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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2015

    Default Driver's License Reinstatement Fees Owed Despite Paying All Court Fines

    My question involves a driver's license issued by the State of: Minnesota

    In 1998 I got a dui in MN, I went to court in Feb. 1999...I received a conviction for a dwi. I had to attend driving school, MADD, community service and for two weeks 3 times a day breath into a machine. Never during any of that time, Feb. 1999 - March 1999 completed, did I receive a notice stating my license had been suspended for the DWI. In Jan. 2000 my mother died and I had to move back home, another state, with my family...I was 21 to 22 years of age during this time. I made sure with my unsupervised probation that I was good to move and I got the go ahead. My fees were being paid monthly but when my mother died my world kinda went downwards and I couldn't pay the fine, after one month of being late the court, in feb. 2000, issued a suspension of my license. I paid all fines owed to court Aug. 27th 2001 and they sent the reinstatement to dmv May 2007.

    Now because I had moved to another state, I am pretty sure that that is why I didn't receive that notice of suspension. But because I didn't receive that notice I never knew it was suspended. That same year I went to the DMV in the state I was living in and I got my license. I have had that license since and never once was told it was suspended. I now live in California and my license has expired, I went to the dmv here and they told me it was suspended...15 years later I was finally made aware of the suspension. I called MN dmv to find out the cost to get my license and they are telling me I have to pay the whopping $680 reinstatement, but according to the court records it was suspended for failure to pay court fees which should only cost $30 to reinstate and should have been reinstated as soon as I paid the fine off in 2001.

    I am so confused on when and why the license was actually suspended and now have bigger issues because I have kids now and I need to drive to work and schools and I can't. For 15 years I had no idea that it was suspended and now I can't drive. I have had nothing on my driving record before or after that dui, no speeding tickets, no traffic violations, nothing and now I have to pay a disgustingly high reinstatement fee to a state I never had a license in and never told me my privilege to get one was suspended. I do not understand why I have to pay that high of a fee when it wasn't suspended for the DWI...I lived at the same address after conviction for a year, that is plenty of time to send me a notice that it was suspended and I never received one. Do I have any options here? Will CA pick this up and let me at least get a restricted, if I have to pay the fine, until I can get the fine paid off? Please someone tell me something I am so confused!!

    Quote Quoting copy of court record
    Case Type: Moving - Misdemeanor
    Date Filed: 02/05/1999

    02/05/1999 FLD-Case Filed (Judicial Officer: Judge, Presiding )
    02/05/1999 SCH-Schedule Hearing (Judicial Officer: Judge, Presiding )
    02/08/1999 Arraignment (8:00 AM) (Judicial Officer Arraignment, Duluth Judge) Result: Converted Activity Status Flag Cancelled
    02/16/1999 Arraignment (8:00 AM) (Judicial Officer Arraignment, Duluth Judge) Result: Converted Activity Status Flag Cancelled
    02/22/1999 Arraignment (9:20 AM) (Judicial Officer Sullivan,David P. ,) Result: Converted Activity Status Flag Occurred
    05/01/2000 DEL-Deliquent Time Payment Notice (Judicial Officer: Judge, Presiding )
    05/16/2000 SUS-Drivers License Suspended (Judicial Officer: Judge, Presiding )
    02/22/2006 Converted Pending Activity (Judicial Officer: Judge, Presiding )
    01/31/2007 DL reinstatement request sent to DPS

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: Was My License Suspended for a DWI Conviction or Failure to Pay Court Fees

    your post is confusing

    which state suspended your license and which state is requiring you to pay the $680 fee to reinstate your license?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Behind a Desk

    Default Re: Was My License Suspended for a DWI Conviction or Failure to Pay Court Fees

    There are two different types of driver's license suspension: A judicial suspension and an administrative suspension. The judge can suspend your license as a penalty for your offense, or for your noncompliance with probation, and can lift that judicial suspension upon your satisfaction of the terms of your suspension. However, even if you pay off all of your court assessments, you will find that you will still owe a reinstatement fee in order to end the administrative suspension of your license. As far as I know, every state requires the payment of an administrative reinstatement fee following a driver's license suspension.

    It thus appears that although you took care of your criminal sentence, such that the judicial suspension of your license was resolved, you did not pay the reinstatement fee to the Minnesota DPS such that your driving privileges remained suspended. As you can see here, the reinstatement fee is presently $680, consistent with the amount you have been told that you owe.

    If you were represented by a public defender for your drunk driving charge, Minnesota offers a 'partial payment program' that could allow you to pay the reinstatement fee over two years (50% each year, plus an administrative fee of $25, which means $365 the first year and $340 the second year). You would need a court document or a letter from the public defender's office that confirms that you were represented by a public defender.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2010

    Default Re: Was My License Suspended for a DWI Conviction or Failure to Pay Court Fees

    Even if it was ONLY a judicial suspension, it's not reinstated until you pay the fee to the DMV and get it reissued.

    The problem was back when you first got your California license, they should NOT have issued it to you but the state-to-state communication wasn't what it is today.
    Follow the information Mr. K provided.

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