Virginia Traffic Lawyer Explains Driving With a Suspended License and Related Offenses
Driving with a suspended license or without a license are serious offenses punishable by jail, high fines and additional suspension. If you have previous convictions, active jail time is likely and in some cases mandatory. There are ways to avoid these convictions and keep you out of jail. Don’t delay if you are facing charges of driving with a suspended license. Call us for a consultation with a qualified Virginia traffic lawyer.
Relevant Law Sections Related to Driving With a Suspended License
§ 46.2-300. Driving without license prohibited; penalties
No person, except those expressly exempted in §§ 46.2-303 through 46.2-308, shall drive any motor vehicle on any highway in the Commonwealth until such person has applied for a driver’s license, as provided in this article, satisfactorily passed the examination required by § 46.2-325, and obtained a driver’s license, nor unless the license is valid.
A violation of this section is a Class 2 misdemeanor. A second or subsequent violation of this section is a Class 1 misdemeanor.
Upon conviction under this section, the court may suspend the person’s privilege to drive for a period not to exceed 90 days.
§ 46.2-301. Driving while license, permit, or privilege to drive suspended or revoked
- In addition to any other penalty provided by this section, any motor vehicle administratively impounded or immobilized under the provisions of § 46.2-301.1 may, in the discretion of the court, be impounded or immobilized for an additional period of up to 90 days upon conviction of an offender for driving while his driver’s license, learner’s permit, or privilege to drive a motor vehicle has been suspended or revoked for
- a violation of § 18.2-36.1, 18.2-51.4, 18.2-266, 18.2-272, or 46.2-341.24 or a substantially similar ordinance or law in any other jurisdiction or
- driving after adjudication as an habitual offender, where such adjudication was based in whole or in part on an alcohol-related offense, or where such person’s license has been administratively suspended under the provisions of § 46.2-391.2. However, if, at the time of the violation, the offender was driving a motor vehicle owned by another person, the court shall have no jurisdiction over such motor vehicle but may order the impoundment or immobilization of a motor vehicle owned solely by the offender at the time of arrest. All costs of impoundment or immobilization, including removal or storage expenses, shall be paid by the offender prior to the release of his motor vehicle.
- Except as provided in §§ 46.2-304 and 46.2-357, no resident or nonresident
- whose driver’s license, learner’s permit, or privilege to drive a motor vehicle has been suspended or revoked or
- who has been directed not to drive by any court or by the Commissioner, or
- who has been forbidden, as prescribed by operation of any statute of the Commonwealth or a substantially similar ordinance of any county, city or town, to operate a motor vehicle in the Commonwealth shall thereafter drive any motor vehicle or any self-propelled machinery or equipment on any highway in the Commonwealth until the period of such suspension or revocation has terminated or the privilege has been reinstated or a restricted license is issued pursuant to subsection E. A clerk’s notice of suspension of license for failure to pay fines or costs given in accordance with § 46.2-395 shall be sufficient notice for the purpose of maintaining a conviction under this section. For the purposes of this section, the phrase “motor vehicle or any self-propelled machinery or equipment” shall not include mopeds.
- A violation of subsection B is a Class 1 misdemeanor. A third or subsequent offense occurring within a 10-year period shall include a mandatory minimum term of confinement in jail of 10 days. However, the court shall not be required to impose a mandatory minimum term of confinement in any case where a motor vehicle is operated in violation of this section in a situation of apparent extreme emergency which requires such operation to save life or limb.
- Upon a violation of subsection B, the court shall suspend the person’s license or privilege to drive a motor vehicle for the same period for which it had been previously suspended or revoked. In the event the person violated subsection B by driving during a period of suspension or revocation which was not for a definite period of time, the court shall suspend the person’s license, permit or privilege to drive for an additional period not to exceed 90 days, to commence upon the expiration of the previous suspension or revocation or to commence immediately if the previous suspension or revocation has expired.
- Any person who is otherwise eligible for a restricted license may petition each court that suspended his license pursuant to subsection D for authorization for a restricted license, provided that the period of time for which the license was suspended by the court pursuant to subsection D, if measured from the date of conviction, has expired, even though the suspension itself has not expired. A court may, for good cause shown, authorize the Department of Motor Vehicles to issue a restricted license for any of the purposes set forth in subsection E of § 18.2-271.1. No restricted license shall be issued unless each court that issued a suspension of the person’s license pursuant to subsection D authorizes the Department to issue a restricted license. Any restricted license issued pursuant to this subsection shall be in effect until the expiration of any and all suspensions issued pursuant to subsection D, except that it shall automatically terminate upon the expiration, cancellation, suspension, or revocation of the person’s license or privilege to drive for any other cause. No restricted license issued pursuant to this subsection shall permit a person to operate a commercial motor vehicle as defined in the Commercial Driver’s License Act (§ 46.2-341.1 et seq.). The court shall forward to the Commissioner a copy of its authorization entered pursuant to this subsection, which shall specifically enumerate the restrictions imposed and contain such information regarding the person to whom such a license is issued as is reasonably necessary to identify the person. The court shall also provide a copy of its authorization to the person, who may not operate a motor vehicle until receipt from the Commissioner of a restricted license. A copy of the restricted license issued by the Commissioner shall be carried at all times while operating a motor vehicle.
- Any person who operates a motor vehicle or any self-propelled machinery or equipment in violation of the terms of a restricted license issued pursuant to subsection E of § 18.2-271.1 is not guilty of a violation of this section but is guilty of a violation of § 18.2-272.
§ 18.2-272. Driving after forfeiture of license
Any person who drives or operates any motor vehicle, engine or train in the Commonwealth during the time for which he was deprived of the right to do so
- upon conviction of a violation of § 18.2-268.3 or of an offense set forth in subsection E of § 18.2-270,
- by § 18.2-271 or 46.2-391.2,
- after his license has been revoked pursuant to § 46.2-389 or 46.2-391, or
- in violation of the terms of a restricted license issued pursuant to subsection E of § 18.2-271.1, is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor except as otherwise provided in § 46.2-391, and is subject to administrative revocation of his driver’s license pursuant to §§ 46.2-389 and 46.2-391. Any person convicted of three violations of this section committed within a 10-year period is guilty of a Class 6 felony.
Nothing in this section or § 18.2-266, 18.2-270 or 18.2-271, shall be construed as conflicting with or repealing any ordinance or resolution of any city, town or county which restricts still further the right of such persons to drive or operate any such vehicle or conveyance.
- Regardless of compliance with any other restrictions on his privilege to drive or operate a motor vehicle, it shall be a violation of this section for any person whose privilege to drive or operate a motor vehicle has been restricted, suspended or revoked because of a violation of § 18.2-36.1, 18.2-51.4, 18.2-266, 18.2-268.3, 46.2-341.24, or a similar ordinance or law of another state or the United States to drive or operate a motor vehicle while he has a blood alcohol content of 0.02 percent or more.Any person suspected of a violation of this subsection shall be entitled to a preliminary breath test in accordance with the provisions of § 18.2-267, shall be deemed to have given his implied consent to have samples of his blood, breath or both taken for analysis pursuant to the provisions of § 18.2-268.2, and, when charged with a violation of this subsection, shall be subject to the provisions of §§ 18.2-268.1 through 18.2-268.12.
- Any person who drives or operates a motor vehicle without a certified ignition interlock system as required by § 46.2-391.01 is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor and is subject to administrative revocation of his driver’s license pursuant to §§ 46.2-389 and 46.2-391.