Protect Your Driving Privileges Fight Your Ticket With Bigger & Harman Today

undefinedDriving with a suspended license is a misdemeanor traffic offense in California. Remember to use your “right to remain silent” until you consult with a lawyer. You cannot explain your way out of this traffic violation on the side of the freeway. Get the advice of a traffic lawyer.

Most individuals tend to underestimate the severity of this driving offense. We've seen too many drivers face severe consequences for this seemingly minor violation. So, let us delve into what driving with a suspended license entails in the Golden State.

Can I See Your License, Registration, & Proof of Insurance

When you’re heading to the coast on Highway #46 or I-5 in Shafter with the family and see the flashing lights and siren, signal your intentions, pull over to the curb, and keep your hands on the steering wheel. Do not reach for your documents until the law enforcement officer (LEO) asks for them.

It's a question every LEO asks, which every driver dreads, especially when driving with a suspended license. In California, this is not just a traffic infraction—it's a misdemeanor crime

“A misdemeanor is a type of offense punishable under criminal law. A misdemeanor is typically a crime punishable by less than 12 months in jail.”Cornell Law School Legal Information Institute (LII).

The gravity of being caught in this act cannot be stressed enough. A conviction carries a “base fine” of up to $1,000. However, when one factors in court costs, surcharges, and county assessments, that amount can balloon to nearly $3,000

It's not just about the money. The real threat lies in potential incarceration and criminal record.  A driver could find themselves locked up in the Kern County jail for up to six months or, if they're lucky, released on probation. 

There Is No “Get Out of Jail Free Card” in Real Life

Beyond the immediate financial and legal ramifications of driving with a suspended license, there are profound personal consequences. 

A conviction tarnishes your reputation. Employers, friends, neighbors, and colleagues will suddenly see you in a different light. This misdemeanor leads to a criminal record, which can lead to possible job loss or prevent future employment opportunities. 

The ripple effect doesn't stop with the individual. Families suffer. Children, spouses, and extended family face the stigma and challenges of having a loved one with a criminal record.

You Need a Traffic Lawyer with Court Experience 

Facing the legal system alone, especially with a charge as serious as a misdemeanor driving with a suspended license, is a gamble no one should take. That's where we can help. With our vast experience in traffic law trials, we offer a beacon of hope.

Many judges consider it a wobbler; certainly, it’s a serious offense, but many don’t consider it worthy of a criminal record—especially based on the original suspension. If the suspension was for failure to pay a traffic fine, it might be easier to understand if the driver was insolvent.

A wobbler is when a law is on the books as a misdemeanor, but the circumstances don’t fit the labeling of it as a criminal act.

The Cornell Law School LII WEX provides the definition of a wobbler/woblette:

“Wobblers can be punishable as either a felony or a misdemeanor and has been referred to as an ‘alternative felony/misdemeanor.’ Whether a wobbler should be treated as a felony, or a misdemeanor is up to a trial court's discretion.”

An experienced and knowledgeable attorney can often negotiate with the judge or district attorney on your behalf to reduce the charge to an infraction with no  probation or jail time. However, this negotiation will not preclude them from disputing the charge.  

Not all charges end in convictions. With the right representation, there's a chance for dismissal or a reduced charge, which could mean avoiding a criminal record entirely. Every case has nuances, and often, technicalities and procedural errors can be leveraged in the defendant's favor. We scrutinize every detail, ensuring the best possible results for our clients.

In conclusion, while driving with a suspended license might seem like a minor indiscretion, it can have significant consequences in California. If you or someone you know faces such charges, remember that the right legal support can make a world of difference.   

Consult with Bigger & Harman When You are Accused of Driving with a Suspended License 

Call Bigger & Harman in Bakersfield at (661) 349-9300 when you have an unresolved speeding ticket in Shafter Courthouse in Kern County, CA. Se habla Español (661) 349-9755.

Likewise, utilize our easy to use contact form or email Please include a copy/picture of your citation and a brief summary of the stop.


The CA Driver Handbook English y Español.

Cornell Law School LII WEX Definitions: Misdemeanor & Wobbler/wobblette.

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