Drawbacks to Getting Your License Suspended

Losing your license is more than an inconvenience. Being unable to drive legally can make it impossible to keep a job or meet all your personal and family obligations.

Unfortunately, Ohio courts and statutes recognize more than 30 reasons to suspend a driver’s license. The punishment can apply to everything from leaving the scene of an accident, letting your auto insurance policy expire, failing to pay child support, getting convicted of operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OVI), which is what state officials call driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and much more. AVOID AN OVI CONVICTION ON YOUR RECORD

The drawbacks to getting your license suspended fall into four broad categories:

 

Limited to No Driving Privileges

Depending on many different factors ranging from the charge and defendant’s history to the quality of the defense or plea deal, an Ohio driver’s license suspension may be partial or total. A partial suspension grants the driver restricted driving privileges, which are usually limited to trips to and from work, medical appointments, and court dates or meetings with a lawyer.

A total suspension usually precedes the reinstatement of restricted driving privileges. For an OVI conviction, the period of total suspension can last anywhere from 15 days to more than a year. While under total or “hard” suspension, a driver is not allowed to drive at all without risking rearrest, jail time, and a new or lengthier suspension. Violating the restrictions on when and where you can drive with a partially suspended license also risks those new and enhanced penalties.

Surrendering your CDL

Suspensions related to criminal charges or convictions usually apply to both your own driver’s license and any commercial driving licenses you hold. This is always true for drunk or drugged driving suspensions.

Under Ohio law, getting a CDL suspended means you cannot legally drive a commercial vehicle until the term of suspension expires and the CDL is fully reinstated. In other words, getting a CDL suspended often means losing a job that requires driving a truck, bus, or taxi. The lesson? Hiring an experienced Columbus, OH, DUI attorney to fight an OVI charge is a must if you drive for a living.

 

Increased Risk for Future Suspensions

Suffering through one Ohio driver’s license suspension greatly increases your chances for losing your license again. This is especially true if the suspension comes as part of a sentence for driving under the influence.

Not only do periods of total suspension tend to last longer for people under penalty for driving while drunk or stoned, mandated penalties for second and subsequent OVI convictions include automatic suspensions. The longer a total suspension remains in effect, the more likely you will be to have an absolute need to drive somewhere to respond to an emergency. A dedicated Columbus OVI license suspension can negotiate with prosecutors to minimize the harshest sanctions.

 

Reinstatement Hassles and Expenses

Once a suspension expires, you must jump through several hoops and pay fees to get your license reinstated. You must present the Bureau of Motor Vehicles proof that you have completed your sentence or paid off the debts that cost you your license. If you went through a lack of insurance suspension, you will also need to present a certificate of insurability called an SR-22. On top of that, the BMV will demand a special reinstatement fee and may require you take portions of the CDL test.

Then, when you get your license back, it will carry whatever points your offense merits. For instance, an OVI conviction brings a six-point penalty. Rack up 12 points on a reinstated license, and it will get suspended again.

Hiring an experienced Columbus DUI attorney to fight an OVI charge is a must if you drive for a living.

Offenses That Can Be Expunged in Ohio

Expunging a criminal record in Ohio means placing it off limits to the public. Law enforcement and court officials can gain access to some expunged records under certain circumstances, but the information will not be available to employers, banks, apartment owners, and others conducting background checks for work-related, financial, or contractual reasons.

Most types offenses can be expunged provided the person convicted on the charge has fully completed and satisfied all the terms of his or her sentence. The only two types of criminal convictions that cannot be expunged are those involving violence and those related to driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Also, traffic violations are generally exempt from expungement because actions like speeding and failure to yield are not considered crimes in and of themselves under Ohio law. WHAT CHARGES CAN BE EXPUNGED FROM MY RECORD IN OHIO? 

Current laws in Ohio allow individuals to petition for the expungement of one nonviolent felony, two nonviolent misdemeanors, or one felony and one misdemeanor. Nonviolent criminal offenses include larceny/theft, fraud, white collar crimes, drug possession, drug trafficking, solicitation/importuning, and burglary. Listing each criminal offense that falls into the nonviolent category would be impossible without reproducing much of the Ohio Revised Code. A simpler way to understand if you may have a chance of getting your criminal record expunged is to ask yourself if you were convicted of one of the following DUI-related or violent crimes:

  • Assault, including sexual assault
  • Domestic violence
  • Homicide
  • Kidnapping/false imprisonment
  • Murder
  • Operating a vehicle while intoxicated
  • Physical control (e.g., intoxicated while in the driver’s seat of a parked car)
  • Robbery

If you can answer no, then you may be eligible for expungement. The other minimum criteria that must be met in order to have your Ohio criminal record expunged are

 

  • Release from jail
  • Finished parole
  • Paid all restitution
  • Waited at least one year after completing all terms of your sentence
  • Failed the correct forms with the appropriate court
  • Paid the expungement petition filing fee

Consulting with an experienced expungement lawyer in Columbus, Ohio, before starting to apply for having your criminal record sealed is strongly recommended. Filing an incomplete application form or directing it to the wrong jurisdiction can result in an automatic denial. And you may be given a second chance to petition for expungement.

A knowledgeable Columbus expungement attorney will also be able to provide advice on what information to include with the expungement petition to convince the prosecutor and judge who review the application that you have paid your debt to society in full, kept your post-conviction record clean, and earned the opportunity to leave your past behind you as you apply for new jobs, loans, and educational opportunities.

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Why You Should Always Appeal Criminal Charges

Appealing a criminal charge has two components. The first involves requesting a trial instead of pleading guilty. The second involves asking a higher court to consider mistakes or injustices that led to a conviction. Explaining everything that happens while contesting an initial charge and pursuing appeals would take a library full of books. Here, the Columbus Ohio criminal defense attorneys will just highlight the most important reasons why you should always consider asking for your day in court and why you may have grounds for appealing a conviction. Read more

Find top rated attorneys and law firms profiles with Find Attorneys Directory, the best and free online attorney directory. Guest bloggers can also publish their articles here as other bloggers are doing.

What Charges Can Be Expunged From My Record in Ohio?

The best way to start answering a question about which criminal charges you can have removed from your record in Ohio is probably to list the offenses that would remain publically searchable for your entire life. Per Section 2953.36 of the Ohio Revised Code, convictions for the following crimes cannot be expunged: Read more

Find top rated attorneys and law firms profiles with Find Attorneys Directory, the best and free online attorney directory. Guest bloggers can also publish their articles here as other bloggers are doing.