What Is a Habitual Traffic Offender?
In Florida as in many other states, one common crime to be charged with is that of a habitual traffic offender. Consequences can be associated with being classified as a habitual traffic offender and this should prompt you to contact a criminal defense attorney immediately. A habitual traffic offender in Florida can benefit from the advice provided by a dedicated criminal law attorney.
If you’re not sure where to start or what comes next in the management of your case, please set up a time to talk with a criminal lawyer in Florida about the specifics of your case.
What is a Habitual Traffic Offender?
Because of the consequences associated with being a habitual traffic offender, only certain circumstances allow the state to define a person under this definition. Per Florida Statute 322.64 a habitual traffic offender is any driver who has hit at least three of the following convictions in the same five year period:
- 15 convictions from moving traffic offenses for which points could be assessed.
- Any felony where a motor vehicle was used to commit the crime.
- Driving while license was suspended.
- Voluntary or involuntary manslaughter associated with the operation of a vehicle.
- Failing to stop and render aid during a motor vehicle crash or accident resulting in death or serious bodily injury of another.
- Out of state traffic violations.
If you are arrested for driving while your license is suspended for being a habitual traffic offender, this could be classified in Florida as a felony of the third degree and carries substantial penalties. This can be punished with up to 5 years in prison through Florida Criminal Statute 322.34 which is why it is so important to communicate with a suspended license attorney immediately.
Consequences of Being a Habitual Traffic Offender in Florida
Any driver who obtains three convictions for any of the above mentioned offenses within a 5 years period will face the following consequences.
- Up to 5 years of prison time.
- Fines of up to $5,000.
- Fines and prison time.
- Loss of your Florida driver's license for 5 years.
- Felony of the third degree charging if you have already been named as a habitual traffic offender and were caught driving.
Speaking with our defense attorney will give you next steps following a suspended license.
Hardship License for Habitual Traffic Offenders
Engaging a criminal defense attorney in Florida for support with a habitual traffic offender classification is important because you may be able to benefit from a hardship license. This is a restricted license issued by Florida after your driver's license has been revoked.
You can only apply for it after one year has passed following your license revocation and classification as a habitual traffic offender. You will need to complete the advanced driver improvement school and attend DUI classes if you were arrested and convicted for DUIs in the past.
How an Attorney Can Help Habitual Traffic Offenders
The consequences of being classified as a habitual traffic offender can stack up quickly. Your attorney can step into the case right away to find a way to reduce your habitual traffic offender charge or have the charges dropped. This can include filing a petition on your behalf and requesting a hardship license after you have finished advanced driver improvement school.
After a two year period you can file a motion to vacate or set aside a conviction or previous judgement court order. After receiving a notice of a habitual traffic offender distinction in Florida, you only have 30 days to legally challenge it. You cannot afford to wait during this time or handle the case on your own. An attorney can help you mount a defense immediately.
Contact Criminal Defense Attorney Thomas C. Grajeck Today
Thomas C. Grajeck has many years of experience in helping people who have already been named as habitual traffic offenders. Use our online form or call the phone number to get an attorney to advocate for your rights immediately.
PRO TIP :
“A 5-year Habitual Traffic Offender status could also mean increases for your car insurance premiums.”
FAQs on Consequences of Being a Habitual Traffic Offender
How do I restore my driver's license after getting a habitual traffic offender status?
You will need to follow the protocol established by the court and likely complete the advanced driver school before requesting a hardship license. You will also want to speak with your criminal defense attorney in Florida about other options to have the charges dropped so that you can ideally avoid having your driver's license revoked to the first place.
Can a habitual traffic offender suspension be undone?
Only in extenuating circumstances can a habitual traffic offender suspension be undone. You will want to call your attorney immediately after being categorized in this way so that you can mount a defense and fight back if you have been wrongly accused.
What happens if I continue driving anyway even after getting a habitual traffic offender suspension?
You could be facing much more serious issues for driving while your license was suspended and already being classified as a habitual traffic offender. The state of Florida can elevate these charges to the felony level, leaving you to deal with much more serious consequences and all of the problems associated with the felony conviction, such as a record that follows you for many years. Sit down with a criminal defense attorney right away to discuss your options.