Driving Under Suspension Toronto
Every city, as well as Toronto, is striving to provide safety on its roads. Hence, those drivers who have been convicted in driving offences can have their driving license suspended or even revoked.
If you have a temptation to drive under suspension for even something small as unpaid fines you are seriously risking to lose your driving licence for additional 6 months upon first conviction with a minimum $1,000 to $5,000 fine plus or including jail time to be served!
Let’s start with spotting some of the regulatory acts.
So, if you received a summons to court for driving with suspended license in Ontario according to section 53 of the Highway Traffic Act – it means that you were operating a motor vehicle while your driver’s licence has been disqualified or prohibited by court-imposed suspension for unpaid fines, or other offences resulting in specific term prohibiting you from driving as a form of punishment.
As mentioned above, there are administrative driver’s licence suspensions and those that were imposed by a court order specifically restricting you from touching a steering wheel for a specific period of time.
Reasons for License Suspension
The most widespread reasons are the following:
- Driving while under the influence of alcohol/drugs;
- Suspension due to medical reasons;
- Unpaid penalties;
- Failure to appear for trial;
- Exceeding of demerit points’ limit;
- Careless driving etc.
Penalties For Driving With a Suspended License in Toronto
- first offence: minimum fine will be $1,000 and up to $5,000;
- subsequent offences: fine will be from $2,000 to $5,000;
- or imprisonment for a term of up to six months;
- or even both – fine and jail time.
As you can see, this is a serious offence with serious consequences. But if you were caught driving with suspended license Toronto and convicted under a Criminal Code offence, fines will be thousands of dollars and imprisonment is unavoidable.
According to the Highway Traffic Act, there are no demerit points associated with the offence in case of conviction, but insurance companies can use it against you to increase your insurance rates at least by 50% for the next 6 years.
Important: when you end up convicted for driving under suspended license it will remain on your driving record forever, which means every subsequent offence will be subject to higher fines and more severe punishment. A record for driving while suspended Toronto does not go away after 3 years.
What To Do If You’re Charged With Driving Under Suspension?
- Stop driving your motor vehicle under any circumstances.
- Make arrangements to get to the nearest Service Ontario office or call the Ministry of Transportation in Ontario to reinstate your driver’s licence privileges.
- Prepare for a court date. Get ready to answer that your driver’s licence has been reinstated to have an opportunity to resolve your case to another substitute offence that will not have the same consequences when it comes to future insurance premiums or be prepared to conduct a trial.
- Because this is a strict liability offence, you will have an opportunity to present an argument as to why it happened that you ended up driving while suspended in Toronto. Should there be a convincing argument that demonstrates the fact you could not have possibly known that you were suspended which essentially makes the offence innocent you will be acquitted at trial.
As you can see, the process of fighting traffic tickets for driving while suspended is quite a time- and effort-consuming requires experience and good strategy. Moreover, a conviction may result in severe penalties. Thus, it’s better to save your money and time and to contact a lawyer for driving on suspended license as soon as possible and get legal representation.
How to Fight Driving Under Suspension in Toronto?
- Reinstate your driving licence and prepare an official proof that it has been reinstated.
- Request a police officer’s disclosure to understand the situation.
- Develop a defence strategy before your court appearance according to the disclosure information. Penalty for driving with a suspended license in Toronto can be a much more complex matter than a regular speeding offence and courts do not treat them lightly as minor offences.
- Show up on the date specified on the summons given to you by a policeman and tell the court you are seeking a trial.
- A trial will be set for you so that next time you show up to court a police officer will have to attend as the main witness who conducted an investigation.
- At trial, be ready to demonstrate that you had done everything in your power to avoid committing an offence, show due diligence because the standard of proof is very high. Prove that you had done everything to avoid breaking the law but it’s through no fault of your own that your driver’s licence ended up being suspended.
- Bring any documents or letters that have any relevant information to your case. If your documents are in order and your driver’s licence has been reinstated accompanied by proof of paying off your fines, doctor’s notes, etc. it often takes at least 1 to 3 court visits to finalize your case.
When it comes to fighting driving under suspension penalties you should definitely prepare by researching previously decided cases to understand what evidence courts consider when making a decision after the trial has been completed.
A well-prepared strategy must be crafted prior to trial to ensure that your questions and arguments used can be applied in your situation.
We strongly advise that you consult with traffic tickets experts about your defence strategy or help you negotiate the best possible deal with the court without sabotaging your chances because you only get one opportunity to defend your rights.
X-COPS already faced a lot of various cases and know exactly how to proceed in a better way. Contact us for assistance with the alleviation of your driving under suspension charge. Even if it’s your 2nd, 5th or even 6th offense driving while suspended – we can handle it!