If your driver’s license is suspended and you receive a traffic ticket, your life has the potential to become significantly worse if you pay it during the period of suspension. Though you should not drive with a suspended license in the first place, life happens. You need to get to work, drive the kids to sports practices, get groceries, etc. Countless people have driven with a suspended license only to be ticketed for a traffic offense. Sadly, many have fallen into the trap of paying the ticket during the period of suspension. Your best course of action is to hand off this matter to a savvy traffic ticket attorney.
Why Paying a Traffic Ticket on a Suspended License is a bad Idea
If you pay a traffic ticket while your license is suspended, it is an admission that you violated the law by operating your vehicle without a valid license. In most cases, you are better off not paying the ticket at all. The penalty for skipping payment on such a ticket will pale in comparison to that for admitting you drove without a valid license. Though neither of these outcomes is enviable, the best approach is to make a decision with damage control in mind. Traffic court judges are more inclined to go easy on those who fail to pay a traffic ticket than those who admit they are guilty of driving with a suspended license.
The Penalty for Driving on a Suspended License
Louisiana drivers who drive during a period in which their license is suspended are guilty of a crime. The sentence for this crime usually hinges on the type of license the driver had as well as whether the driver has prior convictions for driving on a suspended/revoked license. Louisiana’s maximum sentence for drivers with a Class D or Class E license who drive during a period of suspension is six months in jail along with a fine up to but not in excess of $500. Louisiana drivers who had a class C, B or A license and are caught driving after license suspension will face upwards of six months in jail, a fine upwards of $5,000 and an additional civic penalty up to $2,500.
The circumstances of your unique case might also result in a minimum fine of $300, a minimum civic penalty of $1,250 and a jail stay of at least seven days. Making matters worse is that paying a traffic ticket while on a suspended license can result in that suspension being extended for an entire year. It is also possible the license will be completely revoked.
How to Proceed After Being Ticketed While Driving on a Suspended License
Though driving on a suspended license might not seem like an abhorrent crime, Louisiana’s punishments for this crime as detailed above are severe. Though paying a traffic ticket might seem like the right thing to do, you should think twice before forking over your hard-earned money after being ticketed while driving on a suspended license. It is better to let the ticket “hang” unpaid than face the consequences of driving on a suspended license as set forth above. The most important thing you can do after being ticketed while driving on a suspended license is reach out to a traffic ticket attorney.
Meet with our traffic ticket attorney and we will advise you of all your legal options. Oftentimes, the best course of action hinges on the details of your specific case and the frequency at which similar matters are handled in your local courthouse. Let us review your case in-depth to determine if it might be possible to plea-bargain the case to a reduced offense that does not trigger the consequences outlined above. It might even be possible to challenge the court’s logic in suspending your license in the first place.
Contact Our Law Firm Today
Do not make the common mistake of paying your traffic ticket on a suspended license. The bottom line is you are at the starting point of an incredibly complicated legal maze. Our traffic ticket legal team is here to guide you through this maze to an endpoint that preserves your freedom and your finances. Lean on our attorneys for assistance throughout this thorny legal quagmire and you stand that much better of a chance of emerging with a truly just result. Contact us now!