Having your driver’s license suspended in Virginia can make your life very difficult. With the lack of good public transportation in many cities and towns in our state, driving is essential to get to work, school, visits with family and friends, and much more.
Once the time period for your driver’s license to be suspended is over, you will be anxious to get your driver’s license back. Here are the steps you will need to take before you can start driving again.
Why Your Driver’s License Can Be Suspended in Virginia
A driver’s license can be suspended for many reasons in our commonwealth. However, a new law that went into effect in July 2019 prohibits drivers license suspensions for failure to pay court costs and requires licenses suspended for this reason to be reinstated. Here are some reasons that a driver’s license can still be suspended:
- Failing to have required auto insurance
- Not taking a driver improvement course if required to do so
- Owing back child support
- Not paying a civil judgement in a car accident case
- Being convicted of reckless driving
- Driving when drunk or drugged (DUI)
- Fleeing the scene of an accident—known as a hit and run accident
- Accumulating too many points on a driving record due to traffic violations
How to Get Your Suspended Driver’s License Restored
Unfortunately, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will not automatically restore your driving privileges when its suspension period ends. You will need to take a number of steps to get your license back.
Get Your Compliance Summary
The first step you will need to take is to obtain your compliance summary from the DMV. This document will tell you the requirements you must meet to get your driver’s license back. Here are the ways that you can obtain this document:
- Order it on the DMV’s website—the fastest and easiest way to get it
- Go to a DMV office
- Call the DMV
After you receive your compliance summary, you will need to complete any outstanding requirements.
Pay Unpaid Court Costs
While you do not have to pay court costs to get your license because of the new 2019 law, it is still a good idea to either pay your court costs or make a payment arrangement with the court. You will begin to owe interest after 40 days, which can significantly increase the amount you will have to pay. If the court costs must be paid to a District Court, which is often the case, you can pay them online.
Determine If You Can Get a Restricted License
Depending on the reason for your driver’s license suspension, you may be able to obtain a restricted license to go to work, school, and the doctor if you do not qualify for full driving privileges. A DUI, reckless driving, or aggressive driving conviction are a few of the offenses that may be eligible for a restricted license.
Other Requirements for Getting Your Driver’s License Back
You will need to purchase motor vehicle insurance and provide the DMV with proof of insurance. Your other option is to pay a $500 uninsured motorist fee, but you would have no insurance protection if you caused an auto accident. The other requirements you must fulfill will depend on why your driver’s license was suspended but can include:
- Provide proof that you complied with any court orders
- Provide verification that you completed a driver’s improvement course
- Provide documentation requested by the DMV, such as proof of residency, birth certificate, U.S. passport, or permanent resident card
- Provide the DMV with a medical or vision report from a physician
- Comply with child support orders
- Provide proof that a civil judgment has been paid or discharged in bankruptcy
- Take a required written or driving test
Pay the Reinstatement Fee
You must pay a reinstatement fee before you can get your driver’s license back. The cost currently ranges from between $40 and $220, and the fee you will owe will depend on why your license was suspended.
Has your driver’s license been suspended in Virginia? Our knowledgeable driver license suspension lawyers in Manassas can answer your questions and help you take the necessary steps to obtain a restricted license or to get your driver’s license restored. Take advantage of our offer of a free consultation to learn more. Call our office or start a live chat to schedule your appointment.