Last week, I (Attorney Ryan McAllister) represented a client charged with 75 Pa.C.S.A. 1543(a), driving while operating privilege is suspended or revoked, and 75 Pa.C.S.A. 3112(a)(3)(ii), traffic control signals. My client was facing a one-year suspension of her driving privileges if she was convicted of 75 Pa.C.S.A. 1543(a), as well as three (3) points on her driving record if she was convicted of 75 Pa.C.S.A. 3112(a)(3)(ii). My client works full-time and has a significant commute to her job; therefore, she could not afford any convictions that would negatively impact her driving privileges.
After being retained by my client, I ordered a copy of her full-driving record from PennDOT. Upon examining her driving record, it was apparent to me that the reason for my client being charged with “driving while operating privilege is suspended or revoked” was primarily due to a prior paperwork misunderstanding between PennDOT and my client. It seems that my client initially had her license suspended by PennDOT due to a previous conviction for a traffic citation. My client filed a pro se appeal in that case, which temporarily stayed the suspension of her driving privileges for a period of six (6) months. However, under current Pennsylvania state law, PennDOT re-instated the suspension of my client’s driving privileges after the six (6) months had gone by, even though my client’s appeal was still pending. It was clear that my client was not aware her driving privileges were suspended
Therefore, on the day of the trial, I presented the complicated driving history to the officer who had issued the citations to my client. After presenting the situation to the Judge, I was able to secure a not guilty verdict on the citation for 75 Pa.C.S.A. 1543(a), which saved my client from an additional one-year suspension of her driving privileges. Also, the officer was willing to amend the remaining citation, 75 Pa.C.S.A. 3112(a)(3(ii), to 75 Pa.C.S.A. 3111(a), traffic control signals, which carries zero (0) points.
Initially, my client was facing a one-year suspension of her driving privileges and three (3) points on her driving record, not to mention nearly a thousand dollars in mandatory fines and court costs. In the end, however, my client only convicted of one (1) minor traffic violation and sentenced to pay fines and costs totaling $117.50. She received no license suspension and no points on her driving record.
If you have a traffic case in Berks County, Pennsylvania, or Reading, Pennsylvania, please contact the office at 610-372-5128 to setup a free consultation. I (Attorney Ryan McAllister) will be happy to meet with you and discuss possible defenses to your case.