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Driving With A Suspended License

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Driving With A Suspended License

by | Jan 6, 2020 | Florida Laws


The laws in the state of Florida are pretty strict and clear about driving offenses. Often, the severity of penalties depends on the type of offense. For instance, you’ll probably just get a speeding ticket in South Florida if you do a 65 in a 45 mph zone.

But if you’re caught driving while your license is suspended, your penalty will be much worse. The state of Florida is particular about keeping its citizens safe while they’re on the road.

And people whose licenses have been suspended are usually considered a hazard to other road users. It’s why their licenses are taken away in the first place.

In fact, driving while your license is suspended can be considered a felony in Florida –depending on whether you’re a first offender or repeat offender. For first offenders, the case is usually charged as a misdemeanor.

But, if you have a history of having your license suspended or being a traffic offender, the courts could charge you with a felony in Broward County. Of course, the charge will be dependent on the reason your license was suspended in the first place.

For example, if your license was suspended because of a DUI, and you assaulted an officer during the process of getting arrested, the courts are more likely to charge your Driving While License Suspended offense as a felony, even if you committed no traffic offense.

What About First-Time Offenders?

In Broward County, first offenders are usually charged depending on their knowledge or ignorance of their license’s suspension. So, if a driver didn’t even know his license had been suspended, he’d only get charged with a noncriminal traffic infraction. The penalty for this is usually a fine or forfeiture.

If the driver knew about the suspension, he’d be charged with a second-degree misdemeanor. If he’s caught driving again after the first conviction, his charges will be ramped up to a first-degree misdemeanor.

As usual, the punishment for this can be fines, forfeiture, points on the license, attending DUI/DWI school, and civil penalties the court thinks best.

Penalty for Multiple and Repeat Offenders

If you choose to continue driving while your license is suspended in South Florida, you will have to spend at least 10 days in jail or a correctional institution. However, if you’re charged with a third-degree felony, you’ll get a pretty severe sentence. Instances in which you can be charged with a felony of the third degree include:

  • License suspension due to DUI
  • Refusing tests
  • Trying to flee from the law enforcement agents
  • Evidence of physical injury or bodily harm caused to others while you were driving

If guilty of one or more of these, you’ll be charged according to the Florida Criminal Punishment Code. Penalties include:

  • Vehicle impound by the arresting officer
  • $5,000 in fines
  • Prison sentence of up to 5 years

Can You Contest it in Court?

It depends on the circumstances. But a seasoned lawyer might be able to help. Contact Florida Ticket Firm today to get help with your speeding tickets and DWLS issues.