29 May 20 Tips: Will My Driver’s License be Suspended?
20 Tips: Will My Driver’s License be Suspended?
The privilege to drive may be one of the single most important privileges in today’s world, especially since not being able to drive can make it hard for you to get to and from work, not to mention the fact that it can affect your livelihood if you drive for a living. In New York, having your driving license suspended is more likely than you would imagine, as discussed at ny-defense.com, which is why this article will look to cover the New York laws governing license suspension so that you can know if and when your driver’s license may be suspended.
Reasons for license suspension
According to ny-defense.com, several reasons may lead to your driver’s license being suspended, and they include:
Multiple speeding violations
Drug or alcohol violations (DUI, DWI, etc.)
Failure to respond to traffic ticket or summons
Failure to report an accident
There are two types of suspensions: an indefinite suspension and a definite suspension.
What is an indefinite suspension?
An indefinite suspension means that your license will be indefinitely suspended until further action is taken to restore the license. If you receive an indefinite suspension order, it will tell you what you must do to remove the suspension.
Common reasons for indefinite suspensions
Failure to respond to court summons
If you ignore court summonses, you will most likely have your license suspended indefinitely. Additionally, overlooking a summons in some cases could result in the court issuing a warrant for your arrest (a bench warrant) which may result in you being arrested when you are pulled over for a minor traffic violation. Therefore, never ignore your court summons.
The DMV will suspend a vehicle (not the license of the owner as per ny-defense.com) if the insurance company informs DMV that the policy has lapsed, where the license plates had not been turned in. Given that many vehicle owners cancel the insurance policy of a vehicle that is no longer in use while the registration is unexpired, this has become an all-too-common occurrence with the availability of two-year vehicle registrations.
Failure to report an accident
If you are involved in an accident in which there is property damage exceeding $1,000, you must report it to Report of Motor Vehicle Accident (Form MV-104) within 10 days of the incident. Failure to do so can result in your license and the vehicle being suspended by the DMV.
Failure to pay a fine
Such suspensions will apply to out-of-state drivers as well. For instance, if you live outside of New York and plead guilty to a New York traffic violation, your privilege to drive in NY will be suspended if you don’t pay the fine and you will remain suspended until you pay it as covered at ny-defense.com. Alternatively, if you get a moving violation in any state and fail to pay that ticket, your New York license will also be suspended, except in the states of Montana, Oregon, Wisconsin, Alaska, Michigan, and California.
Failure to pay child support
All 50 states in the US impose license restrictions, including indefinite license suspension, for child support violators. In New York, if the non-custodial parent fails to pay an amount equal to four months of child support, they can expect their New York license to be suspended.
Other miscellaneous reasons
It is also worth noting that other miscellaneous reasons in New York can result in a suspended license. They include an unpaid judgment from a non-insured motorist, large unpaid state income taxes, a medical condition that affects your ability to drive safely, among others.
These are some of the reasons that may result in an indefinite suspension.
What is a definite suspension?
A definite suspension is when the DMV issues period-based suspensions ending on a specific date. If you receive a definite suspension order, it will tell you how long the suspension period will last. You can’t drive until the period ends, you pay a termination fee and have a valid driver’s license again as outlined at ny-defense.com.
Common reasons for definite suspensions
Moving violation while on probation
This suspension is typically issued when any two moving violations are committed during the period when one is still on probation, or a single more serious offense, including speeding, tailgating, or texting while driving. The suspension is typically issued for 60 days.
Accumulation of points
In New York, after accumulating 11 points or three speeding tickets within 18 months, as discussed at ny-defense.com, your driving privileges will be suspended. The 18-month period will begin from the date of the first violation, not the date of being found (or pleading) guilty. Taking the defensive driving course can bring your points down by up to 4 points, which can avoid a suspension in some cases, while also decreasing your insurance premium rates by 10%.
DWAI or DWI for alcohol or drugs
The penalties and length of license suspension for such an offense will vary greatly depending on age, substance, type of license, and whether or not you acquiesced to chemical testing. Generally, DWAI is when your BAC level is between .05% and .08%, while DWI is anything above .08%.
These are some of the reasons that may result in a definite suspension.
DWI and DWAI license suspension
As mentioned in the previous point, DWI and DWAI penalties and suspension vary on several factors, including age, substance, license type, and chemical test refusal:
DWAI/Alcohol – Your license will be suspended for 90 days and you may face 15 days of jail time plus $300-$500 in fines, in addition to other penalties.
