Driving While License Suspended
There are two types of DWLS, with knowledge and without knowledge. If you are charged with DWLS with knowledge it is a criminal traffic violation. If you are charged with DWLS without knowledge it is a civil traffic violation. Since Driving on a Suspended License with knowledge is a criminal infraction your appearance in court IS REQUIRED. Florida Statute 322.34 (2) provides, a person commits a misdemeanor of the second degree when they are convicted of driving while license suspended on the first offense. Your driving record will still be affected with a DWLS charge even if adjudication is withheld. The DHSMV will still count the offense as a major moving violation for purposes of Habitulalization.
Driving While License Suspended Without Knowledge is a civil infraction.Florida statute 322.34 (1) states that someone driving their vehicle without knowing that their license is suspended is guilty of a moving violation. Aside from being adjudicated guilty and having three points assessed on your license, a DWLS without knowledge citation can drastically affect the status of your license if you have at least two other major violations on your driving record.
In many cases our clients never received a notice of suspension from the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. Usually this happens because the letter was sent to the last known address on file and there is no confirmation that you received the letter.
Contact our office immediately if you are charged with this offense to discuss your options. There are many times we can have the charge amended to a lesser charge without the same devastating consequences to your driving record.