Driving with a suspended or revoked license is a major legal offense in California and other states as well, and the statutes strictly prohibit any such activity. The license may be held suspended due to a number of reasons, but if you are caught driving with a revoked or suspended license, then there are some very strict penalties and charges by the DMV and also the court.
California law with the Vehicle Code Section 14601, clearly states the ruling on driving on a suspended license as,
“No person shall drive a motor vehicle at any time when that person’s driving privilege is suspended or revoked…, if the person so driving has knowledge of the suspension or revocation.”
While all states hold the act of driving without a license as a major legal offense, the penalties they charge might vary a bit. In essence, the penalties imposed on an individual found to be driving in spite of a suspended license, mostly contain similar charges. Anyone found to be driving on a suspended license can expect all or some of the consequences:
- Charged with substantial fine amounts.
- A repeat offender of the offense can expect to pay even more than the normal substantial charges for this legal offense.
- Additional license suspension time as penalty
- Community service time is also a possibility in some states. The service may be in addition to jail time or in lieu of it
- Jail sentence. In states like California where driving on a suspended license is a major offense, offender is sentenced to time in jail. In some states, the time in prison can be up to one year.
- More points can be added to the driving record as a penalty
- Mandatory enrollment is also a possibility in some cases, in a substance or alcohol abuse program or any driver improvement school.
- Stricter levels of DMV scrutiny at the time of reinstating the license. This can mean steeper fees for license reinstatement and even providing any proof for auto insurance.
- Possibility of being charged with a felony which comes with long term legal penalties and consequences. With a felony charge, the offender can be prevented from holding some business licenses, exercising the right to vote or running for office, and even owning any firearms.
The offender might also face stricter penalties if they are found driving on a suspended license, and caught while committing any major traffic violation, like reckless driving or driving under the influence.
One other problem that such offenders might face, involves expecting to pay higher amounts of car insurance premiums. While it depends upon an insurance provider, but in many cases, it is proven that many reputable insurance companies will probably hold the individual with a record as a possible red flag. This way, there would also be a significant spike in the coverage rates as well.
Thus, driving without a license can have strict legal as well as other problems.
If you have been charged with driving on a suspended license or need to know the legal details of such a case with penalties and charges, consult Kosnett Law for legal assistance.