(Revised October 8, 2013)
There are all kinds of reasons that a person’s license may get suspended. Here are some of the more common ones I see.
The first one is failure to take care of a ticket. If you get a ticket, you’ve got to resolve it in some way. If you just ignore it, the court will note you as having “failed to appear.” If you don’t take care of the case within 20 days after that, the court will notify DMV, and they will send you a letter telling you that unless you resolve the case your license will be revoked. If you still don’t resolve it, DMV revokes your license. Then, three months — or three years — later you get stopped at a license check or for another speeding ticket and are informed that your license is revoked, which is a very serious matter. The officer may very well arrest a person charged with driving while license revoked (also known as “DWLR”). Perhaps even worse, DWLR carries eight insurance points (which would result in a 220% increase in your insurance rates for three years).
At that point, I may get a call. What we have to do is take care of both the old ticket and the new one. We file a motion to put the old ticket back on the court docket and work out a plea. Then, once that’s cleared up, the D.A. is often willing to allow the person to plead to the reduced charge of simply driving without a license (only one insurance point) or will consent to allowing the person to have a prayer for judgment continued, which may not result in any insurance points.
Another common reason people get their license revoked is for speeding higher than 80 mph, or for speeding more than 15 mph over the limit while at the same time driving in excess of 55 mph. Those are automatic thirty-day suspensions. (N.C.G.S. 20-16.1).
Yet another cause of a license suspension is getting convicted within a twelve month period of: two charges of speeding in excess of 55 mph; or a charge speeding more that 55 mph and a charge of reckless driving, or a charge of speeding in excess of 55 mph and a charge of aggressive driving. (N.C.G.S. 20-16).
If any of the above situations might apply to you, please give me a call at 919-683-2175. You may think you have no hope to keep your license, but all of us make mistakes and I have found that District Attorneys and judges are usually willing to work with people to help them avoid some of these harsh outcomes. Sometimes we just have to ask for a second — or a third — chance.