4 Ways to Lose a Driving Privilege in New York
by Seth Azria on 1/22/2010
Driving is considered a privilege and because we do not have a right to drive we should take care to protect that privilege. Suspensions related to traffic infractions may come from the DMV or be initiated by a court.
Court Initiated Suspensions
A court will direct the DMV to suspend a driving license if a driver:
- Fails to answer or appear for a ticket; or,
- Fails to pay a fine to the court
When the court reports a driver to the DMV, the DMV will send a notice to to the driver that their license will be suspended on a certain date if no corrective action is taken. Typically, the driver will have 30 days to take the corrective action. If they do not, the suspension will go into effect and the driver will have to pay $70 to lift the suspension. This suspension lift fee only lifts the suspension, the driver will still have to pay the fine or address the ticket.
DMV Initiated Suspensions
The DMV will suspend a driving license if a driver:
- Acquires 11 points or more on their license in an 18 month period; or,
- Acquires 3 speeding or misdemeanor convictions in an 18 month period, regardless of the point total.
If a driver has a DJ or MJ junior licence, the DMV will suspend a license for 60 days if the driver is convicted on any “serious traffic violation.” In general, a serious traffic violation is any that carries 3 or more points so all speeding tickets would be considered serious.
Driving on a suspended license is a misdemeanor crime in New York called Unlicenced Aggravated Operation. Misdemeanors are, by definition, punible by up to a year in jail.
It is sometimes possible to change your driving record by reopening old convictions and substituting a more serious conviction with a less serious one. The legal procedure to do this is called a motion coram nobis. If you have been suspended for excessive convictions, please call us at (315) 364-1155 to see if we can change your driving record.