Turning sixteen and passing a driver’s license test is a right of passage for every American teenager, but every driver’s license comes with conditions. You already know that speeding, running red lights, drinking and driving, and texting while driving can get you into trouble, but did you know that criminal charges also threaten the validity of your driver’s license?
It’s true. Criminal charges, even those unrelated to driving, can strip you of your driving privileges and force you into the inconvenient position of carpooling, riding your bike, or relying on public transportation for months or even years.
What Crimes Can Be Punished With a Driving Suspension?
Your driver’s license can be suspended as a result of serious and petty crimes alike. Failing to pay a traffic ticket, neglecting to pay child support, and refusing to attend traffic school are three relatively minor reasons that the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles can strip you of your driver’s license. However, more serious crimes qualify as well, including possession of drugs, fleeing and eluding the police, and racing on a public street. As Clearwater DUI attorneys, we’ve seen it all.
Are You A Habitual Traffic Offender?
You are a habitual traffic offender if you have been sentenced for violating the same Florida traffic laws three or more times in the past five years. This means you will have your driving privileges suspended, canceled, or even entirely revoked for a period of five or more years. Some qualifying offenses in this situation include DUIs, driving with a suspended license, and leaving the scene of an accident.
What Will Happen If You’re Caught Driving on a Suspended License?
The first time that you are caught driving on a suspended Florida license, you are guilty of a 2nd degree misdemeanor. This means you are imprisoned for no more than 60 days or fined $500. If you make the same mistake a second time, your punishment increases to a 1st degree misdemeanor, which means that you face imprisonment for up to one year or a fine of $1,000.
If your license has been suspended due to a crime, it is essential you contact a criminal defense attorney in Tampa, Florida immediately. There may be steps your attorney can take to reinstate your driving privileges.