Driving on Suspended or Revoked License
If your license has been suspended or revoked by the Virginia Department of Motor
Vehicles or a court, and you know it, and you drive a motor vehicle on any road or highway you
are guilty of driving on a suspended or revoked license. This offense is a Class One
misdemeanor the punishment for which is listed below. Note that a third or subsequent
conviction results in a mandatory minimum jail sentence of ten days. Also that a conviction
results in the further suspension of the license. This punishment in itself operates to extend the
total suspension periods as suspensions run consecutively, not concurrently.
If you are charged with driving on a suspended license many courts will consider
a resolution more favorable if the person charged has obtained a valid license prior to the
trial date. Additionally, if that isn’t possible because of financial reasons but the person
has made reasonable attempts to comply with the reinstatement process (ie: making partial
payments of fines and costs owed to courts or obtaining a restricted license) the court
will often fashion a sentence acknowledging those efforts. Such results are specific
to each court and judge so it is best to be represented by a lawyer who is familiar with
that court or judge.
You can find out what must be done to obtain a valid license by obtaining a “Compliance
Summary” from the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles. There is no charge for this
document and it can be obtained at any office of the Department or online at its web site:
www.dmvnow.com It is often helpful to purchase a current driving record also as that could
aid in resolving any conviction issues.
Section 46.2-301( E ) of the code of Virginia permits the issuance of a restricted license
if the suspension was the result of failure to pay fines and costs. An agreement to pay the
fines and costs must be entered into between the individual suspended and the court where
those are due. Very often this must be done in several courts. When this occurs I recommend
to my clients that they contact the Drive to Work Program who will assist with that process.
The web site is:>www.drivetowork.org
Punishments for Driving on Suspended License
Virginia Code Section: 46.2-301:
Class One misdemeanor
12 months in jail
Fine of up to $2, 500.00
3rd or subsequent convictions result in a mandatory 10 days in jail.
- License suspension:
For the same period as suspended or up to 90 days if suspension is for an indefinite period.
- Vehicle impoundment:
Driver’s vehicle may be impounded pursuant to Section
46.2-301 (A) and 46.2-301.1
Virginia Code Section: 18.2-272
Where a person is granted a restricted license by order of a court after being found guilty
of DUI , and operates a motor vehicle in violation of the restricted license terms, this section
applies resulting in a Class One Misdemeanor conviction. It also allows the Virginia Department
of Motor Vehicles to suspend the license for an addition one year. During that period of time
no restricted license is granted.