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What to Do When You Lose Your License

For most people, losing your driver’s license means losing your ability to work, pay your bills and get your life back on track after a DWI or other traffic charge.

That’s why it’s so important to speak with a DWI attorney as soon as possible if your driving privileges have been suspended or revoked, or if the Department of Revenue is attempting to take your license away.

Here are some things you need to know about protecting your license or getting it back.

How Can You Keep Your License After a Traffic Charge?

Suspension of your license by the Missouri Department of Revenue is a civil aspect of DWI law and may also be a consequence of other traffic charges.

There are several reasons why you must speak with an attorney as soon as possible if you have received a suspension notice:

  • You must request an administrative hearing within 15 days.
  • Attempting to handle the hearing by yourself could be very detrimental. You need the services of a qualified attorney in order to be fully prepared.
  • Your attorney will fight the license suspension proceedings and make every effort to save your driving privileges whenever possible.

If the arresting officer gives you a piece of paper from the DOR pertaining to the status of your license, keep it. Bring this and all other paperwork received during your arrest to your initial consultation with your attorney.

How Long Can Your License Be Suspended?

The duration of your suspended license depends on the charges against you and the number of alleged violations.

If you accumulate 8 or more points on your driving record within 18 months, your license may be suspended as follows:

  • 1st suspension: 30 days
  • 2nd suspension: 60 days
  • 3rd suspension: 90 days

The following charges could result in losing your driving privileges for a year or longer:

  • Speeding
  • Reckless or careless driving
  • Violating insurance laws
  • DWI
  • Refusing a blood alcohol test

How Do You Get Your License Reinstated?

The DOR has the following requirements for getting your driving privileges restored.

  • Pay a reinstatement fee. The amount varies based on number and type of violations.
  • For many violations, you will need to provide proof of liability insurance using form SR-22.
  • Drug or alcohol related offenses may require you to provide proof of Substance Abuse Traffic Offender Program (SATOP) completion.
  • Drug or alcohol offenses may also require installation of an Ignition Interlock Device on any vehicle you’re allowed to operate.
  • You may have to retake the state driver exam.

How Much Does It Cost to Get Your License Reinstated?

Reinstatement fees depend on the charges against you.

You will pay $20 to get your license back after moving violations, accident judgments, failure to file an accident report, failure to appear in court and failure to maintain a required Ignition Interlock Device.

The fee goes up to $45 for alcohol- or drug-related offenses, refusing to take a blood alcohol test and fuel theft.

The cost ranges from $20 to $400 for failure to maintain minimum insurance and is $150 for false insurance information.

How Do You Qualify for Limited Driving Privileges?

In some cases you can apply for Limited Driving Privileges (LDP), sometimes called a “hardship license,” which would let you drive to work, school and other trips deemed necessary.

You can apply for an LDP in one of two ways:

  • Submit an application. You’ll need to complete the Application for Limited Driving Privilege and provide proof of insurance and form SR-22. For drug or alcohol charges you’ll also need proof of an Ignition Interlock System. Your application will be reviewed within approximately 5 business days and you’ll be notified by postal mail of a decision.
  • File a petition with the circuit court in the county where you live and work. Along with paying a filing fee and court costs, you must provide proof of insurance and form SR-22. An Ignition Interlock Device.is required for alcohol and drug violations. If you receive a favorable ruling the court will issue an Order Granting Limited Driving Privilege.

You cannot get an LDP to drive a commercial motor vehicle such as a semi-truck or school bus.

Do you need to get your driver’s license back or stop the DOR from taking it away?Contact Eng & Woods right away to set up a free consultation. Our attorneys are here to fight for you and make sure your rights are protected.

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  • Columbia Office
    903 E. Ash Street
    Columbia, Missouri 65201
    Phone: 573-874-4190
    Fax: 573-874-4192
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