Defending the Accused in Criminal and Traffic Courts Across Virginia Since 2012

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Driving While Suspended or Revoked

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Driving with a suspended or revoked license can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony depending on your past driving record and what happened to bring you to the officer’s attention at the time of the stop.  A driving while suspended or revoked conviction always results in a license suspension to begin after your current suspension.  Even a first offense can sometimes leave you spending a few days in the local county jail.  Some subsequent offenses have mandatory minimum jail sentences that do not qualify for “good time” credit.  These harsh penalties are in addition to significant fines.

If you’ve been charged with driving while suspended or revoked, you will need the assistance of an attorney in court.  Call Jen Raimo today at (703) 591-4868 to schedule a free consultation.  You will learn what to expect in court and form a strategy to minimize the risk of conviction and incarceration.

What if I didn’t know my license was suspended?

The short answer is that you can’t be convicted of driving with a suspended or revoked license if you didn’t know it was suspended in the first place. This tends to happen when a person does not tell the DMV she’s moved. The DMV suspends the person for some reason and mails a notice to the driver by certified mail. However, the notice is undeliverable and gets returned to the DMV.

Sometimes, a suspended driver has legal notice but doesn’t realize it when he’s stopped by the police.  Probably the most common way this happens is after a criminal or traffic court case where the defendant does not pay a fine or court costs on time. When a person cannot pay court costs on the day of court, the person is often required to sign a paper in two places. The person isn’t really given a chance to read it. They’re just handed the paper and a pen and told “sign here and here.” Then the person leaves and forgets all about it. But, the paper tells the person how much he owes for the fine and court costs and advises him his license will automatically be suspended if he does not pay in full by a certain date. That signature on the form is considered legal notice that the license is suspended. If that happened to you, you can be convicted of driving while suspended. The two best things you can do to help get yourself out of trouble are to get your license back before court (even if it means postponing your court date) and bring a lawyer to court with you to defend you in court.


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