DWAI/Alcohol and drugs combination – Your license will be revoked for at least 6 months plus $500-$1,000 in fines and potentially up to one year of jail time.
DWAI/Drugs – Your license will be revoked (DWI) or suspended (DWAI) for at least 6 months, $500-$1,000 in fines and jail time up to one year.
Chemical test refusal – Refusing to take a breath, blood, or urine test when pulled over will generally result in at least one year of license suspension (18 months for CDL drivers) plus $500 in fines ($550 for commercial drivers).
DWI for CDL drivers – The laws governing commercial vehicle drivers are harsher and the penalties steeper than regular drivers. If you are convicted of a single DWI offense while operating a commercial vehicle, your CDL will be suspended for a 1-year minimum and 3 years minimum if you were transporting hazardous material. For s second DWI offense, your license will be suspended for life. After 10 years, you may request a waiver. If you refuse a chemical test, your CDL privileges will be suspended for at least one year.
License suspension under age 21
Typically, if you are caught driving with a BAC of .02% or higher, you have violated zero-tolerance law and face the following penalties as discussed at ny-defense.com:
Suspended license for 6 months
Penalties of up to $215
$100 to terminate the suspension
Possible enrollment in NY Drinking Driver Program (DDP)
Possible breath alcohol ignition interlock device (IID) installation
You should also note that the above only applies to a first offender. A second offense will result in license revocation plus all of the above. In the case of DWI involving drugs, your license will be revoked.
Suspension hearings and appeals in New York
Note the following about suspension hearings and appeals in New York:
New York DMV Administrative Hearings – Hearings typically take place at the various DMV offices around the state. You must appear in person and cannot plead guilty by mail and pay all suspension fines. The only person than represent you is an attorney.
Postponing your hearing – You can postpone the date of your hearing if necessary by phone, in person, or sometimes online. The DMV must receive your request no later than 10 days before your current court date. If you are an out-of-state driver, for example, and would like to schedule your hearing earlier because of your plans to leave NY, you can request that as well.
Appealing your hearing decision – You can administratively appeal your hearing only within 30 days after the decision has been handed down. You can apply for your hearing either by mail or online.
New York Courts that deal with license suspension – In the 5 boroughs of NYC, Rochester, and Buffalo, the DMV Traffic Violations Bureau (TVB) handles all non-criminal moving violations, freeing up the NYC Criminal Courts to deal with cases such as DWI or driving with a suspended or revoked license. Elsewhere in the state, the justice courts (City, Village, or Town) typically handle traffic matters, as well as misdemeanor criminal cases, while the DMV offices handle administrative hearings.
How do I reinstate my suspended NY driver’s license?
Once all fees have been paid in full, or other required corrective measures are taken, your license suspension will be cleared within two business days according to ny-defense.com. In the case of a definite suspension, the suspension will be terminated upon the date indicated if fees have already been paid.
Suspension termination fees
Suspension may involve several fines and fees, and suspension termination is a charge in itself. Generally, the fee is $70 per suspension, but it is capped at $400 per court. The termination fee payment options are to the DMV office, or by mail in some cases. In all cases, it all depends on the origination of your suspension. If the problem was an unpaid fine at a local justice court, you can only pay that court, for example.
When do you get your license back?
Your license will not be “cleared” until all fees have been paid, or other defaults corrected. If you have a definite suspension, the suspension will not end until the date indicated as covered at ny-defense.com. If you pay the termination fee before this date, your new license will be mailed to you not later than three days after the suspension date. Your license will NOT be mailed in any of the following scenarios:
The license has expired
The license is a CDL
The license is a restricted or conditional license
There is another suspension or revocation on the license
What happens if I drive with a suspended license?
If you drive with a suspended license, then you risk spending a night in jail. In the 5 boroughs of NYC, there is a “no questions asked” attitude where the offender will find themselves spending 24 hours ‘in the system’ waiting for the right to speak to a judge. Driving with a suspended license is a misdemeanor that comes with a possible jail term, hefty fines and surcharges, as well as a criminal record.
Revoked vs suspended
If you receive an order from DMV saying your license or driving privilege is revoked, then this means your license has been canceled and you must get a new one when the revocation period ends. In most cases, before you can get a new license, you must first request approval from DMV when the revocation period is over. A suspension simply means your license or driving privilege will be taken away for some time.
If your NY license has been suspended or revoked, or you are facing charges that could lead to the same, then don’t hesitate to reach out to the top-rated ny-defense.com for assistance on how to proceed.