Dan Murphy
By: Dan Murphy

There are times when you must drive out of necessity and know that your Denver driver’s license is suspended, but there are also times when you are not even aware that it is. Whether you know that your license has been suspended or not, you still can be arrested and charged with criminal driving on a suspended license. This can be a harrowing event and can carry severe consequences, but a criminal defense law firm can help.

In Colorado, driving with a suspended license is known as “driving under restraint.” If you are aware that your license has been suspended and you have been stopped before, then your consequences increase in severity.

For example, a first conviction of driving under restraint in Colorado can get you up to $500 in fines and up to a year in jail. A second conviction, however, can get you up to $3,000 in fines and a mandatory year in jail. The penalty can be as high as up to two years of jail time. So, this charge cannot, and should not, be taken lightly.

If you do not know your Colorado license is suspended, make sure you make the authorities know that fact. With a good Denver or Colorado criminal defense attorney, not knowing your license is suspended can be an actual defense in court. This, of course, depends on how it is presented and handled.

If you are driving with a suspended license, it can also lead to revocation of your driving privileges for a limited time or complete revocation. Don’t let this happen, as you know that it is almost impossible today to survive without driving. You can lose your job, your financial stability, and more. Consult with an aggressive criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. He or she can help you fight for your right to drive or possibly have the penalties mitigated or even dropped.

What Are Some of the Main Reasons My License Can Be Suspended or Revoked in Colorado?

There are varied reasons for your Colorado license to be suspended, or even revoked. Remember that suspension is temporary, but revocation can be non-reversible. At the least, after the dictated revocation period, you would have to apply for a new license, altogether.

Some of the more common reasons you can have your license suspended or revoked are:

  • Alcohol or Drug-Related Offenses: These offenses include driving under the influence (DUI) or even failing to submit to a blood-alcohol test at the scene. This would be a violation of Colorado’s implied consent law.
  • Points-Based Suspensions: Like many states, Colorado uses a points-based system attached to traffic (or driving) violations. Speeding, reckless driving, and other infractions of the driving laws each carry an exact number of points. Usually getting 12 points in one year, or 18 points in two years, will carry a penalty of suspension. For drivers under 21 years of age, this point system is even lower, so penalties can be inflicted sooner.
  • Driving Without Liability Insurance: If you are caught driving without liability insurance, the Department of Revenue can suspend your license. For a first offense, the suspension may be in force until you show you have liability insurance. For a third offense or more, your license can be suspended for up to a mandatory eight months.
  • Child Support Suspensions: You should realize that paying child support, although unrelated to driving, can still be used to suspend your license. You most likely will have to prove you are following the terms of your child support agreement to get the suspension lifted.
  • Criminal Convictions: There are certain criminal convictions that almost automatically result in the suspension of your license. To name a few:
    • Vehicular homicide or assault
    • Failing to stop or fleeing the scene of an accident involving a death or injury
    • Perjuring yourself (by making a false statement) as to the ownership of the vehicle or your permitted use of the vehicle. There are other charges also, which your criminal defense attorney can explain.

You may have thought that being pulled over in Colorado with a suspended license was no serious legal matter; you would be wrong. The loss of your driving privileges can negatively affect your life, your job, and your ability to provide for your family.

Considering serious fines and even jail time are possible, consulting (or retaining) a Denver driving under suspension lawyer is a must. Your attorney can help you from the onset of the legal process and almost always improve the outcome.

How Can I Get My License Reinstated in Colorado?

The length of suspension of your driving rights will usually depend on the reason for the suspension. This time can be up to, or more, than one year. A revocation can be many years­ or forever.

There are some ways, however, that your experienced driving under suspension lawyer can help your get around the suspension.

Some examples are:

  • To get to school or get your siblings to school
  • To maintain employment
  • To attend alcohol or drug treatment meetings, etc.
  • To obtain emergence health care
  • To complete various other necessary tasks

These exceptions would be monitored, and cannot be violated but can help you live a more normal life during this difficult time.

Once your license suspension (or revocation) period has ended, you then must reinstate your license before you are permitted to drive again. There is a fee of approximately $95 but could also include other costs and fees. There may be other considerations, such as attending drug or alcohol treatments, etc.

Your Denver, Colorado criminal lawyer can be of invaluable help during and throughout this entire ordeal. Don’t suffer the loss of your driving privileges without the advice and guidance that you need. Your income, overall standard of living, and more may be affected.

Dan Murphy
By: Dan Murphy

Denver criminal defense lawyer Daniel M. Murphy provides clients in the Denver area with aggressive and sympathetic legal representation. He graduated from the University of Denver Law School in 1994 and worked as a public defender before starting his own practice in 1996. He has defended clients accused of the most difficult criminal and alcohol-related charges. He also serves as a Moot Court Judge for Denver-area law students who rely on his mentorship.