Misdemeanor Driving With A Suspended License In Florida
Knowingly driving with a suspended license for a first and second offense are misdemeanors. A first offense for knowingly driving with a suspended license is a second degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 60 days in jail, 6 months probation and a $500 fine. A second offense for knowingly driving with a suspended license is a first degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 1 year in jail, 1 year on probation and a $1,000 fine. A third or subsequent offense for driving with a suspended license is a third degree felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison, 5 years probation and a $5,000 fine.
If you get any combination of 3 driving while license suspended convictions and/or DUI convictions within a five year period the Florida Department Of Highway Safety And Motor Vehicles(DHSMV) will classify you as a habitual traffic offender and, consequently, will revoke your driving privilege for 5 years. So basically 3 strikes in 5 years and you sit the bench for 5 years in the driving game. You cannot even apply for a hearing for a hardship license for 1 year and just because you apply for a hardship license after 1 year does not mean DHSMV is going to give it to you. So no driving for at least 1 year and then maybe DHSMV will allow you to drive for the next 4 years for business or employment purposes only.
A driving privilege restricted to “business purposes only” means a driving privilege that is limited to any driving necessary to maintain livelihood, including driving to and from work, necessary on-the-job driving, driving for educational purposes, and driving for church and for medical purposes. A driving privilege restricted to “employment purposes only” means a driving privilege that is limited to driving to and from work and any necessary on-the-job driving required by an employer or occupation.
The officer does not have to arrest you for driving with a suspended license. An officer can just issue you a citation to appear in court but even though you were not arrested this is still a criminal charge and all the above-mentioned information still applies so you can still go to jail or prison when you appear in court to answer to the knowingly driving with a suspended license charge.
If the officer believes that you did not know your license was suspended then the officer will not arrest you and instead will give you a ticket for unknowingly driving with a suspended license which is a civil infraction. It is important to know that a conviction for unknowingly driving with a suspended license still counts as a strike towards being classified as a habitual traffic offender and losing your license for 5 years.
If you have been charged with misdemeanor driving with a suspended license please contact Chris S. Boatright, P.A. at 407-740-8300 to discuss your case. Chris is a former misdemeanor driving with a suspended license prosecutor who has been defending people charged with driving with a suspended license for over 18 years. If driving is important to you then put his knowledge and experience to work protecting your driver’s license and your record.
Misdemeanor driving with a suspended license charges can be beaten in court for many reasons. Chris has beaten them for many clients and he may be able to beat them for you. Call 407-740-8300 for a free consultation.