I was initially pulled over for a brake light that was not out in Hermosa Beach while leaving work to drop off my manager at 4:30am...
Personal Injury Lawyer
This charge is a misdemeanor, so you'll be appearing the arraignment. There, you'll have the opportunity to plead guilty or not guilty. I suggest you hire an attorney. If you can't afford one, you'll have to request a public defender at the arraignment. You're attorney may be able to get the charged dismissed or reduced to an infraction.
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Criminal Defense Attorney
An attorney will be able to look at the DMV proof of notice paperwork to see if you had proper notice and knowledge of the suspension. As the other attorneys stated, these matters are commonly reduced to infractions or a lesser charge, but there are many facts that affect that possibility. Consult with an attorney before you go to court to determine your options.