Maryland Driving on a Suspended License Lawyer
Since the law was rewritten in 2006, driving on a suspended driver’s license: [Maryland Transportation Code Section 16-303 (2)], is charged as a serious (“jailable”) offense. Before that, you would have been able to pay the ticket and not have to appear in court. The current penalty, hereby, involves as much as 12 months in jail, with a fine of no more than $1,000. A conviction also adds up to 12 Maryland MVA (Motor Vehicle Administration) demerit points to your record. Because of these penalties, it may be a good idea to speak with an experienced Maryland suspended license lawyer to help minimize the harm.
Maryland judges have a good deal of latitude when it comes to sentencing. Some are lenient and others take these charges very seriously. It all goes back to the fact that any jailable offense is meant to get your attention. If suspects don’t show the court a respect for the offense they are charged with, that person behind the bench will remind them that they should, with a potential jail sentence.
Driving without a license is not the same as a suspect simply forgetting to take their wallet with them and then not having their license when they are stopped for some other traffic violation. This is charged as “failure to display,” which does not involve jail time and only carries a $50 fine once the suspect presents his or her license to the court. Driving suspended actually refers to an individual’s privilege to drive, which is why hiring a Maryland suspended license lawyer may be in the best interest of those accused.
Suspended License Convictions For Teens
Though being allowed to drive is a privilege, being able to drive is an essential part of life for most Maryland residents. Without a license, getting to-and-from work, school, doctors’ appointments, even the grocery store or the pharmacy can be nearly impossible. Being convicted of driving with a suspended license, revoked license (or no license at all) can seriously affect anyone’s life, and livelihood, which is why is may be a good idea to contact a suspended license lawyer in Maryland who can minimize the harm done.
If you are a teenager who has yet to receive your first driver’s license (learner’s permit), that conviction could make you wait longer before you can apply for one. And during that nine month “first learning period,” if you are ticketed for driving without a licensed adult in the front seat, your penalty may be the same as driving with a suspended license. Once convicted, you will likely have to get a new learners permit when your suspension ends. This means you have to start the entire “first level learner’s process” again before you can have a provisional license, the second step to your full driver’s license.
Provisional licenses carry an 18 month “probation period” in which you must also maintain a clean driving record. The only difference between a provisional license and a learners permit is that you no longer need to have a licensed driver in the front seat. However, there are still a few restrictions. If you are convicted of any provisional license violation or moving violation, your privilege is lifted and you can’t drive. When that privilege is reinstated, you have to start the provisional period over at the beginning.
Penalties for Driving with a Suspended License
When you have a suspended license, you cannot secure liability insurance. If you’re caught driving an uninsured vehicle, that’s another jailable offense on top of driving on a suspended license violation. The penalties for a conviction of both without can be:
- First Offense – up to a year in jail and/or a fine up to $1,000, along with five MVA points
- Second or Subsequent Offense – up to two years in jail and/or a $2,000 fine, and five more MVA points
In both of the above instances, the jail sentence for a juvenile is lower, and the sentence is likely served in a juvenile facility.
There are also MVA administrative penalties for driving with lapsed insurance. This can involve fines that begin at $150 for the first month and $7 for each additional day without it, with a cap of $2,500 for each calendar year.
The fines and potential jail time aside, for driving on a suspended or revoked license are difficult enough to deal with. The long-term ramifications of:
- Continued suspension
- Being forced to delay (or begin) your process of getting a full license if you are a beginning driver; and
- Having to pay higher insurance rates once you are permitted to drive again
For these reasons you may want to find an experienced Maryland suspended license lawyer if you’re ticketed for driving on a suspended (or revoked) license. One can help you avoid a conviction that could seriously jeopardize your driving privileges and your mobility.