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What’s the Difference Between a Suspended and Revoked License?

Drivers who get a few tickets or experience a car accident will soon learn about the North Carolina “points” system for a driver’s license. If you have multiple driving violations, you will begin to hear about either a license suspension or revocation. Both of these punishments occur due to reckless or irresponsible driving. But what’s the difference?

A suspended license means your driving privilege is temporarily withdrawn for a specific period. You may be able to get your license back after meeting certain terms.

A revoked license means your driving privilege is terminated. You can only get it back if you meet eligibility requirements and any conditions or terms set forth in a hearing with the N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles.

The primary difference between these situations is that a suspended license is temporary, and a revoked license is indefinite or even permanent. That’s why a revoked license is a more pressing punishment than a suspension.

Types of Suspensions

There are two types of suspensions: indefinite and definite. A definite suspension has a set end date, while an indefinite suspension includes a list of actions one must pursue to obtain driving privileges again.

Here is the breakdown of the two:

Suspended License

The act of suspension derives from incautious driving and each offense generates points onto one’s license. North Carolina applies points to a driver’s license with the following guideline:

  • First suspension: 60 days
  • Second suspension: six months
  • Third suspension: one year

If a driver’s points accrue to 12 points in three years, then a suspension may be followed. The following are examples of violations and the number of points added:

  1. Passing a stopped school bus – five points
  2. Not stopping for a siren – three points
  3. Driving on the wrong side of the road – four points
  4. Not stopping at a stop sign – three points
  5. Driving through a red light – three points

What to Know about a Revoked License

If you keep up the behaviors that lead to a license suspension, you have a good chance at getting your license revoked. You might also get your license revoked if you are convicted of multiple DUI’s and numerous acts of drag racing or reckless driving.

If you are notified that your license will be revoked, talk to a traffic ticket lawyer about your options. Going to court and speaking to a judge may give you a chance to drive again — eventually. You may face charges, assigned courses, and specific demands. Please note: If a person with a revoked license drives, he or she can face jail time or hefty fines.

Are you facing a suspension or revocation of your license? Contact our team for advice and help.

What Our Clients

Have Said...

Oliver and Sherrie M. – Car Accident

“We were hit head-on by someone who run a red light. I got bruised up real bad inside and I had just had shoulder surgery and it inflamed that. My wife was hurt the worst. It disfigured her right arm. We were referred to Mr. West through our son-in-law so we went up and set an appointment with him. We went in and met him for the first time and he is a very nice gentleman to say the least. He took over the case and found out who the [driver] was. It had totaled the car and I had just gotten it paid off. They didn’t even get hurt. Mr. West took the case and went way out of his way to help. The lady who hit us … they had only the cheapest insurance to get the car on the road … so he helped us get more money to help us pay the bills. We are very happy with how it turned out. Kelly and West, they’re good people. You can talk to them and they’re down home people.”