The ability to utilize public road systems in North Carolina makes life much simpler and convenient. However, most individuals do not realize how much of a privilege this is, until it is taken from them. Losing your license as a result of a suspension or revocation can certainly be a hassle. Without a license, commuting to work or extracurricular activities can be difficult, and an individual’s privileges can quickly become limited.
Fortunately, our Raleigh License Restoration Lawyers at Kirk, Kirk, Howell, Cutler & Thomas can assist you with reacquiring your license. Whether you need an experienced Raleigh lawyer to help defend you against a wrongful accusation which threatens your license privileges, or you simply need assistance with the process of reinstating your license, our team can help. With 60 years of experience in achieving exceptional legal outcomes, we can certainly assist you with this matter.
How Can Your Driver’s License Be Suspended in NC?
The North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has the ability to revoke your North Carolina driver’s license as the result of several different reasons. Some of these reasons include:
- Reckless driving
- DWI, or refusing to take a blood or breath test
- The accumulation of driver’s license points
If an individual’s license is suspended, they will immediately be notified in writing and the license suspension will be evident on their permanent record.
DWI Suspensions in North Carolina
Driving while intoxicated inevitably results in a mandatory driver’s license suspension. As soon as the court convicts you of a DWI and notifies the DMV of this conviction, the DMV will immediately suspend your license.
Along with this suspension, individuals’ license can also be immediately suspended once they are
stopped if either of the following occur:
- Refusing to take a blood or breath test. Results in 1-year revocation of your license.
- Having a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher, or a 0.04% or higher when driving a commercial vehicle. Results in a 30-day suspension of your license.
Driver’s License Points Suspension in NC
A fairly common cause of license suspension in North Carolina is the accumulation of driver’s license points. An individual obtains these points for violations and other infractions, and the amount of points varies depending on the circumstance. While there are steps you can take to reduce the number of points on your license, such as attending a Driver Improvement Clinic, when an individual accumulates 12 points or more in 3 years, or 8 points or more within 3 years following a license suspension, the DMV will suspend your license.
The amount of suspensions you’ve previously had determines the duration of the suspension:
- No prior suspensions: maximum of 60 days
- Second suspension: maximum of 6 months
- 3+ suspension: 1 year
How Long Can Your License Be Suspended?
A license suspension can last anywhere from 30 days to a lifetime. The exact length of time is determined by the severity of the action that caused the suspension.
A few of these actions and their subsequent suspension lengths include:
- First DWI offense | 1 year
- Second DWI offense | 2 years
- Third DWI offense | Permanent suspension
- Refusal of breath or blood test | 1 year
- Death by vehicle (misdemeanor) | 1 year
- Death by vehicle (felony) | Permanent suspension
- The acquirement of a driver’s license or permit using false information | 1 year
- Placing bets, watching, or loaning out a car for racing | 3 years
- Intentionally racing another vehicle | 3 years
- Speeding 15 MPH over the limit in a 55 MPH or more zone | 30 days
- Speeding 15 MPH over the limit in a 55 MPH or more zone (second offense) | 60 days
- Speeding 15 MPH over the limit in a 55 MPH zone while avoiding arrest | 1 year
- Driving with the absence of insurance | 30 days
In some cases, the duration of the license suspension lasts until an individual fulfills certain requirements. For example, if an individual’s license is suspended for failing to pay child support, their license cannot be reinstated until the money owed is paid.
Can I Fight the Decision for My License to Be Suspended?
Yes, you can fight the decision for your license to be revoked. Depending on the reason for which your license was suspended, you may be allowed the option to request an administrative hearing.
For example, an individual whose license were suspended as a result of death by vehicle will not be granted this option, while individuals who were accused of speeding may. This hearing gives you the opportunity to present evidence on why your license should remain instated. If the individual is unsatisfied with the hearing decision, they may appeal the decision to the NC Superior Court within 30 days following the trial.
Navigating through the administrative rules implemented by the DMV can be difficult, which is why having an experienced attorney to help you understand these rules and present a solid defense is your best option.
Whether action is taken via courts or via the DMV administrative hearing, we can provide assistance throughout the entire process of having your driver’s license restored by crafting a detailed, and effective plan of action.
How Do I Get My Driver’s License Reinstated
Ultimately, in order to have your license reinstated, an individual can either appeal their suspension or begin the reinstatement process when the length of their suspension is over.
If an individual successfully wins their appeal from the administrative hearing, their license will be reinstated. This involves requesting an administrative hearing, being granted this opportunity, and successfully winning your appeal.
Requesting a DMV Hearing
To request this hearing, an individual must discuss their eligibility by contacting the central DMV office in Raleigh. Once your request is granted, contacting an attorney is the next step, as they can assist you in understanding the multiple laws and regulations involved and preparing a solid defense.
If you are not granted this option, you must wait until your suspension period is over to begin the reinstatement process.
Once this set time frame has elapsed, you must:
- Visit a North Carolina DMV office
- Pay all restoration and service fees
- Apply for a new NC driver’s license, which may involve a written and/or driving test depending on your suspension requirements
For more severe actions that led to your license suspension, you may have to take additional steps before your license can be reinstated, such as paying court fees and fines, or presenting paperwork from a court or agency that proves you are eligible for reinstatement.
The restoration and service fees that must be paid in order to restore your driving privileges include:
- Restoration of driver’s license: $65
- Restoration following a DWI conviction: $130
- Service fee: $50
For Assistance with Reinstating Your License, Contact Our Experienced Attorneys Today!
Maintaining your driving privileges is important, especially for obligations like work or school. That is why it is important to reach out to an experienced team of Raleigh attorneys to assist you in navigating through the process of reinstating your license or building an effective case for your hearing. Our legal team, with years of experience, have helped numerous clients restore their license privileges and they are equipped with the tools to assist you as well.