We recognize that the ability to drive legally is one of the most important aspects of any person’s life. For those that take the risk of driving while suspended regularly, life is fraught with the potential, every day, that their commute to work, the baby-sitters’ house, or to a birthday party will end instead with an arrest for driving while suspended.
Our attorneys are happy to consult with people whose licenses are suspended, in order to discuss exactly what it will take, and roughly how much it will cost, to get a person’s license valid again. We routinely consult on these matters for free and often provide a checklist of tasks that a person needs to do to get their license valid.
An uncertified copy of your Indiana driver’s license can be obtained for free at BMV. Reading and understanding the record, on the other hand, isn’t so easy. Your license can be suspended for any number of reasons, including:
- Unpaid tickets—if you were cited for a traffic infraction like speeding, driving while suspended, or running a stop light, and then you fail to respond to the summons on the matter, the Court will enter a default judgment against you. And until you pay the judgment, your license will remain suspended for the rest of your life.
- Excessive points—if you’ve been cited and adjudged in violation of traffic laws on repeated occasions and accumulated enough points over a short enough period of time, the BMV will suspend your license for a definite amount of time.
- Driving without insurance—If you are cited for any type of driving offense, the BMV will also require your insurance company to provide proof you are insured. If they don’t provide the proof, the BMV may suspend your license.
- Paying reinstatement fees—What’s more, the BMV can require uninsured drivers to pay reinstatement fees before their license is available for reinstatement. These fees can reach into the thousands of dollars. You may be able to get a waiver, depending on your financial situation. But, you’ll need advice on how and when to seek such a waiver.
- Criminal Code convictions—Some criminal convictions also carry mandatory or optional driver’s license suspensions. Once entered, these suspensions must be served, but you may be eligible for a specialized driving privilege.
- Habitual Traffic Violator Suspensions—Repeated infractions, criminal convictions, or a combination of both can result in the BMV designating you a habitual traffic violator. If they do, your license can be suspended for 5 or even 10 years. You may be eligible for specialized driving privileges in these situations as well, but you’ll likely need an attorney to help you through that process.
- Lifetime license forfeitures—Prior to 2014, convictions for driving while designated a habitual traffic violator would result in a lifetime forfeiture of the privilege of holding a driver’s license. Although Courts are no longer authorized to order lifetime forfeitures, all of the previously ordered lifetime forfeitures are still in effect. As a result, people who drive after a lifetime forfeiture may still be arrested, charged with a level 5 Felony, and potentially sentenced to 6 years in prison. But, an attorney can help eligible clients get a lifetime license forfeiture rescinded, allowing them to get a driver’s license again.
- SR-22 insurance failures—If the BMV has determined that you drove without insurance, they may require you to get SR-22 (pre-paid) insurance. If you miss a payment or cancel the insurance, your insurance company is required by law to notify the BMV, and the BMV immediately suspends your license again.
- Other miscellaneous matters—The BMV can, administratively, suspend your license for several other reasons. In those cases, however, you can still get specialized driving privileges, although you may want an attorney to help you with that process.
Some of our clients are surprised to find that getting their driver’s license back is not as difficult as they anticipated. You won’t know until you get a professional to sit down and look at your record. Call Rigney Law at 317.430.7370 to schedule an appointment today.