Driving with a suspended license in Ontario is known in the court system as Driving While Disqualified and is identified in the Criminal Code of Canada as a federal crime.
A driving suspension may have occurred from a previous charge of:
- Impaired driving, or refusing to give a breath sample
- Dangerous driving/ stunt driving /exceeding 50km per hour over limit
- Fleeing the scene of an accident (hit & run)
- Fleeing police
- Exceeding 15 demerit points on a licence
- Failure to pay parking fees, speeding tickets or other fines
You Cannot Drive Any Motor Vehicle While Your Licence Is Under Suspension
While under suspension, an individual is prohibited from operating any motorized vehicle anywhere in Canada. This includes any vehicle that has a gas or electrically powered engine, such as a car, truck, bus, motorcycle, tractor, taxi, trailer, motorcycle, snowmobile, aircraft, vessel, railway, or even heavy equipment or machinery, whether in public or on private property.
If someone is caught driving with a suspended license, they can be arrested, charged, and held in custody, with the operated vehicle being impounded. The individual may be required to appear in a Provincial Court before a judge, to have what is called a “show cause hearing” before they can be released from custody.
As the accused disobeyed a judges order, which is considered a serious offence, the penalty may result in a period of time incarcerated in prison for up to two (2) years, and a criminal record. Other penalties could involve another year suspension and fines up to $2000.
The Criminal Code of Canada Regarding Driving Suspended States:
259(4) Operation while disqualified
(4) Every one who operates a motor vehicle, vessel or aircraft or any railway equipment in Canada while disqualified from doing so
(a) is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years; or
(b) is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.
259(5) Definition of “disqualification”
(5) For the purposes of this section, “disqualification” means
(a) a prohibition from operating a motor vehicle, vessel or aircraft or any railway equipment ordered pursuant to subsection (1) or (2); or (b) a disqualification or any other form of legal restriction of the right or privilege to operate a motor vehicle, vessel or aircraft imposed
(i) in the case of a motor vehicle, under the law of a province, or
(ii) in the case of a vessel or an aircraft, under an Act of Parliament, in respect of a conviction or discharge under section 736 of any offence referred to in subsection (1) or (2).
Driving with a suspended license in Ontario is A Crime.
As a Suspended Driving charge is not just considered a motor vehicle infraction, but a crime, this will gain you a criminal record, also causing your insurance rates to skyrocket if not your policy revoked altogether. This being the case, you have a lot more riding on the outcome of a trial. Attempting to defend yourself without the experience and solid knowledge of the laws regarding could leave you in a precarious and restrictive situation.
Our law team of Bruce Karten & Stephen Hebscher have over 60+ years of experience in acquiring reduced charges, acquittals & settlements that can work to achieve a favourable outcome. Speak to one of our lawyers to set up a free consultation. We have been able to assist countless individuals with overcoming a suspended driving conviction and acquiring licence reinstatements quicker in Toronto, and are available to assist you 24/7. See what our other clients are saying about us. We can help you too!
I came to Stephen Hebscher with a somewhat irregular case. Both my spouse and I had been mutually charged with domestic assault, a legal situation that neither of us had wished upon each other. While my spouse's lawyer had been content to seek mutually binding peace bonds, Stephen was able to get in front of the case and negotiate a withdrawal of both of our charges- the best possible outcome on BOTH sides of the table – once we successfully completing the PARs program. I remain entirely pleased with Stephen's competency, professionalism and accessibility, and would not hesitate to recommend him as a criminal defence lawyer. L.A.
Mr. Hebscher: I would like to thank you for your excellent representation of me in relation to the domestic assault charges that you worked so hard to have withdrawn. You have made a critical difference in my future and I am very happy with the outcome. I also appreciate your hard work, and the extra time and effort you have put in to deal with all the other issues that came along. I thank you for being a phone call away (or email) even when you did not have to be. I will gladly recommend your services to any of my friends or family should they ever need it. I am very grateful for what you have done.
I am impressed especially after our meeting on Monday – I was resigned that something bad would befall me, so I am very blessed to have this outcome. I thank you for the hard work that you have put into this case, and the dedication on getting me this fantastic outcome! I am so glad that we retained you as my lawyer! You have done an outstanding job and allowed me to now rebuild my life. Thank you, Bruce Karten.
Dave B. (Ajax, Ontario)
We were referred to Stephen Hebscher when our child was in need of legal representation. He was charged with sexual assault. As parents, we were quite frightened for our child but Mr. Hebscher was the calm voice of reason. We are very grateful to Mr. Hebscher for the excellent results he got for our child, as the charges were dropped.
J.N. (Toronto, Ontario)
Mr. Hebscher is a very professional lawyer who takes pride in his work and because of this the end result was the judge ruling me not guilty and I got my innocence and life back. My family and I would like to thank you again Stephen Hebscher for doing a wonderful job and also being a very supportive man.
Chris T. (Scarborough, Ontario)
I am happy to report that Bruce’s superior negotiation strategy and ability to present facts effectively helped convince the Crown to reduce his position. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Bruce for getting my charge withdrawn and keep my criminal record clean.
J.S (Toronto, Ontario)
I looked and found Barrister Stephen Hebscher I introduced myself and my case and after listening to all details he was able to ensure me that my case would go well. All charges against me have be thrown out and my life is back to normal.
Blair H. (North York)
Bruce ...The care and concern you showed us during our dealings certainly helped to reduce the stress we were under. I would recommend you without a second thought. Your winning record is a bonus as well. My husband and myself can't thank you enough for all you've done for our family.
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Dear Mr. Hebscher...There are not enough words to express my appreciation for your...giving me your undivided attention at all times, work in my case with your heart and soul, that makes you "ONE OF A KIND" lawyer.
Ahmed A. (Brampton, Ontario)
Mr. Bruce Karten was able to help to extricate me from a very serious criminal case containing severe charges, including weapons –threat to use weapons, death threat, harassment,etc. He succeeded in winning my case. I was discharged; was able to keep my career, and no criminal record. This was a tremendous accomplishment, and I am very appreciative of that.
Nickolai V. (Toronto, Ontario)
Again, from the depth of our hearts we sincerely thank you very much for being my Counsel on this case. We now can say you are the BEST and we will surely recommend you to our friends and anybody here we know who needs the best Lawyer in Ontario. You have done an extremely good job and we are very happy with the outcome this morning.
Roman A. (Markham, Ontario)
Mr. Hebscher was the only lawyer who gave me hope and made me feel like I had a real fighting chance. I am extremely satisfied with the quick results that he delivered, and I am happy to say that he was able to convince the court to drop the charges against me and clear my name.
Tina M. (Toronto, Ontario)