The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles is preparing to send letters to Virginians whose driving privileges are suspended for failure to pay court fines and costs to advise them of any specific requirements for obtaining their driver’s licenses back.
Gov. Ralph Northam’s budget includes a provision that prohibits courts from suspending driving privileges solely for failure to pay court fines and costs, effective July 1, 2019. Any Virginian whose driver’s license has been suspended for that single reason will have his or her driving privileges restored, and the associated reinstatement fee waived.
There are as many as 13,000 people in Prince William and Fauquier counties and Manassas and Manassas Park affected. The bulk of them, about 10,000, live in Prince William.
The change only affects a person’s ability to get his or her driver’s license. It does not eliminate the requirement to pay the underlying court costs and fines. Additionally, Virginians whose driving privileges are suspended or revoked for other reasons, in addition to failure to pay court fines and costs, will need to meet any other court or DMV requirements to include payment of reinstatement fees to regain their driving privileges.
Since DMV offices are expected to be busy this summer, customers are encouraged to use alternative services such as the website, dmvNOW.com, mail, and DMV Select locations for routine services.
“Virginians who still have their physical unexpired license and have proof of legal presence on file with DMV will be reinstated July 1 and can go about driving without coming to DMV for a new license,” said DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb. “There are other customers whose licenses have expired or need to meet other statutory requirements to get their licenses. The letters those customers will receive will outline all of those requirements. So, the most important thing Virginians can do right now is to visit dmvNOW.com to make sure your mailing address is up-to-date with DMV so you receive this important information.”