How does license restoration work in North Carolina?

A suspended or revoked license can make your life difficult. Going from place to place becomes a hassle when you cannot drive. And if your job required you to operate a motor vehicle, you may face termination for your violation. Yet, no matter what led to your license’s suspension or revocation, you have ways to restore it. Understanding how to do so may prove crucial for your livelihood.

Restoring a suspended license

In North Carolina, license suspensions refer to the temporary loss of driving privileges. These last for a fixed amount of time, and you do not need to reapply for your license once your suspension ends. Yet, you will need to pay a restoration fee to regain your driving privileges. In most cases, this fee is $65. If DWI charges led to your license suspension, you will have to pay $130 instead.

License suspensions happen for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Driving 15 mph or more over the speed limit when traveling at a speed greater than 55 mph
  • Driving faster than 80 mph
  • Driving in a reckless manner
  • Driving with an already suspended license
  • Driving while impaired
  • Accumulating 12 points on your license within a three-year period

Restoring a revoked license

Restoring a revoked license is far more difficult than restoring a suspended license. Revocations usually happen if you’ve committed multiple offenses over a short period or while driving with a suspended license. Your license will also face revocation if you have received three or more DWIs. No matter the cause, you must wait two years after a permanent revocation to apply for limited driving privileges and three years before you can petition for your license’s reinstatement. Beyond paying fees, you may have to attend a DMV hearing to prove you are eligible to have your driving privileges restored.

A restored license will give you a path forward after its suspension or revocation. Yet, without help, working toward reinstatement may not lead to the desired outcome. An attorney with criminal defense experience can guide you through the steps you need to take to restore your driving privileges.

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