for those charged with driving offenses throughout Skagit, Snohomish, King and Whatcom Counties. Our goal is to aggressively protect you, your family and your interests from the prosecution, saving jail time, licenses, occupations and reputations. With offices in Marysville and Mill Creek, Washington, we are available to meet you discuss your case. We help good people in bad situations. Let us help you.

Driving with Suspended License



Washington State considers driving a motor vehicle to be a privilege, as opposed to a right. The U.S. Supreme Court has determined that states may take appropriate means to insure competence and care by licensed drivers. Consequently, every person who drives a vehicle in Washington State must have a valid driver’s license. Under RCW 46.20, it is unlawful to drive a motor vehicle when one’s license is suspended or revoked. Driving with a Suspended/Revoked license is colloquially referred to as “DWLS.” DWLS has three different degrees: DWLS 3rd Degree, DWLS 2nd Degree, and DWLS 1st Degree (often referred to as Habitual Traffic Offender revocation). Potential punishment and further license ramifications vary depending on the degree charged.

Our attorneys have a strong track record of getting suspended license charges dismissed, reduced and resolved in manners saving jail times, fines, probation and driving privileges. Additionally, if your license has been revoked for a long period of time, we may be able to help you obtain a license, as we have for many of our clients. Call our office at 360-659-4950 or 888-WA-LAW-NW for personal, individualized attention to your case. ...more

Sample Result - DWLS 1st Degree - reduced to 3rd degree; mandatory 180 days jail avoided.


Eluding a Law Enforcement Vehicle (or attempt to)



The language and legislative history of RCW 46.61.024 indicate the Legislature’s concern with eradicating or minimizing the risk of high-speed chases. In an attempt to protect Washington citizens from such high risk events, the Legislature has classified Eluding as a Class C Felony. In fact, even if an arrest or detention by a law enforcement officer was unlawful, fleeing is still illegal if done in a manner that indicates a wanton and willful disregard for the life and property of others. Washington courts have held that the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures does not create a constitutional right to react unreasonably to an illegal detention.

If you are, or someone you care about is, facing an Eluding charge, contact our office at 360-659-4950 or 888-WA-LAW-NW immediately for a free, no-pressure case evaluation. Our skilled, seasoned attorneys are ready to protect you and your interests from this serious, high-impact allegation. ...more

Failure to Obey Flagger or Law Enforcement Officer



In an effort to improve roadside safety for road workers, the Washington State Legislature has enacted RCW 47.36.200, which criminalizes the failure to comply with signs or flaggers at thoroughfare work sites. This crime is classified as a misdemeanor, meaning conviction carries with it the possibility of up to 90 days in jail and $1000 in fines, plus probation.

Additionally, to promote safety and compliance with traffic laws, the Legislature has made it a misdemeanor when a driver wilfully fails to stop when requested to do so by a person reasonably identifiable as a law enforcement officer. This law also requires a driver to identify himself or herself to a law enforcement officer when that officer is investigating a traffic infraction.

For individualized help and care fighting these types of charges, call our office at 360-659-4950 or 888-WA-LAW-NW immediately for a free, no-pressure case evaluation. Use lawyers who have successfully defended clients against Failure to Obey charges. Call us. We have the experience and knowledge to best protect you. ...more


Sample Result - Failure to Obey Flagger - Dismissed

Sample Result - Failure to Obey Law Enforcement Officer - Dismissed

Hit and Run



Washington Statutes (RCW 46.52.010 and RCW 46.52.020) require a driver of a motor vehicle to take certain steps when involved in a collision or accident, whether or not the collision occurred with property, a motor vehicle (occupied or unoccupied) or a person. Failure to comply with these requirements subjects a driver to criminal charges for "Hit and Run," which are split up into degrees of severity, depending on what the vehicle collided with. If the accident involved another party being injured or killed, Hit and Run may be punishable as either a Class B or Class C Felony, respectively.

