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Driving with a Suspended License in Washington State

Washington-suspended-licenseIf you are caught driving with a suspended license in Washington State you could be facing criminal charges and jail time. Driving with a suspended license is the most common crime committed in Washington State.

Common Causes for Suspended License

Having your Washington license suspended can happen for several reasons. The most common are:

1. Unpaid traffic tickets
2. Suspended because of a criminal conviction like a DUI
3. Suspended as a result of administrative suspension
4. Failure to properly reinstate your license after a license suspension (not paying the reinstatement fee or retaking the driving test)
5. Being involved in an accident but failing to have car insurance
6. For being a habitual traffic offender

Washington Suspended License Categories

Driving with a Washington suspended license, also known as driving with license suspended or DWLS has three degrees.

Driving With License Suspended 3rd Degree

DWLS 3rd is the least serious of the three degrees. It is a simple misdemeanor and carries a maximum of 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine. Very few people get jail time for this infraction. Your license can be suspended in the 3rd degree for unpaid traffic tickets or because you are eligible to reinstate after suspension due to a criminal charge but haven't reinstated yet. Many times, you can avoid criminal charges in Washington State if you reinstate your license in a timely manner. The help of an experienced criminal defense attorney is helpful in navigating this process.

Driving With License Suspend 2nd Degree

DWLS 2nd is much more serious than DWLS 3rd. It is a gross misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of 364 days in jail and a $5,000 fine. There are, however, no mandatory minimum penalties and most people convicted of DWLS 2nd don't get jail time. A conviction for DWLS 2nd carries an additional year license suspension beyond the Washington license suspension. There are only two ways to avoid the suspension 1) have your license back at the time of the sentencing and 2) the judge recommending against re-suspension. Most people receive a DWLS 2nd charge because of a prior criminal conviction such as a DUI or felony driving crime. Some people are eligible for a restricted license that will allow driving during the Washington license suspension. An experienced criminal defense attorney will be helpful in navigating through the suspension.

Driving With License Suspended 1st Degree

DWLS 1st is not issued that often but it comes with big consequences. It is a gross misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of 364 days in jail and $5,000 fine. If you are convicted of DWLS in the 1st degree, there is mandatory 10 days in jail for the first offense, 90 days of jail for a second offense, and 180 days for a third offense. Some judges allow the jail time to be served on electronic home monitoring. A charge of DWLS 1st is only issued to those that have been deemed a habitual traffic offender by the Department of Licensing and had their license suspended for seven years. Again, an experienced criminal defense attorney will be helpful in navigating through the suspension.

The best way to prevent a suspended license is to only drive when you are certain that you have a valid driver's license. If you are uncertain as to the status of your license, use the online tool provided by the Department of Licensing to check. If you have a Washington suspended license, the best thing you can do is to get it reinstated as quickly as possible. Use this free tool that tells you what you need to do reinstate your license. Your best bet is to hire a competent criminal defense attorney who can help you wade through the system and avoid any criminal charges if possible.

If you or a loved one were injured in an accident, you have enough to deal with. Let an experienced accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times bigger with the help of a lawyer. Call the caring accident attorneys at Tario & Associates, P.S. today for a FREE consultation! You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!

Gun Deaths on Decline

gun-deaths-declineIn 2010, guns were involved in the deaths of 31,076 Americans in homicides, suicides, and unintentional shootings. This breaks down to more than 85 deaths each day and more than three deaths each hour. There were also 73,505 Americans treated in emergency rooms for non-fatal gunshot wounds in 2010. Firearms were the third-leading cause of injury-related deaths nationwide in 2010, after poisoning and motor vehicle accidents. The United States accounts for nearly 75 percent of all murdered children in the developed world. American children are 17 times more likely to be murdered by firearms than children in other industrialized nations.

Despite the alarming numbers, gun homicide rates, along with all violent crime, peaked in 1993 and have dropped sharply over the last two decades. Compared with 1993, the firearm homicide rate dropped by 49 percent in 2010 and there were fewer deaths from violent crime, despite the nation's growing population. The rate for other violent crimes with a firearm such as assaults, robberies, and sex crimes was down 75 percent in 2011 compared to 1993. It is important to note, however, that violence plunged through the 1990s but has declined less significantly since 2000.

Gun Death Statistics

Homicide

  • In 2010, guns were involved in 11,078 homicides in the United States. This number accounted for almost 35 percent of all gun deaths and more than 68 percent of all homicides.
  • Between 2005 and 2010 there was an average of 33 gun homicides each day.

Suicide

  • In 2010, guns were used in 19,392 successful suicides in the United States. This number accounted for almost 62 percent of all gun deaths.
  • More than 50 percent of all suicides in the U.S. involve a firearm.
  • Between 2005 and 2010 there was on average 49 gun suicides each day.
  • White males represent 40 percent of the U.S. population and yet they accounted for over 80 percent of firearm suicides in 2010.
  • In 2010, firearms were the weapon of choice in 44 percent of suicide deaths among people under the age of 25.

Unintentional Deaths and Injuries

  • In 2010, 606 people were killed in unintentional firearm injuries.
  • Between 2005 and 2010, almost 3,800 people in the U.S. died from unintentional shootings.
  • On average, states with the highest gun levels had nine times the rate of unintentional firearm deaths compared to states with the lowest gun levels.

The U.S. General Accounting Office believes that 31 percent of unintentional deaths caused by firearms could be prevented by the addition of two devices: a child-proof safety lock (8 percent) and a loading indicator (23 percent).

If you or a loved one were injured in an accident, you have enough to deal with. Let an experienced accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times bigger with the help of a lawyer. Call the caring accident attorneys at Tario & Associates, P.S. today for a FREE consultation! You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!

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