Habitual Traffic Offender Defense Lawyer in Charleston, SC

When traffic violations start to accumulate, they can spin out of control and your license will be revoked by the SCDMV as a “habitual offender.”

There are two ways to get habitual offenders status: accumulation of ten or more minor traffic violations within three years, or accumulation of three or more major violations within three years.

Once you are declared a habitual offender by the SCDMV, your license is revoked for a period of five years…

What’s a Habitual Offender?

You can be declared a SC habitual traffic offender if you have three or more major traffic violations or ten or more minor traffic violations within a three-year period.

Habitual Traffic Offender for Major Traffic Violations

SC Code Section 56-1-1020 lists the traffic offenses that will result in habitual offender status, which include:

Three or more convictions, singularly or in combination of any of the following separate and distinct offenses arising out of separate acts:

(1) Voluntary manslaughter, involuntary manslaughter or reckless homicide resulting from the operation of a motor vehicle;

(2) Operating or attempting to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, narcotics or drugs;

(3) Driving or operating a motor vehicle in a reckless manner;

(4) Driving a motor vehicle while his license, permit, or privilege to drive a motor vehicle has been suspended or revoked, except a conviction for driving under suspension for failure to file proof of financial responsibility;

(5) Any offense punishable as a felony under the motor vehicle laws of this State or any felony in the commission of which a motor vehicle is used; [or]

(6) Failure of the driver of a motor vehicle involved in any accident resulting in the death or injury of any person to stop close to the scene of such accident and report his identity…

Habitual Traffic Offender for Minor Traffic Offenses

You can also be declared a habitual offender for accumulating ten or more minor traffic violations within three years – any SC traffic offense that carries a potential penalty of four or more points will count.

What if I’m Charged with Driving Under Suspension (DUS) While I am a Habitual Offender?

DUS while a habitual traffic offender in SC is a criminal offense that carries up to five years in prison – the case will be heard in General Sessions Court, not the lower magistrate or municipal courts.

Can I Get My License Back Sooner if I am a Habitual Offender?

We can help you to get your license reinstated after two years if:

  • There are no other license suspensions that have not been served;
  • You did not drive during the two-year period;
  • You did not have any traffic offenses during the two-year period;
  • You did not have any alcohol or drug-related convictions or charges during the two-year period; and
  • This is your first habitual offender revocation.

SC Habitual Offender and Driver’s License Suspension Attorney in Charleston

If you have been charged with driving under suspension while a habitual offender in SC, or if you have been declared a habitual traffic offender and want to apply for early reinstatement of your license, call Charleston criminal defense lawyer Grant B. Smaldone now at (843) 808-2100 or fill out our online contact form to set up a free consultation about your case.