Driving is a privilege in North Carolina, not a right. As such, the state has considerable authority in regulating driver’s licenses. You can lose your driving privileges through revocation or suspension of your Charlotte driver’s license for many different reasons, which means you cannot legally operate a motor vehicle. If you are caught driving while license revoked (DWLR), you could face criminal charges Plus, the period of your license revocation or suspension is extended. Under the circumstances, it’s wise to work with the Charlotte suspended license lawyers from Randall & Stump, Criminal Defense Attorneys.
Our attorneys understand how a driver’s license suspension or revocation can have harsh consequences. Not being able to drive affects you personally and professionally, which is why we will dedicate ourselves helping you get back on the road. To schedule a free consultation with a skilled Charlotte traffic lawyer, call us today at (980) 237-4579 or reach out through our online contact form.
Driving with a Suspended License in North Carolina
The North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is the state agency tasked with regulating all aspects of licensing drivers. Because driving is a privilege, the DMV can take away your license for many different reasons, including some that don’t even involve driving.
Driving-Related License Suspension
Your license may be suspended or revoked for violating certain traffic laws in North Carolina, such as:
- A conviction for drunk or drugged driving under NC DWI laws
- Refusing a chemical test to measure your blood alcohol concentration (BAC)
- Reckless driving
- Excessive speeding
- Accumulating too many points on your driving record
- Operating a vehicle in violation of NC driver’s license restriction codes
Non-Driving License Suspension
You can also receive a license suspension or revocation for reasons that are unrelated to driving. Examples include:
- Failure to pay child support under a court order
- Not paying fines, court costs, or tickets for previous driving violations
- Failing to appear in court in any type of criminal case
- Not carrying auto insurance as required by law
- By request of another state agency
If you’re concerned that you may lose your license due to any of the above reasons, contact our Charlotte suspended license lawyers right away.
Notification of Suspended License
When the state takes action involving your driver’s license status, you will receive a written notification regarding the suspension or revocation. The length of the license suspension depends upon the specific reason behind it, such as:
- A first offense DWI in NC is a one-year suspension
- Subsequent drunk driving convictions could lead to a lengthier (sometimes permanent) suspended license
- There’s a one-year suspension for refusing a breathalyzer
- Your license could be suspended for three years for drag racing
- Speeding at 15 mph over the limit in a 55 mph zone could lead to a suspension of 30 days
- If you violate an ignition interlock restriction, you face a license restriction of one year
Penalties for Driving Without a License in Charlotte
If you’re arrested for operating a vehicle without a license, the charge is either a class 3 or class 1 misdemeanor. The punishments for such offenses are as follows:
Class 3 Misdemeanor
- Up to 20 days in jail
- Fines reaching $200
Class 1 Misdemeanor
- Up to 120 days in jail
- A discretionary fine as sentenced by the court
In addition to incarceration and fines, a DWLR conviction brings with it many collateral consequences. When you’re without the ability to drive, getting to and from work is a challenge, which could affect your current job and future employment opportunities. In addition to work-related issues, you could also find it difficult to complete daily tasks, get to and from school, and more.
When you’re facing the harsh statutory and collateral penalties of a criminal conviction, the best thing you can do for yourself is reach out to our skilled Charlotte suspended license lawyers from Randall & Stump, Criminal Defense Attorneys. With years of experience helping clients in your situation, we’re dedicated to helping you get back on the road.
Limited Driving Privileges
In some cases, even when your license has been suspended or revoked, North Carolina does have a law that allows you to drive in a limited capacity, for designated reasons. However, there are very strict eligibility rules regarding the limited driving privilege in NC. You may only qualify if your license to drive is “essential” for the purposes defined by NCGS § 20-179.3, including your job, school, court-ordered treatment, to fulfill community service requirements, or other reasons listed in the statute. Plus, you may also receive a limited driving privilege for household maintenance if you need your license to support your family.
The limited driving privilege in NC is even more restrictive for DWLRs that involve drunk driving. DWI limited driving privileges depend greatly on your unique circumstances, so you should consult with a driver’s license and DWI lawyer about your limited driving privilege options.
A Suspended License Attorney Will Protect Your Interests
The implications for driving with a suspended license or driving while your license is revoked are extensive and severe. It’s a mistake to represent yourself when the stakes include incarceration, fines, and loss of your driving privileges.
It’s important to retain a driver’s license attorney to represent you in connection with:
- DMV hearings and appeals
- Suspended license reinstatement
- Reinstatement of a license that’s been revoked
- DMV interlock hearings
- Getting your license back after a DWI