Washington State Driving with a Suspended License: Legal Consequences and Solutions

In the state of Washington, individuals who operate a motor vehicle without a valid license face legal penalties and potential complications that can impact various aspects of their lives. Understanding the intricacies of driving with a suspended license and its potential repercussions is crucial to make informed decisions and take appropriate action. The Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer prides itself on its ability to assist individuals in regards to legal matters such as these. We employ a team of incredibly experienced attorneys that will work diligently to build a strong defense case for you.

What is Suspension Vs. Revocation?

While both suspension and revocation both remove your driving privileges, they have different requirements for regaining those privileges. Generally speaking, suspension allows for alternatives when driving and it usually lasts less than a year. Revocation is more serious as there are no options available for you to drive during the revocation period, which is usually more than a year.

Legal Consequences

Driving with a suspended license in Washington can carry potential penalties such as fines, imprisonment, and further suspension of the driver’s license. The severity of the consequences can vary depending on the circumstances, including the reason for the initial suspension and any previous offenses.

Driving With License Suspended in the 1st Degree: If you are driving with a suspended or revoked license and are a habitual offender, you may be charged with Driving With License Suspended in the First Degree. A habitual offender is defined as an individual who, in the past 5 years, has had 3 or more convictions related to traffic crimes, or has had 20 or more traffic violations. This offense is classified as a Gross Misdemeanor and punishable by up to 364 days in jail and up to $5,000.00 in fines.

Driving With License Suspended in the 2nd Degree: Driving with a suspended or revoked license can be charged as Driving With License Suspended in the second Degree. This crime is categorized as a Gross Misdemeanor and can carry penalties that range up to 364 days in jail and $5,000.00 in fines.

Driving With License Suspended in the 3rd Degree: You can be charged with Driving With License Suspended if you are driving with a suspended or revoked license due to failure to respond to a traffic ticket or if your license has expired. This offense is a Misdemeanor, and if convicted you may face up to 90 days in jail and up to $1,000.00 in fines.

A Driving With a Suspended License conviction can have additional consequences such as the extension of the initial suspension period or even permanent revocation of driving privileges. Additionally, the offense will show up on the offender’s driving record, potentially leading to increased insurance premiums and difficulty in obtaining car insurance in the future.

Why Is My License Suspended?

The Department of Licensing(DOL) has a free tool that informs you of what is needed to reinstate your license. If you still have more questions, a driving abstract will provide more information about why your license is suspended and when you will be able to reinstate. Finally, a discussion with a knowledgeable attorney can further clarify what your next steps should be. Having a Washington suspended license need not end in a criminal charge.

What Are My Options?

If you are only facing a minor violation, you may be able to appeal your suspension to the Washington DMV. You will have a period of 15 days after your initial suspension notice, the steps you can take to appeal will be listed on your Washington DMV Suspended License form. You may also be eligible to take a driving course offered by DMV to defer your sentence.

For more major convictions such as DUI, and Occupational/Restricted License may be an option to pursue as well. This license will allow you to drive to any important locations such as work or school. An application for this license may involve additional fees as well.

How Can We Help You?

Driving with a suspended license in the state of Washington is a serious offense with potentially severe consequences. Seeking professional legal assistance is highly recommended when facing charges related to driving with a suspended license. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help assess the case, explore available legal defenses, and work towards a favorable resolution. By understanding the intricacies of the law and taking appropriate action, individuals can minimize the potential impact on their lives and work towards reinstating their driving privileges responsibly. The attorneys at our office can help you understand what needs to be done, and if needed, represent you in court with a strong case built for you.

Don’t hesitate, call the Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer today at (360) 334-6277 to schedule a free consultation with one of our highly qualified attorneys. Our attorneys are dedicated to helping you with any legal questions or concerns you may have.