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Why is my license suspended in Maryland?

clients asking for legal advice on suspended license

Driving on a suspended license is a serious traffic charge that can carry jail time. There are many different reasons why your license can be suspended. Although the charge sounds simple, it usually requires navigating both the criminal justice system and the Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA). We can help you navigate both of these systems to achieve the best possible outcome- which you usually involves addressing the reason for the suspension as well as the accusation of driving on suspended. 

One of the most common reasons your license is suspended is outstanding tickets for less serious traffic citations. When you are pulled over for a traffic violation that does not require you to appear in court, such as speeding, you have a certain amount of time after the traffic stop to either (1) pay the requested fine amount or (2) request a hearing to address the matter with a Maryland District Court judge and the officer who pulled you over. However, if you do not do either of these things, the MVA will suspend your license until the ticket is resolved. We can help you determine the best way to resolve those outstanding tickets with the MVA so that your license is no longer suspended, which in turn helps if you have also been charged with driving on a suspended license.

Some other common reasons that your license can be suspended are failure to pay child support, not attending a driver improvement program when you are ordered to do so, or failing to pay a fine that a court has imposed. Like suspensions for neglected traffic tickets, the underlying issue must be cleared up before you are able to drive again. While sometimes solving the underlying problem may be simple, these issues, such as communication between the Child Support Administration and the MVA, can involve frustrating bureaucracy. We are experienced in navigating the red tape to discover exactly what needs to happen to get you back on the road.

There are other license suspensions that require time instead of money to clear. These include suspensions for alcohol-related offenses, accumulating too many points on your license, or administrative suspensions under Maryland’s graduated license program. With all of these, the MVA tells you that your privilege to drive will be suspended for a certain amount of time. However, it is not always that cut and dry, especially if you have someone in your corner advocating for you at the MVA. You can get exemptions to drive to work, or an administrative judge can stack multiple suspensions to make the overall time shorter. Regardless, we can help you navigate an MVA hearing so that these suspensions impact your life as little as possible.

You can be suspended for more than one reason, and different types of suspensions have different ways they can be resolved. When there are multiple suspensions involved, clearing them all up can be complicated. Even knowing which suspensions are still active and which have run out can be tough to untangle. Knowing how to read your driving record is essential to finding out why your license is suspended and how to get valid again. We are experienced at deciphering driving records and determining what the best course of action is to clear up your license.

If you do end up getting charged with driving on a suspended license, there are several different defenses that may apply to your case and that we can help you identify. The MVA must follow certain rules and procedures in order to suspend you, and sometimes they fail to follow these procedures. One of those procedures is that you must be notified that your privilege to drive is suspended, and the notification requirements are different for the different types of suspensions. We are very familiar with the lengthy and convoluted Maryland Transportation Article, and we can identify whether the MVA followed the proper notification procedures. There are also times when the MVA suspends your license when they should not have. For instance, they may have miscalculated the amount of points you have at a certain time- a calculation that is not as simple as it may seem. They may have also failed to clear the suspension after you paid a ticket or fine, causing an officer to wrongly charge you because of an erroneous notation in the system. These are just some examples, but even if there is not a readily available defense, we have experience in negotiating with prosecutors and appealing to judges to get the best possible result for you.

No matter what the reason for your license suspension and related charges, at Jeremy Widder Law we have the experience both in front of Maryland District Court judges and administrative judges at the MVA to help.


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