Driving On A Suspended License
Driving on a suspended or revoked license in the State of Virginia is a serious violation of the vehicular code in Virginia. Commonwealth statue § 46.2-301 Driving on a Suspended License, states the following:
Except as provided in §§46.2-304 and 46.2-357, no resident or nonresident (i) whose driver’s license, learner’s permit, or privilege to drive a motor vehicle has been suspended or revoked or (ii) who has been directed not to drive by any court or by the Commissioner, or (iii) who has been forbidden…to operate a motor vehicle in the Commonwealth shall thereafter drive any motor vehicle…
What’s the Difference Between Suspension, Revocation, and Disqualification of Driver’s License?
If your license is suspended, you will lose your driving privileges for a certain amount of time which may vary according to the severity of your offense. You may also have to satisfy certain conditions before you are allowed to drive again.
Revocation of your driver’s license means that you have lost your license and thus have no driving privileges. Once you have served the revocation period, you may (in most cases) apply for a new license, which will carry certain requirements that you must complete.
Disqualification of your driver’s license means that you have had your commercial driver’s license (CDL) suspended or revoked for a period of time.
While you may think that driving on a suspended license may not sound that serious, the fact that your driving privileges have already been curtailed means that either:
(a) An administrative action has been levied against you. This may include:
Failure to pay court fines within 15 days
Failure to pay child support
Failure to completed a required driver improvement class
Excessive DMV points accumulation
(b) You have been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony conviction involving a motor vehicle, including:
Leaving the scene of an accident
Felony convictions involving a motor vehicle
Eluding a police officer
Drug offenses, regardless of whether a motor vehicle was involved or not, may also carry a license suspension component.
What are the penalties for driving on a Suspended License in Virginia?
First Offense – Class 1 Misdemeanor, carrying a fine up to $2,500.00, up to a year in jail, and suspension of license up to 90 days.
Second Offense – Class 1 Misdemeanor, carrying a fine up to $2,500.00, up to a year in jail, and suspension of license up to 90 days, with all penalties, fines, and jail time added to those from a prior offense.
Third Offense –same as a second offense with 10 days mandatory jail time.
Do I need a lawyer for a Charge of Driving on a Suspended License?
While it is not absolutely essential to have a lawyer represent you, many judges will require that you have a lawyer and or will appoint one for you if you do not. Due to the complexity of these types of cases, it is recommended that you do have a lawyer to protect your interests and reduce, if possible, the severity of the penalties that may be levied against you.