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WA state criminal defense, can city or state suspend license for unpaid traffic tickets

Longview, WA |

can your driver license be suspended for unpaid traffic tickets?

i understood that washington passed some legislation around 1995 that tickets prior to that would not subject you to a suspension does anyone know anything about this. my license was suspended for a month and then i got a notice telling me it was no longer suspended due to this legislation. i have a ticket that is 6 years old and just recently my license was suspended for this ticket, was this legislation overturned?

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Attorney answers 2


Yes. The WA Department of Licensing (DOL) routinely suspends drivers for unpaid traffic tickets. You must not ignore the tickets when you receive them or when they hit your record.


Yes. If this has already happened to you, it isn't terribly difficult to get your license back unless you have been found to be a Habitual Traffic Offender. A habitual traffic offender is a driver who, within a 5-year period, has been either (1)convicted of 3 or more offenses listed in RCW 46.65.020(1). OR (2) found to have committed or convicted of 20 or more of the moving violations listed in WAC 308-104-160.

Go to the Department of licensing and find out exactly who has a hold on your license. Then go to that agency and either pay off the tickets or make an agreement with them for a payment plan with their agreement that they will release the hold. Then go back to the Department of Licensing, pay your reinstatement fee, and get your license back.

If you are unable to pay off your tickets or make a payment plan, or if the situation with your license is a bit more serious than it appears from your question, then look into whether or not you are eligible to whether or not you qualify for a restricted license. If you do get that, you will at least be able to drive to work, school, etc. Good Luck.

David C. Beyersdorf
2110 North Winery Avenue, Suite #101
Fresno, CA 93703
(559) 252-7000

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