Losing your driving privileges can be devastating. Most people rely on their ability to drive to and from work, school, the grocery store, doctor’s appointments, and to visit family and friends. Having your license suspended does not just impede your freedom of movement. It can impede every aspect of your life.
That is why it may be tempting to drive somewhere while your license has been suspended for one reason or another. You tell yourself you will just be gone for a few minutes to run to the grocery store but if you are stopped, you will face even more dire consequences than losing your license in the first place.
If you have been charged with driving while suspended, you should not handle the charge on your own. Driving without your license was a poor decision. Consulting with an experienced criminal defense attorney is a wise one.
Michael J. Englert, Attorney at Law, represents clients in Independence, Blue Springs, and Lee’s Summit Missouri charged with driving with a suspended license. A former prosecuting attorney and municipal judge, Attorney Englert understands this violation from every perspective.
There are multiple violations that may result in the penalty of license suspension in Missouri, including suspension or loss due to:
Accumulation of points for traffic tickets
Points for moving violations
Judgment following an auto accident
Administrative DUI or DUI under a zero-tolerance policy
Failure to comply with an order for an ignition interlock device
School bus and other traffic safety violations
Failure to file an accident report
Motor fuel theft
Refusal to submit to drug or alcohol test
Failure to appear in court in Missouri or another state
Abuse and Lose violation or Minor in Possession
Failure to maintain insurance
Failure to pay child support
Five- or 10-year license denial
Striking a highway worker or emergency responder
Operating after a suspension is a misdemeanor in Missouri. Penalties for driving with a suspended license for a first offense, a Class D misdemeanor, may result in a fine of up to $500. Second and third convictions rise to a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and up to $2,000 in fines. Penalties could also include a community service requirement.
You may be eligible for Limited Driving Privileges, also called a “hardship license,” under certain circumstances. A hardship license will allow you to operate a vehicle legally for very specific purposes, such as driving to and from work.
You may be eligible if:
Your Missouri license is eligible for reinstatement and you have met all requirements;
You have no convictions within the past five years for any felony involving a motor vehicle;
You are not a commercial driver;
You have no convictions for failing to take a driving or medical test as required by the Department of Revenue;
You have paid in full a motor vehicle accident judgment and have complied with all related orders;
You have paid in full any tickets in Missouri or another state and have complied with all related orders;
Your suspension is not the result of a criminal or administrative DWI conviction;
You are currently a resident of, or work, or attend school in Missouri.
You must meet many criteria to obtain Limited Driving Privileges (or Restricted Driving Privileges if your suspension is related to a DWI conviction) in Missouri. Applying for those privileges is a far wiser choice than risking further penalties for driving while your license is suspended.
If you want to know if you can get a hardship license, if you are tempted to drive while your license is suspended, or if you have been charged with operating after suspension, you should talk to a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney. Attorney Englert has the legal experience and expertise to help you achieve the best outcome possible.
If you have been charged with driving while suspended in Independence, Blue Springs, or Lee’s Summit, Missouri, Michael J. Englert, Attorney at Law today to discuss your case. Take the first step and discuss your legal options with Attorney Englert. Call now.