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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 117383
Experience:  Attorney with over 20 years law enforcement, prosecution, civil rights and defense experience
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Hello, I was charged for operating a car with suspended license

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Hello, I was charged for operating a car with suspended license and I plead not guilty on the court. But the problem is that I can't find any strong defense for myself and I need to get my car back which has been towed on the day I was pulled over. I think I can only get my car back when I make all the payments for the case. However, the date for me to go to the court is on Dec. 3rd which means that is a quite a long time. So I want to plea guilty before that date. Do you think is it good to do that and how can I do it? Thank you.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

No, it is not a good idea to just walk in and plead guilty without getting an attorney, because this is a misdemeanor case in most situatiions and carries a possible jail sentence of up to 12 months in jail (it is a felony with up to 2.5 years in prison if you were a habitual traffic offender). You are entitled to an attorney if you cannot afford one and you need to exercise your right to have one and do not represent yourself.

The attorney will meet with the prosecutor and will negotiate a deal with them regarding the car and your sentence on the charge and possibly get a deal from the prosecutor to keep the fine minimal. They will not let you pleadguilty before the date without an attorney so you need to get an attorney or get a public defender if you cannot afford an attorney and they will begin negotiaing with the prosecutor.

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This is NOT the practice of law nor is it legal advice to you, it is merely educational information for you to use to seek out a licensed attorney in your state to get actual legal advice from them. Please use sites such as or or to find a local attorney to get actual legal advice in all matters.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Okay. But this is my first time to drive with a suspended license. And during the court, the prosecutor charged me a fine for $200 and that is it.

Thank you for your response.

He could fine you, but the sentence and conviction is still a misdemeanor criminal conviction, meaning you have a criminal record and this can hurt you with jobs and even lease applications. You said you did not plead guilty yet, so you have a constitutional right to an attorney and you need to exercise that because your attorney many times can negotiate with the prosecutor to get a deferred adjudication which would allow you to later have the charge dismissed or come up with some other way to help reduce the fine or the payment to get your car out of impound.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you. So you mean that if I get an attorney to help me I might not be charged with a criminal conviction? Actually I was traveling abroad during the summer vacation and I moved to a new place when I came back to United States so I did not receive any notice from the RMV to say that my license was suspended. Is it a good defense that I can use?

Thank you for your response.

I cannot guarantee you would not have a conviction, but your chances of negotiating a deal with the prosecutor are greatly increased with using an attorney, especially in your situation, since they have to prove you KNEW the license was suspended that you were driving on. If they cannot prove you knew or should have known and received notice, then you have a good chance of getting out of it.
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