Driving should be regarded as a privilege. Bear in mind that you can stay without it in an instant. This is particularly true for dangerous drivers and habitual traffic violators. They are punished seriously by the Washington traffic courts. Your driving license can get suspended or canceled in the worst-case scenario. Read on to learn more about license suspension in Washington and how to get it back.
- 1. Check the Current WA Driver’s License Status
- 2. Buying WA Driving Records
- 3. Buying a Driving Record for Someone Else
- 4. License Suspension in Washington
- 5. What Are the Most Common Causes of License Suspensions in Washington?
- 6. What are the Penalties for Driving with a Suspended Driver’s License in Washington?
- 7. How to Handle License Suspension in Washington
- 8. WA Driver’s License Reinstatement
- 9. How to Earn a Restricted License
- 10. How to Keep My Driving Record Clean
Check the Current WA Driver’s License Status
It is always a good idea to check the license status now and then. That will let you know whether your license is suspended, revoked, active, or expired. As you already know, driving with a suspended or expired license is illegal. That said, make sure your driver’s license is active and valid before getting behind the wheel.
You may use this online service to check your license status in Washington. After entering your license number, you will quickly get an answer – YES or NO. If the answer is YES, your driver’s license is valid and active yet. If the portal says NO, then the license isn’t valid.
In case of an invalid license, you should consider reinstating it with the help of an online tool. It will save you the hassle of going through DOL’s personalized instructions. Simply enter your date of birth, name, and ID card number or driver’s license number. You will also need to provide the color of your eyes as stated on your ID or license. The tool will quickly give the results required. In addition to gaining an insight into things that affect your Washington driver’s license, you will also get clear instructions on how to reinstate your license.
What Details Are Provided During Status Check?
Please note that the aforesaid portal and tool won’t reveal any personal information or details about driving records. It’s a simple search and there are only two results available:
- Yes – It means your license is current.
- No – It means your license is suspended, revoked, expired, canceled, or denied.
What’s Not Provided?
- Private or personal information about the license owner. You can only find out whether the license is valid or not.
- Driving records that contain information about license suspensions, violations, collisions, or convictions. To get these details, you need to submit the driving record request.
- Reinstatement status of the license. For this information, you should either go to a driver licensing office in Washington or contact customer service by calling (360) 902-3900.
Buying WA Driving Records
Perhaps you don’t have internet access or don’t know the number of your driver’s license. If so, you can purchase a copy of your WA driving record to get the information needed. It costs $13. You can buy it through this website, assuming that you have a printer or email address and a credit card.
Also, you can purchase a WA driving record by filling out and sending a Driving Record Request to:
Driver Records, Department of Licensing
PO Box 3907
Seattle, WA 98124-3907
It takes requests an average of 2 weeks to get processed. You can include either a money order or check. Make sure it is payable to the Department of Licensing.
Buying a Driving Record for Someone Else
Not everyone can get a copy of the driving record on behalf of another person. Listed below are individuals and companies that can purchase a driving record for someone else:
- Government agencies (law, justice, etc.)
- Prospective or actual employers
- Transit authorities
- Insurance companies
- State universities and colleges
- School districts
- Volunteer organizations
If you want to request a driving record for a volunteer, employee, or prospective employee, you need to obtain a Driving Record Release of Interest. This form should be kept in your files; it shouldn’t be mailed.
License Suspension in Washington
Is your WA driver’s license suspended? What does it mean?
Well, that means you have lost your driving privilege in Washington for up to 364 days. The loss of this privilege for 365 or more days means your license is revoked. If your driver’s license is canceled, you can no longer drive in Washington.
What Are the Most Common Causes of License Suspensions in Washington?
Driving privilege can be lost in many different ways. Many people lose it by accumulating a lot of traffic violations in a relatively short period. If you get tickets five times in two years or four times in one year, you will end up losing your driver’s license. There is a point system is in Washington that is meant to punish Habitual Traffic Violators.
Traffic violations that often lead to license suspensions include:
- Driving without insurance
- Driving under the Influence (DUI)
- Fatal at-fault accidents
- Reckless driving
- Fleeing the scene of an accident (hit and run conviction)
What are the Penalties for Driving with a Suspended Driver’s License in Washington?
Driving on a suspended license is deemed to be a serious traffic violation. It often results in an extended suspension period. In the worst case, your license can be revoked. If you get caught, you’re likely to face suspension for one year or more.
How to Handle License Suspension in Washington
Keep in mind that you’ll be able to appeal the sentence up to 15 days after receiving a notice of your suspension. The form you’ve received indicates your WA DMV Suspended License. It also informs you of how to appeal by taking certain steps. Alternatively, you can try to defer your sentence by taking a defensive driving course. Only people with minor traffic violations can take advantage of it, though.
WA Driver’s License Reinstatement
Thankfully, you will be able to get your driver’s license reinstated when your suspension period expires. All you need to do is pay a $75 fee and submit a Financial Responsibility (SR-22 form) to the court. Sometimes there are additional licensing fees, too. For more information on how to reinstate your license, get in touch with the Washington Department of Licensing by email (email@example.com) or by phone – call (360) 902-3900.
How to Earn a Restricted License
In some cases, drivers can obtain an Occupational/Restricted License that enables them to drive from or to vital locations like their workplace or school. However, this type of driver’s license limits drivers to drive during specific hours to specified places. If you want to apply for an Occupational/Restricted Driver License, be ready to pay a fee of $100. There are also supplemental fees sometimes. Make sure you are eligible to earn a restricted license before applying for it in Washington.
How to Keep My Driving Record Clean
Have you recently received a traffic ticket? Don’t worry, you will be capable of deferring it and removing points from your license. This is where defensive driving courses come in. Check your driving record status after completing a defensive driving course in Washington. Aside from getting credit for the course, your ticket won’t appear on your public driving record anymore.