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License Suspension Vs. Revocation

Close-Up Of Gavel On Table — Fayetteville, NC — Britt Carl L Jr

The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has the mandate to revoke or suspend your license depending on a few factors like age, traffic offenses, or medical conditions. This means that once your license is revoked or suspended, you can’t legally operate a vehicle as your license is now invalid.

Note that license revocation is not the same as suspension, as one is a permanent action while the other is temporary. Read about the differences between a suspended license and a revoked license below.

What Is a Suspended Driver’s License?

A suspended driver’s license means the driver’s license is invalid over a temporary period, and while it’s invalid, you can’t legally drive.

Two types of suspended licensing exist: definite and indefinite. With the definite suspension, the license suspension is lifted once the period is over, and you’d have to pay a stipulated amount of termination fees depending on the state. With the indefinite suspension, you have no specific period under which your license is invalid; instead, you must perform a task for the suspension to lift. For example, you may need to pay for your traffic tickets.

Another reason your license may be under an indefinite suspension is if the license is under administrative review. This means that you probably have a medical condition that makes you a danger on the road, and the DMV must look into your case. So, until they review and give a verdict, your license remains suspended indefinitely.

Your license can be suspended for a few reasons, such as:

  • Traffic offenses
  • The accumulated number of traffic tickets on your license over time
  • Convictions after illegal transportation of alcoholic beverages or drugs
  • Convictions of excessive speeding, reckless driving, or aggressive driving
  • Driving without liability insurance

You shouldn’t drive with a suspended license lest you attract more penalties and possible license revocation. What’s worse, if you get involved in an accident, the charges could escalate from a misdemeanor to a felony with jail terms.

Luckily, with license suspensions, you can reinstate your driver’s license after some time by applying for reinstatement and paying your dues or restoration fees that could amount to $65 and suspended licensing from driving impaired costing $130.

What Is a Revoked Driver’s License?

A revoked driver’s license is the end of the line for that license as it remains invalid permanently. Prevalent reasons that warrant a license revocation include:

  • Driving without auto insurance
  • Presenting false information and statements during a DMV application
  • Having repeat DUI offenses 
  • Getting convictions for serious traffic offenses 
  • Failing DMV road tests 
  • Being advanced in age 
  • Having a serious medical condition 
  • Committing vehicular homicide 
  • Getting Convictions for offenses related to drugs, alcohol, or explosives
  • Failing to stop after a crash
  • Using a vehicle in the commission of a felony

Additionally, your license can be revoked over non-traffic offenses, for example, when you fail to comply with a child support order, though this applies to just a few states.

Although a license revocation is permanent, motorists can get a license again. You first submit a request or hearing with the state DMV. Upon approval, you must pay civil penalties and go through the licensing process anew, meaning you’ll have to do a road and a written test again. If you pass the tests, you will be issued a new license instead of reinstating your old one.

Driving with a revoked license may carry the same penalties as driving with a suspended license. For example, in North Carolina, most traffic offenses are class 1 misdemeanors, but in the case of driving impaired with a revoked or suspended license, the offense escalates to a Class 3 misdemeanor. Moreover, fines will be up to $200 with a possible jail term. 

The laws under personal injury, auto accidents, and DWI can be a little too much for you to understand. This is why you should have a lawyer with you or seek legal advice for such matters. 

Contact our legal team today for help with criminal law, personal injuries, or traffic violations. We are happy to discuss any questions or concerns you may have.

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