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Orange County Criminal Defense Attorney
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Suspended Driver Licenses in California

Like Texas, California is a BIG state and most people need their driver license to get around. California is not like places, such as New York City or Salt Lake City where you can get everywhere easily due to excellent public transportation. Instead, you have to have a reliable vehicle, otherwise it can be very difficult to earn a decent living.

In California, there are several reasons why someone might lose their driver license and it is not limited to driving under the influence (DUI) and having too many speeding tickets, though those are included on the list. When conditions are ripe, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) can suspend or revoke a person’s driver license.

If your driver license is suspended or revoked, it means you are strictly forbidden from driving until the DMV lifts the suspension or revocation and you go through the steps to have the DMV reinstate your driver license.


There are 9 main reasons why someone’s California driver license would be suspended, including:

  • If you’re in an accident without insurance, your license will be suspended for four years. After a one-year suspension, it is possible to get your license back if you can provide the DMV with proof of insurance and you maintain it.
  • If you fail to report an accident, your license can be suspended.
  • A conviction for driving under the influence.
  • If you are underage and you drink alcohol, you can lose your license for one year, or until you turn 18, whichever occurs later.
  • If you fail or refuse a chemical test, your license will be suspended for one year, even if you are innocent.
  • If you have too many points on your driving record, your license will be suspended for six months or it will be revoked.
  • If you commit vandalism, your driver license will be suspended for one year.
  • If you fail to appear in court for a traffic ticket, your license will be suspended.
  • If you fail to pay child support under Section 17520 of the Family Code.


It all depends on why your license was suspended in the first place, but fortunately we can shed light on your situation so you know exactly what needs to be done to get your license reinstated. We can also discuss the possibility of getting a restricted license.

To learn more and get the help you need, contact our Orange County criminal and traffic defense firm today.

Related: What Can Happen to My License After DUI?