NC DMV Hearings
Public transportation in Charlotte is pretty good, as long as you live (and work) near the light rail and don’t mind waiting for the train. Lyft and UBER are also super convenient for quick, local trips or nights out on the town.
As a practical matter, it really helps to have a valid NC driver’s license if you live anywhere near Mecklenburg County. That’s even more true if you live in a surrounding town like Monroe, Gastonia, or Mooresville and work in Charlotte.
It also can be a bit embarrassing, and expensive, to roll into work on UBER every day. Even the most green-friendly types don’t look forward to cycling to work when it’s raining and Charlotte still can get pretty cold in the winter.
Put simply, a valid license is a valuable thing. That’s why you should protect it.
Chances are, if you’re looking online about whether you should hire a lawyer for a NC DMV hearing, you:
- Realize how important a driver license is for daily life and work in the Charlotte metro region; and,
- Now have an inkling about how complicated and how hard it can be to get through the DMV restoration process.
Many people don’t realize, at least not right away, there can be more than one legal system at work when your license is revoked or suspended.
Indeed, there are technical differences between a revocation and a license suspension in North Carolina.
Those differences are, in part, related to the type of criminal charges, traffic ticket or number of traffic tickets, and possibly even a conviction for “drunk driving.”
BTW, it’s called DWI in North Carolina and DUI in South Carolina. And you don’t have to be “drunk” to be convicted of either.
The first system is our criminal courts in North Carolina, which handle tickets, “citations,” criminal charges, and DWI cases.
The second involves “civil” or “administrative” revocations and suspensions enforced by the North Carolina Department of Transportation / Division of Motor Vehicles a.k.a. NC DMV.
Some really serious tickets and criminal charges like DWI in NC, may result in a suspension by the judge as a part of the sentence. Obviously, that means you either pleaded guilty or were convicted.
Not all tickets end in a revocation or suspension. Minor infractions, with nothing else and no prior history, may only result in a fine or costs of court.
On the other hand, multiple convictions over a set period of time (including certain infractions) may end with you receiving in snail-mail a Notice of Revocation or Suspension from DMV in NC.
That assumes your address is correct on your license and you receive that letter from DMV. They still can revoke or suspend, even if you never see the Notice of Suspension.
Certain tickets, despite a perfect record up to that point, can result in a revocation or suspension due to the gravity of the offense. Gulp.
It can get confusing. Attorneys with substantial experience handling both criminal charges and DMV restoration hearings are careful about how they approach the license restoration process.
In fact, because of the complexities associated with license issues, it’s really crucial we understand the history of charges, the status of DMV hearings, and eligibility for reinstatement.
Under the NC traffic laws, DMV possesses tremendous power (and discretion) in suspending, revoking, and reinstating a driver license, even if the Judge doesn’t take your license in court.
For certain offenses, a Judge may Order you, as a condition of the judgment, “Not operate a motor vehicle on the public streets or highways of North Carolina until such time as properly licensed to do so by Division of Motor Vehicles or as may authorized pursuant to a valid Limited Driving Privilege.”
Failure to comply with that term or condition of the judgment may result in a violation of a suspended term of Supervised or Unsupervised Probation and activation of suspended jail time.
Not following any Court Order is a big deal in North Carolina and has consequences. If a Judge (or DMV) tells you not to drive, ignoring those directives only causes more problems and the potential for longer-and-longer periods of revocation.
New charges may also be brought by the State if you continue to drive for things like Driving While License Revoked / DWLR NOT Imp Revocation or even DWLR Imp Rev, which involves getting caught driving, while revoked due to an Impaired Driving Revocation (revoked for DWI conviction).
Defense lawyers tend to use the terms revocation and suspension interchangeably, understanding what we’re talking about is getting you legal to drive again.
Sometimes obtaining a license through NC DMV is a matter of clearing up legal issues (tickets and charges in court). Other times it may involve payment of fees, fines, and costs for restoration.
Here’s the key: Don’t pay old tickets until you talk to a lawyer. We offer a free consultation. That means we don’t charge anything to answer basic questions. We will explain your legal options.
We help people with License Revocation and License Restoration issues in the Charlotte metro area, including in Stanly, Union, Iredell, Mecklenburg, Rowan, and Gaston County NC.
We possess extensive experience both in court and handling DMV hearings.
If you don’t live in NC, we may be able to assist you with a remote or “virtual DMV hearing” using secure video conferencing.
“The best and smartest thing to do is address DMV issues head-on and do everything you can to get legal. Having a lawyer by your side at a DMV hearing is a good idea.”
– Bill Powers, NC DMV License Restoration Attorney
Call now for a free consult.