A license suspension mean that your license will be temporarily invalid for a set period of time. In Florida, driving with a suspended license can be a serious offense. It can lead to criminal charges and potential jail time. There are multiple reasons why your license would get suspended like civil matters or criminal offenses. Below are a couple that would lead to a suspension or revocation of your license.
- Refusing to take a breathalyzer test
- Too many points on your license
- DUI conviction
- Not paying child support
Criminal offenses that can lead to suspension
Certain criminal convictions can lead to your license suspended. The convictions would involve negligence involving a vehicle. These can either be felonies or misdemeanor offenses.
Here are a few offenses that can lead to your license being suspended or revoked.
- Murder or manslaughter resulting from driving
- Driving while under the influence (DUI)
- Felony convictions involving a vehicle
- Hit and run
- Three previous convictions of reckless driving within the past year
Consequences of driving with a suspended license
In Florida, if you are found driving with a suspended license then you can be charged with a misdemeanor. For a first conviction you can be charged for a second-degree misdemeanor. You can be charged a fine of up to $500 and a maximum jail sentence for 60 days. For a second conviction you can be charged with a first-degree misdemeanor. The fine increases to up to $1,000 and the maximum jail sentence is one year.
Once you are convicted for a third time of driving with a suspended license then it becomes a third-degree felony. The maximum fine is $5,000 and the maximum prison sentence is five years. After three convictions you will be labeled as a habitual traffic offender. This can lead to your license being revoked for up to up to five years.
According to the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, this is how many points are needed for your license to be suspended.
- 12 points within 12 months – 30-day suspension
- 18 points within 18 months – 90-day suspension
- 24 points within 36 months – 1 year suspension
In Florida, you can apply for a hardship license that allows you to drive during your suspension period. Unlike a regular license, this license has set restrictions that allow you to only drive to specific destinations. If you are found to be driving somewhere that is not approved, then you can be penalized. You can apply for the license on your own or you could have a lawyer assist you.
To receive a hardship license there are a few things you need to do. You must complete an online Florida ADI course; the course is 12 hours long. After that you must provide your driving record to the DMV. The DMV will provide you with paperwork to fill out and then you will wait to hear on whether or not you will be approved.
Reinstating your license
When your suspension period is over you have to go get your license reinstated. To reinstate your license, you would have to pay a reinstatement fee. For a suspended license the fee will be $45, for a revoked license it would be $75. Depending on the reasoning for the license suspension, you may be required to pay additional fees. If the license was suspended do to a DUI, you may be charged an additional $130.