VC 14601 (a) – Driving Vehicle on a Suspended License Misdemeanor Charges In California

If you have been charged with a Misdemeanor charge VC 14601 for driving while your license is suspended in California the following penalties may apply if you are convicted in court:

  1.  Misdemeanors are criminal offences which stay on your criminal history report for 10 years

  2. Misdemeanors cases usually go to a separate criminal division of courts, not to the normal traffic departments

  3. Misdemeanors carry potential jail time

  4. Misdemeanors may affect your ability to get a new job since employers will see it on your criminal background check

  5. Misdemeanors may affect your ability to travel to other countries and affect immigration

  6. Misdemeanors carry  high fine amounts that are approx $1000 or more

The lawyers at California Traffic Tickets have an 80-90%+ win rate at helping our clients win or reduce their misdemeanor charges.  Our lawyers handle all court appearances and our clients are usually not required to come to court at all.  If a dismissal is not possible, our lawyers are usually able to negotiate Misdemeanor charges down to simple infractions which are non-criminal charges.  In the end our lawyers are usually able to help our clients with none of the above penalties.

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VC 14601(a) No person shall drive a motor vehicle at any time when that person’s driving privilege is suspended or revoked for reckless driving in violation of Section 23103, 23104, or 23105, any reason listed in subdivision (a) or (c) of Section 12806 authorizing the department to refuse to issue a license, negligent or incompetent operation of a motor vehicle as prescribed in subdivision (e) of Section 12809, or negligent operation as prescribed in Section 12810.5, if the person so driving has knowledge of the suspension or revocation. Knowledge shall be conclusively presumed if mailed notice has been given by the department to the person pursuant to Section 13106. The presumption established by this subdivision is a presumption affecting the burden of proof.

Violations of California Vehicle Code VC 14601 (a) are very serious criminal charges that can have negative consequences that last for 10 years or more.  These are misdemeanor violations, which are criminal offenses.  Misdemeanor violations will give the driver a criminal record for 7-10 years, which will show up on most background searches.

The penalties for violating VC 14601 (a) includes 2 points on the DMV record for 10 years, possible jail sentence of 4 days to 6 months, and fines between $300 to $1,000. 

Driving on a suspended license can double, even triple, a driver’s insurance rates for many years.

If charged with VC 14601 (a), it is highly recommended to hire an experienced attorney to help with this.  An experienced attorney will often get a far better outcome for a driver than that person could obtain on their own.

This is why you never want to accept the charges, plead guilty, and pay the fines for driving on a suspended license violations.