Your Florida driver’s license can be suspended for a variety of reasons. Perhaps, you have accumulated many points on your record, skipped court on related or unrelated charges or failed to pay child support or other court fines. In other words, the court will typically have a valid reason to suspend your driver’s license.
Driving with a suspended license is a serious criminal offense in Florida. Depending on the nature of the suspension, you may face a range of legal consequences.
Knowingly driving with a suspended license is a misdemeanor
In Florida, a first and second arrest for willfully driving with a suspended license amounts to a misdemeanor criminal offense. If you are arrested, you will be taken through the criminal process (booking, arraignment, conviction and sentencing).
Penalties for first and second convictions for driving with a suspended license
If you are arrested for driving with a suspended license for the first time, you will be charged with a second-degree misdemeanor. For this, you may be fined up to $500 or 60-day imprisonment at the county jail.
A second conviction would lead to second-degree misdemeanor charges. For this, you may spend up to one year at the county jail. You may also be fined up to $1,000.
Penalties for third and subsequent convictions for driving with a suspended license
If you are arrested and charged with a third or subsequent driving while your license is suspended, you will face a third-degree felony charge. For this, the maximum penalties would be up to $5,000 in fines as well as 5-year imprisonment.
Driving is a privilege is Florida just as it is in the rest of the U.S. Knowing your legal options can help you protect your rights and defends yourself if you are charged with driving with a suspended license.