Proposed Bill Aims to End License Suspensions for Unpaid Tickets

A newly proposed bill from a San Fernando Valley legislator is aiming to put an end to driver’s license suspensions for unpaid traffic tickets. Here are some key points about the legislation:

  • Senate Bill 405 was authored by California Senator Bob Hertzberg. The bill proposes changes to current state laws that implement driver’s license suspensions for drivers who have unpaid traffic tickets for non-violent offenses, including broken taillights and expired tags.
  • Under current state law, drivers who have unpaid traffic tickets can have their licenses suspended for unpaid fees, fines, and assessments. In order to have their driving privileges restored, motorists are required to pay any outstanding fines. Traffic fines across the state account for nearly $10 billion in uncollected court-ordered debt.
  • If passed, SB 405 would restore licenses for millions of California residents, and outstanding fees will be collected through the Traffic Amnesty program, another proposed law by Governor Jerry Brown.

The proposed bill is gaining wide support from lawmakers and residents across the state, as it restores fairness to a system that often penalizes low income residents and pushes them deeper into poverty. Hertzberg has cited many instances of a broken system under current law, including one case where a driver had their license suspended and accumulated $2,900 in outstanding fees after receiving a $25 ticket for failing to notify the DMV of an address change.

In addition to helping over 4 million Californians restore their licenses, the law could potentially make roadways safer. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), as many as 75% of motorists who have their licenses suspended still drive - often without insurance.

At the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc., we have helped many California motorists resolve issues with driver’s license suspensions, including matters involving unpaid fines. If you have questions about your driver’s license, visit our Orange County DMV website or contact us today!

Categories: DMV Hearings

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