Perhaps you have received THAT letter – the one from the DMV which says your license is scheduled for an indefinite suspension. What has caused you to receive this letter, and what should be your next step?
For most people, the indefinite suspension happens for two reasons: (1) you failed to appear (FTA) at your scheduled court appearance for a a North Carolina traffic offense or (2) you failed to comply (FTC) with the monetary obligations for a North Carolina traffic ticket that was previously resolved.
Your failure to appear or your failure to pay can have serious consequences which lead to the suspension of your license. What most people don’t realize, however, is that your North Carolina license isn’t immediately suspended for either reason. For example, when you initially miss your scheduled court appearance, your ticket is marked as “called and failed”. As long as your ticket is rescheduled within 20 days, the DMV will not be notified, and thus, you will never get the dreaded, aforementioned letter.
The problem is that most people do not reschedule their North Carolina traffic ticket within 20 days, which then leads to the DMV being notified, and a “failure to appear” being entered. At that point, their license is still not suspended, however they must now resolve the case within 60 days. Otherwise, their license will be suspended at 12:00 a.m. on the 60th day.
What I have discovered is that many people confuse resolving the case with rescheduling the case. As a result, they have the mistaken belief that rescheduling the case halts the suspension process. Once the “failure to appear” is entered, the case must be rescheduled, disposed, and all applicable court costs, fine, and fees must be paid prior to the date and time indicated in the DMV letter.
The process for suspension is similar when North Carolina traffic tickets are not paid in a timely manner. Once the speeding ticket or other North Carolina traffic offense is resolved, you must pay the ordered court costs, fine, and applicable fees by the ordered compliance date. Normally, if you fail to pay within 20 days of that compliance date, the DMV will be notified and a “failure to comply” will be entered. Once again, the DMV will send a letter of notice which indicates that the person’s North Carolina license will be suspended unless the total amount due is not paid within 60 days. Once the “failure to comply” is entered, an additional fee of $50.00 will be owed.
Therefore, if your North Carolina license is suspended, or if you have received a North Carolina speeding ticket or some other type of citation for a North Carolina traffic offense, your best option is to call an attorney who is experienced and knowledgeable about North Carolina speeding and traffic tickets. By hiring an attorney, you may be able to have this case resolved without ever appearing in court. In addition, you don’t have to worry about missing work to appear, and your attorney will appear to make sure that you don’t receive a failure to appear.
An experienced traffic attorney, with experience in North Carolina traffic law, will guide you through this process to make sure that all of your rights are being protected and that all of your possible defenses are being asserted. Please call us at (336) 725-6559 and schedule a free consultation with a Winston-Salem traffic lawyer to assist you. Our office is located for your convenience in downtown Winston-Salem, North Carolina.