A suspended or revoked driver’s license can happen for a number of different reasons, from a DUI conviction to getting too many points added to the license in a short amount of time. When someone’s driver’s license is suspended or revoked, they should avoid driving completely until they can get the license reinstated. However, if someone does decide to drive while they have a suspended license, they should be aware of the potential consequences if they are caught.
Suspended Versus Revoked
Both suspended and revoked mean that the driver does not have a valid driver’s license and is unable to drive a motor vehicle. With a suspended license, the suspension will be lifted after a certain period of time or if the driver has met the requirements for their suspension. With a revoked license, the driver no longer has a valid license and will need to have the license reinstated to be able to drive again. This can be a complex process, so it is a good idea to work with an attorney in Springfield if it’s possible to have the license reinstated.
How Can a License be Suspended?
Getting too many points within a short period of time and a DUI conviction are the two most common reasons for someone to have a suspended or revoked driver’s license. On top of this, there are other ways a driver’s license can be suspended. If someone drives without insurance on their car, they could face a suspension. If the driver will not do a breathalyzer test when they’re stopped on suspicion of driving under the influence, they could have their license suspended. Another way for this to happen is if the driver fails to pay court-ordered child support.
The First Offense After Suspension
If someone with a revoked license decides to drive, there is always the possibility they will be pulled over. The officer will find out that the driver is driving on a revoked license. At this point, the driver is facing a class D misdemeanor and may be arrested or given a court date. They will not be able to drive the vehicle any further, so they will need to have someone get it and give them a ride. The fine for a first offense is $500 in Missouri.
A Second Offense
Drivers who are caught a second time driving with a suspended license face further penalties. In these cases, it is likely that the driver will be arrested, and someone will need to pick up the vehicle, or it will be impounded by the police. In Missouri, the second offense of driving on a suspended license is a class A misdemeanor. This means the driver is facing up to one year in jail. They will also have to pay a fine of up to $2,000. If the vehicle is impounded, the driver will also need to pay the impound fees to get their vehicle back.
More Than Three Offenses
If the driver continues driving on a suspended license, they could be arrested for a third offense, which is a class E felony. The vehicle will likely be impounded, and the driver will be arrested. For this felony, the driver faces up to four years in jail along with up to $10,000 in fines.
It is possible to be charged with a felony for three or more convictions for driving with a suspended license in the previous ten years. It’s also possible to face a felony charge if the driver’s license was revoked because of two or more DUIs or if the driver has both a DUI conviction and at least two prior convictions for driving with a suspended license within the past ten years.
Extending the Suspension
On top of the possibility of jail time and fines, there are other consequences for driving on a suspended license. It is possible that the suspension will be extended, so it will be even longer before the driver will have a valid driver’s license again. If the license has been revoked, it may be longer before the driver is able to have it reinstated. Continuing to be convicted for driving on a license that is suspended or revoked could lead to an even longer wait before the driver is able to legally drive a vehicle again.
Reinstating the Driver’s License
It is possible to have a suspended or revoked driver’s license reinstated, but there is a process to go through. The driver will need to determine why their driver’s license was suspended or revoked, then find the right forms to file and the fees needed to work on the reinstatement. It is important for the driver to make sure they are able to get their license back, as they may need to wait longer before reinstatement is possible. Once it is possible, they can turn in the right forms and the required fees, and then they may have their license reinstated and may be able to drive again.
Working With an Attorney
Dealing with the consequences of driving with a suspended license or trying to have the license reinstated can be difficult. Drivers will want to make sure they have the right help no matter what they’re dealing with. Traffic attorneys in Missouri are able to help with both of these situations and will help the driver do as much as possible to minimize the repercussions for a new charge or have the driver’s license reinstated quickly.
If your driver’s license has been suspended or revoked, it’s necessary to stop driving completely until it can be reinstated. If you do decide to drive, there are consequences if you are pulled over. The next step you’ll want to take, whether you’ve been caught driving on a suspended license or you’re ready to look into reinstatement, is to speak with an Springfield attorney. By working with an attorney, you may be able to minimize the consequences you’re facing for driving while your license is suspended and get the help you need to have it reinstated.