In the state of Arizona, a driver’s license may be suspended for any of the following reasons:
- Alcohol-related offenses
- Points accumulation
- Failing to appear in court for a speeding ticket or other traffic violation
- Causing a serious accident or fatality using a motor vehicle
- Driving recklessly or racing on the highways
- Driving under the influence of an intoxicant
- Leaving the scene of an accident involving injury or death
- Making a false statement to the DMV while under oath
- Having two or more convictions for racing on highways, reckless driving or DUI
Driving while a license is suspended or revoked is considered a crime in Arizona and other states. According to the Arizona Revised Statutes, “Driving on a Suspended License” is defined under ARS §28-3473 and is described as “knowingly operating a motor vehicle while your license is suspended, revoked, cancelled, disqualified, or refused.” Anyone caught driving a motor vehicle on a suspended license in Phoenix, Arizona, will need to get legal effective representation so their rights are protected and they can have the charges reduced or removed.
Possible punishments for driving on a suspended license
Driving a motor vehicle on a suspended license is considered a Class 1 misdemeanor. Although there is no mandatory fine or jail time for the offense, the offender may receive probation or up to 6 months in jail.
An offender with prior convictions for driving on a suspended license in Arizona will have to face mandatory jail time. Repeat offenses carry the following penalties in the state of Arizona:
- For a second offense, the prosecutor will normally seek 5 days in jail
- For a third offense, the prosecutor will seek 30 days in jail
- For a fourth driving on a suspended license offense in Arizona, the prosecutor will seek 90 days in jail
- A fifth or subsequent offense carries a possible punishment of 6 months in jail
Moreover, anyone cited for driving on a revoked or suspended license will have their vehicle impounded for up to 30 days.
Defending a Driving on a Suspended License Charge
A number of possible defenses can be used to defend a charge of Driving on a Suspended, Cancelled or Revoked license in Arizona. The most common one used is that the driver did not ‘knowingly’ drive on a suspended license. In such cases, the State has the burden of proving that you were notified that your license had been suspended. The prosecutor will try to prove that you “should have known” that your license was suspended. Therefore, to avoid any issues, it is advised to inform the Motor Vehicle Department regarding any change in address within 10 days of moving.
A number of other possible defenses can also be used such as challenging the validity of any search warrant or whether there were any “forensic flaws” during the investigation. Whatever your case, it is important to get in touch with a criminal defense attorney who can help reduce the charges you are facing. If you are facing a “Driving on a Suspended License” charge in Arizona, you can contact the Law Offices of Brian D. Sloan at 480-900-0384 or 602-900-0384 for a Free Initial Consultation and discuss your case.