Ashbach Law Offices, LLC, has established a strong track record in getting Hit and Run charges dismissed and/or reduced to lesser charges. Such results have saved licenses and jobs and keep criminal histories clean. A simple mistake can have far-reaching consequences. Do not let that happen to you. Contact our office at 360-659-4950 or 888-WA-LAW-NW to learn how we can best protect you. ...more

Sample Result - Hit and Run Attended - Dismissed - license saved; no jail

Sample Result - Hit and Run Unattended - Dismissed - no jail

Sample Result - Hit and Run Attended - Amended to Unattended - license saved; no jail

Ignition Interlock Offenses



The requirement of operating motor vehicles only with functioning interlock devices is typically imposed as a result of a conviction for DUI or Physical Control, entry into a deferred prosecution or the issuance of an Ignition Interlock Device by the Department of Licensing. There are three main Ignition Interlock crimes that may be charged: Driving Without an Ignition Interlock Device, Circumventing an Ignition Interlock Device, and Assisting the Circumvention of an Interlock Device

Ignition interlock charges can have very serious consequences. These include penalties for the current charge, license ramifications and often probation violations for earlier offenses. To improve your chances of a successful outcome, call us today at 360-659-4950 or 888-WA-LAW-NW. We are experienced in protecting our clients from new ignition interlock charges as well as probationary matters. Our job is helping good people in bad situations. Let us protect you. ...more

Leaving Child Unattended in a Vehicle



Washington State has made it a crime to leave a child unattended in both a parked vehicle and a vehicle with motor running. However, each crime specifies the age under which the child must be (which is different), and the crimes are punishable at different levels (gross misdemeanor versus simple misdemeanor).

Additionally, many cities have enacted their own municipal code provisions for similar offenses. For example, in Snohomish County, the City of Lynnwood, Washington, and City of Lake Stevens, Washington, have each criminalized offenses for leaving children unattended in circumstances that are not encompassed by the state statues. Seattle Municipal Code 11.58.190 and Mount Vernon Municipal Code 9.06.010 are other examples.

Our office has successfully defended clients with many different types of Leaving Child Unattended charges, obtaining dismissals and keeping our clients’ records clean. In addition to background checks, these types of charges can have ancillary impacts with the State and in child custody proceedings. Let our experienced attorneys protect you from unwanted outcomes. We stand ready to defend and fight for you. Call 360-659-4950 or 888-WA-LAW-NW for individualized, personal attention for your case. ...more

Sample Result - Leaving Child Unattended - Dismissed

Negligent Driving



Washington State now has two classifications of the Negligent Driving law violation: First Degree (colloquially “Wet Neg”) is a criminal charge, classified as a simple misdemeanor, while Second Degree is a traffic infraction with a typical fine of $550. First Degree carries an added element of the driver exhibiting the effects of having consumed liquor or an illegal drug.

"Negligent" as far as these two law violations are concerned is defined as: "the failure to exercise ordinary care, and is the doing of some act that a reasonably careful person would not do under the same or similar circumstances or the failure to do something that a reasonably careful person would do under the same or similar circumstances."

With successful representation of clients facing criminal or civil negligent driving allegations, we have the experience, knowledge and track record to protect you, your license, and your record. Let us defend you. Call 360-659-4950 or 888-WA-LAW-NW for a free, no-pressure consultation. ...more

Sample Result - Negligent Driving 1st Degree - Reduced to Infraction

Racing and Reckless Driving



Racing and Reckless Driving are similar in nature, but are not the same. However, in some instances, the same alleged conduct can be charged as both Reckless Driving and Racing. An example would be driving at an extremely high speed. If a person charged with either of these allegations were convicted, each carries with it a license suspension of at least 30 days and requirement of SR-22 insurance in addition to court-imposed penalties.

The lawyers at Ashbach Law Offices, LLC, have established a strong track record in aggressively representing clients charged with Reckless Driving and Racing offenses. We help good people in bad situations. Let us use our knowledge, skills and experience to best protect you, your license and your reputation. Call our office at 360-659-4950 or 888-WA-LAW-NW immediately for a free, no-pressure case evaluation and personalized attention. ...more

Sample Result - Reckless Driving - Dismissed

Vehicular Assault



Vehicular Assault in Washington is a Class B felony, which is punishable by up to 10 years in jail. Vehicular Assault can be committed many ways, and each way has its own separate punishment structure. For example, Vehicular Assault by Being Under the Influence has a standard range of 3-9 months if the person has no prior history, while Vehicular Assault by Operation of a Vehicle with Disregard for the Safety of Others has a standard range of 1-3 months for a similarly situated individual. Vehicular Assault, and Vehicular Homicide, may carry sentencing enhancements depending on the circumstances of the allegations that may result in significantly more jail time.

A vehicular assault charge is a serious allegation requiring serious defense. Contact Ashbach Law Offices, LLC, at 360-659-4950 or 888-WA-LAW-NW to learn how we can protect you, or someone you care about. It is never too early to get started on an effective defense. Call us today for a free, personalized, no-pressure consultation. ...more