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My brother received a traffic citation in in 1992. His

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My brother received a traffic...
My brother received a traffic citation in Virginia in 1992. His license is now suspended by virginia. He lives in Oklahoma. He received the citation while he was in the army. Traveling back home after AIT training. He had forgotten about them and when he went to renew his license it was suspended. We contacted Virginia and they want $1700 to clear his license. He asked for them to be set for court but the refused. They told him he missed his court date and could not get another. That he was found guility and must pay to get the hold removed. How can they refuse him the right to a trial? What options does he have here. Paying the fine is not an option. he does not have the money and they also refused to set it on a payment plan.
Submitted: 1 year ago.Category: Criminal Law
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9/26/2016
Criminal Lawyer: CalAttorney2, Attorney replied 1 year ago
CalAttorney2
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Criminal Lawyer: CalAttorney2, Attorney replied 1 year ago

I am very sorry to learn of your brother's situation.

Unfortunately, the way in which you have asked your question makes it difficult for me to give you a legally correct answer.

Your brother was not deprived of his due process rights - he had a right to a hearing at the time he was cited. The fact that he did not address the citation in 1992 does not mean he is now entitled to a second hearing. So the state is entirely correct in denying him a hearing at this time.

You also say that "paying the fine is not an option" - your brother can refuse to pay the fine, but he will not be able to obtain a driver's license. (He may have been fortunate enough to have had a license issued in the past despite the outstanding citation, but once the state starts reporting his license as being suspended it is going to be impossible for him to renew or get a new license in any state with a suspension on his record).

So really, this is the only option if your brother wants to be a licensed driver.

The best alternative he can hope for is make a trip or hire a lawyer in VA to petition the court (the judge, not the clerk's office) for a payment plan, which usually comes with an added service charge or fee (so it ends up costing more money). But by the time he goes and does either of these, he will have been able to pay the entire $1,700.00 fine and not wasted either a trip or a lawyer's fee on a hearing that may or may not succeed.

I do understand that this situation must be very frustrating for your brother, but unfortunately the enforcement of the fine does not carry a statute of limitations, and until it is dealt with (meaning paid in full), his license will continue to be suspended. If he chooses to drive without a license or with a suspended license, he runs a risk of being cited for that offense as well, further complicating his situation.

Again, I am sorry if this is not the information you were hoping for, but I do hope that the explanation of the matter is helpful in some way.

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Customer reply replied 1 year ago

he does not have the money to pay the fine. He does not have the money to hire an attorney in VA. So because of his financial situation the court can further deny him? He is being criminalized for being poor. So rather than give him a payment plan and an option to be on the right side of the law they can legally deny him because of money and keep him a criminal.....

I will seek further advice. If I find you to be correct I will rate as such if I find you to be incorrect well you get the idea.

Criminal Lawyer: CalAttorney2, Attorney replied 1 year ago

Again, I am very sorry to learn about your brother's situation, and I am not minimize the matter or the amount of the fine.

I wish you both the best.

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