Washington State Bar Association

Driving on a Suspended License (DWLS)

There are three degrees of Driving on a suspended license. DWLS in the first degree is often the charge for a habitual traffic offender. This crime is considered a gross misdemeanor punishable up to a maximum sentence of 365 days in jail and a $5000 fine. There is a mandatory jail sentence for DWLS 1st degree of 10 days in jail on a first conviction. A second conviction of DWLS 1st degree carries a mandatory sentence of 90 days in jails. A third conviction for a DWLS 1st degree mandates a 180 day jail sentence. Moreover, if an individual is charged with Driving while License Suspended in the second degree( DWLS 2), this charge is also a gross misdemeanor which is often imposed if one is accused of driving on a suspended license after receiving a DUI conviction or Reckless Driving conviction. DWLS 3rd degree occurs when an individual drives while their license is suspended but would have been eligible to have had their license reinstated at the time. This charge could be imposed if one’s license was suspended for not paying tickets. The law offices of Deborah Alexander, Attorney at Law, PLLC could often negotiate a DWLS 3 charge to an infraction or dismissal.

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