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Hinman Law Blog

Operating with a Suspended License/Negligent Operation

Operating a Motor Vehicle with a Suspended License

It is a crime in Massachusetts to operate a motor vehicle if your license has been suspended or revoked. In order to convict you of this crime, the government must prove that you or your agent, such as a household member or employer, had received notice that your license was suspended. If you have moved, you are obligated to provide your new address to the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV). There are various reasons why your license might be suspended:

  • Failing to take a Breathalyzer during an OUI arrest
  • 3 speeding tickets within a 12-month period
  • 3 moving violations within a 24-month period
  • Prior motor vehicle offenses
  • Prior drug offenses
  • Failure to register as a sex offender
  • Being deemed a habitual traffic offender
  • Failure to pay child support
  • Failure to pay state taxes
  • Failure to pay property damage claims
  • Out-of-state license suspension

Whatever the reason is that your license is suspended, this is a crime that has serious penalties, including hefty fines, further license suspension, and even incarceration. Conviction of a first offense under this statute can carry a penalty of up to 10 days in jail and/or a $1000 fine, as well as a further license suspension. Conviction of a second offense imposes a minimum jail sentence of 60 days, and a maximum of 1 year. It is important that you work with a skilled criminal lawyer who can help you parse through the paperwork, navigate the RMV, and evaluate the circumstances of your offense to determine the best course of action.

Operating an Uninsured Motor Vehicle

In Massachusetts, it is illegal to drive a car – whether it’s yours or someone else’s-without proper insurance. Being unaware that your insurance has lapsed is not a defense. This may seem like a minor offense, but it can subject you to fines of up to $5000, loss of license, and jail time.

Operating an Unregistered Motor Vehicle

Failure to properly register your car, or failure to keep your registration current is a minor offense, but can involve various fines and complicated RMV issues. Hiring an attorney to help navigate the paperwork and RMV issues can result in a quick and painless resolution of your case.

Negligent Operation/Operating to Endanger/Reckless Endangerment

If you are charged with Negligent Operation of a Motor Vehicle, the state must prove that you operated a motor vehicle in a negligent manner so that the lives or safety of the public might have been endangered. Whether or not you drove negligently can depend on your speed, your physical condition, the condition of the vehicle, the time of day, the type of road, weather conditions, and other relevant factors. A conviction under this law will result in a license suspension, fines, and up to 2 years in jail.

If you have been charged with a motor vehicle crime in Wellesley, Newton, Brookline, Weston, Framingham, Wayland, Sudbury, Cambridge, Dedham, Needham, Boston, or anywhere in Suffolk, Middlesex, or Norfolk Counties, contact Attorney Hinman for immediate assistance at 617-283-4480, or by using the form to the left.