Former Traffic Court Judge Serving New York and New Jersey

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Can non-residents have their licenses suspended in New York?

Millions of people travel to Manhattan every year. If these visitors elect to drive while in the city, they need to abide by the local traffic laws. Violations of these laws may result in the suspension or revocation of driving privileges in New York State.

According to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles, non-resident drivers are subject to the same regulations as in-state drivers. Violations which may incur suspensions or revocations include the following:

  • Alcohol or drug intoxication
  • Homicide, criminal negligence or assault while operating a motor vehicle
  • Speeding
  • Leaving the scene after a fatal motor vehicle accident
  • Driving without car insurance

The duration of a suspension or revocation will depend on the traffic violation. New York laws establish minimum durations, but these may be exceeded, depending on the situation.

Restoring non-resident driving privileges after a suspension or revocation requires a written request. These requests must be submitted to the NYSDMV’s Driver Improvement Bureau.

Requestors must include a $25 reapplication fee with their submitted requests. Other monetary penalties may also apply. For example, if a license holder did not have car insurance or refused to submit to a chemical test, that person may need to pay additional charges.

Although often discussed together, suspensions and revocations are not the same. A driver license suspension means that the driver’s license still exists, but that the holder’s ability to use that privilege is taken away. Revocations, on the other hand, terminate a person’s license altogether. Reinstatement of driving privileges after a revocation requires obtaining an entirely new license. These distinctions may be important when attempting to reinstate driving privileges.

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