It Takes Less Than You Think to Lose your License in California
Driving in California is a privilege, not a right. The California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) oversees the driving privileges of California residents and can issue, suspend or revoke licenses. The DMV can suspend your driving privileges for many reasons, not all of which are related to driving. If your driving privileges are important to you, take a look at these common reasons for California license suspensions.
- Driving Under the Influence (DUI). Both the DMV and the criminal court can suspend your license if you are convicted of a DUI.
- Refusing to Submit to a Chemical Test. The law requires you to consent to a chemical test when arrested for a DUI in the State of California.
- Driving Without Insurance. This differs from driving without proof of insurance if you have a valid insurance policy.
- Failing to Report an Accident. You are required to report an accident to the DMV if there was property damage in excess of $1,000 or if anyone was injured (no matter how minor) or killed.
- Underage Drinking. Your license will also be suspended if you are underage and get a DUI or are caught with alcohol in your car, unless the container is full, sealed, and you have a parent or another approved person with you.
- Accumulated Driving Record Points. The DMV will suspend your license if you accumulate too many negligent operator points within a specified period.
- Vandalism. Your license can be suspended for a maximum of two years for a vandalism conviction.
- Failure to Appear in Court for a Traffic Ticket. If you fail to appear in traffic court, contact an attorney to see if you can set a new hearing date.
- Failure to Pay Child Support. The California Department of Child Support Services will sometimes suspend driving privileges as a method of enforcement.
As you can see, many of these offenses have nothing to do with driving. In these cases, the license suspension is meant to prompt action from the defendant, such as paying past due child support or appearing in court. If you fail to, the DMV will take swift action to immobilize you by suspending your license.
Awareness and Prevention
Many Californians rely on their driving privileges to get to work, school, or to take care of their family. Thus, when the DMV suspends driving privileges, the defendants' lives can be significantly disrupted. Because of this, it's important to be aware of the most common reasons why your California driving privileges could be suspended so you can protect your privilege to stay on the road. Take action before it's too late by speaking with an attorney about what you can do to save your license if you've received notice from the DMV that it will be suspended.
The DMV can take action against your driving privilege itself or carry out the suspension according to a court order. The good news is you can fight your license suspension whether it the DMV issues it or the court orders it. Speak with an attorney if you are facing a license suspension. You might be able to request an administrative hearing to challenge the suspension. An attorney can explain your options for fighting your suspension and help you take steps toward defending your license today.
There are many reasons why the DMV could suspend your license. The DMV can even suspend your license for offenses totally unrelated to driving. While an effective measure, suspending the driving privilege of someone who needs to pay child support or a traffic ticket can work against the defendant's efforts, especially if that person needs to drive for work. If you are facing a license suspension but need to stay on the road, speak with an experienced California driving crime defense attorney about what you can do to save your license.
Is your California license suspended? Visalia area DUI and driving crime defense attorney Christopher Martens can help you get your license reinstated and fight the charges you are facing so you can stay on the road. With over ten years of criminal defense experience, Mr. Martens has handled thousands of cases and has taken over 50 to trial. Attorney Christopher Martens has the skills and knowledge needed to defend your rights. Serving the Visalia and Fresno areas, The Law Offices of Christopher Martens can provide expert criminal defense counsel. Call our office at 559-967-7386 or email us at [email protected] for a free consultation.