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How Serious Is Driving with a Suspended License?

Posted on in Driver's License

How Serious Is Driving with a Suspended License?Illinois can suspend or revoke your driver’s license for a number of reasons. Your license will be suspended if you commit three moving traffic violations within 12 months. Some driving offenses require an immediate suspension, such as driving under the influence. You can even lose your license for not paying child support. Being legally prohibited from driving is a major inconvenience if you are trying to hold down a job or go about your daily life. Some people are tempted to drive anyway, believing that it is unlikely that they will be caught. However, driving with a suspended or revoked license is a serious offense that can make your current situation much worse.

Penalties

Being caught while driving with a suspended or revoked driver’s license can be a petty offense, misdemeanor, or felony, depending on your circumstances:

  • Most violations are a Class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by as long as a year in jail and a fine of $2,500.
  • The violation is a traffic citation if your license was suspended for failing to pay parking tickets or child support.
  • The violation is a Class 4 felony if you have previously been convicted for driving with a suspended license or if your license was suspended for DUI or reckless homicide.
  • A second violation when your license was suspended for DUI or reckless homicide is a Class 2 felony.

In addition to these penalties, the suspension period for your driver’s license will be extended by the same amount of time as your original suspension.

Possible Defenses

Most people who are caught driving with a suspended license were stopped by police for a traffic violation or being involved in an accident. An officer can also stop you on suspicion of driving with a suspended license if they enter your license plate number into a database and see that the vehicle is registered to someone with a suspended license. There is little you can do to contest the charge if you knew that your license was suspended when you were driving. Common defense arguments may include:

  • You were not aware of your license suspension
  • Your license was not suspended
  • You were not in physical possession of the vehicle

Contact a Crystal Lake, Illinois, Criminal Defense Attorney

If your driver’s license has been suspended or revoked, it is important to get it reinstated as soon as you can. If your license was suspended for DUI, you may be able to obtain a Restricted Driving Permit that allows you to drive with limitations. A McHenry County criminal defense lawyer at Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC, can advise you on your options for regaining your driving privileges. To schedule a free consultation, call 815-338-3838.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K6-303

Illinois State Bar Association State Bar of Wisconsin Crystal Lake Chamber of Commerce Illinois Trial Lawyers Association McHenry County Bar Association
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