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  • Matthew W. Peterson

What are the Penalties for Driving with a Suspended License?


If you're caught driving with a suspended license, this can be a serious or minor offense depending on your circumstances.

If your driver's license is suspended and you're caught driving, this can mean anything from jail time to a fine. The charge is operating with a suspended license and is sometimes called OAS (operating after suspension). In many courts around Massachusetts, these types of charges are regularly dismissed upon paying a minor fine, but if you have a long history of these offenses, this could be more serious.


Technically, on your first offense, a driving while suspended ticket can mean up to 10 days in jail and/or a $1,000 fine. A second offense can mean up to a year in jail, while repeated offenses can be a felony.


If you're convicted of operating after suspension, your license will also be suspended for an additional sixty days.


However, there are many ways to avoid these consequences, such as a dismissal of the case on payment of a fine or a continuance without a finding. Many courts will also continue the case to allow you to get your license reinstated, and then dismiss the case once you get your license back.


Operating After Suspension for OUI


If your license was suspended because of an OUI, though, the penalties are much more serious, including mandatory jail time.


If your license is suspended for an OUI conviction, there is a mandatory minimum sentence of 60 days in the House of Corrections, a $1,000 fine, and an additional one-year license suspension.


If your license is suspended because of an OUI arrest and you're found driving before the OUI case is resolved, the penalties can be much more severe. There is a mandatory minimum one year in jail, $2,500 fine, and an additional one-year license suspension.



If you've been arrested for operating after suspension (OAS), it can be important to contact a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Although my office is located in Boston, I handle criminal cases all around Massachusetts. Contact me today at 617-356-8217, and let's get started on your defense.

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