If you get caught driving under a suspended driver’s license in Ohio, you could face jail time and hefty fines.
The penalties you face will depend on the reason the court originally suspended your license.
If you are convicted of driving under suspension (DUS), you could also face an even longer suspension of your license.
What Is the Penalty for Driving with a Suspended License in Ohio?
In Ohio, driving under suspension is typically a first-degree misdemeanor offense that carries up to six months in jail. You also face up to $1,000 in fines. The court may also:
- Impound your license plates,
- Immobilize your vehicle, or
- Order you to perform community service.
If you are convicted a third time for DUS, you face criminal forfeiture of your vehicle.
Finally, you will face an extension of your license suspension of up to one year. When you do get your license back, you must pay reinstatement and service fees. You may also have to take a driving course and a written test to get your license back. Repeat DUS offenses could subject you to having your driver license revoked permanently.
What Are the Possible Reasons for Driver License Suspension in Ohio?
You can lose your driver license in Ohio for reasons that include:
- OVI/DUI conviction,
- Reckless operation of a vehicle,
- Lack of registration or insurance,
- Default on your child support, and
- Excessive traffic violations.
If you fail to appear for a court date or default on a judgment, the court also has the option of suspending your license.
One of the most common reasons for license suspension is getting arrested for DUI or OVI. When the police arrest you on DUI charges, your license is automatically suspended.
You can appeal the suspension through the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV). However, you have only five days to formally request an administrative hearing to appeal.
Note that these charges can potentially be reduced or eliminated with the help of a DUI defense lawyer.
How a Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help with Ohio DUS
Driving with a suspended license in Ohio puts you at risk for a variety of harsh penalties. Repeat offenses place you at an even greater risk for jail time and fines. For these reasons, talking to a criminal defense lawyer about your options is critical.
Because Ohio DUS penalties can be so harsh, your attorney may recommend appealing your suspension if possible. The process for appeal can be daunting, and unless you understand how this process works, you may lose your appeal. Having an attorney to represent you at your BMV hearing will give you the best chance of success.
Talk to a Lawyer for Help with Ohio Driving Under Suspension
If you face charges in Ohio for driving under suspension, contact a criminal or DUI defense lawyer as soon as possible. Your attorney can ensure you understand your options and help you make the best choice for your future.
In Ohio, Gounaris Abboud, LPA helps clients fight to regain and keep their driving privileges. With more than five decades of experience, we can assist you with even the most challenging of criminal matters, including DUS charges. Contact us today, or call us at 937-222-1515.