What You Can Do if the California DMV Has Suspended Your License


While the exploits and troubles of singer Bobby Brown have been well documented, his brother Tommy (who has appeared on the reality shows “Being Bobby Brown” and “The Houstons: On Our Own,” about his famous sibling and late sister-in-law Whitney Houston) has had his own recent brush with the law. In March 2013, Tommy Brown was arrested for driving with a suspended license after making an improper pass in McDonough, Georgia.

Brown may not have been aware that his license was suspended – a simple failure to appear in court or failure to make payment towards a minor traffic violation can cause that to happen (which is quite possible if you have moved but failed to provide the Department of Motor Vehicles with your new residence). Anyone who has had a license suspension knows the exceptional inconvenience it causes, so when it happens you should know your options:

  • Investigate if a permit to drive or restricted license is available – DUI, for example, can be issued a license that allows travel to and from a place of employment.
  • Contact the DMV with your reinstatement questions – You may learn that the process is as simple as paying off an outstanding traffic fine in collections or appearing in court to clear up a failure to apppear and arrange for payment of a traffic fine.  License suspensions due to a DUI conviction or DMV administrative suspension such as a Negligent Operator, Lack of Skill, or Medical Operator could be more complicated to resolve without the assistance of an experienced DMV attorney.
  • Follow all the rules on your suspension – Of course this is difficult in most of California, a state built for vehicular travel. But if you can telecommute to your job, or learn to either ride-share or use public transportation, a suspension of a driver’s license can be managed. For example, a DUI suspension, except in cases of chemical test refusal, allows for eligibility for a restricted driving privilege to commence after completing a period of mandatory suspension. The length of this period depends on how many prior convictions a person has. In addition, eligibility can be forfeited if a person is found to be in violation of the suspension.

Topics:  Driver's License Suspensions

Published In: Criminal Law Updates

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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