Virginia License Suspension Forgiveness – For now, a temporary reprieve.

This year Virginia has seen a change in how it handles license suspension. There have been many articles and news outlets stating that through a budget amendment effective July 1, 2019 Virginia law changed to prohibit courts from suspending a person’s driver’s license due to failure to pay court fines and costs. This statement is technically true. The budget amendment was passed in reaction to a federal law suit challenging the constitutionality of the suspension – but the move is currently only temporary -the law itself has not been fully repealed.

As such, the important thing for Virginia drivers to understand is that as of now, this is only a temporary reprieve to license holders: under the current budget amendment language the licenses will be restored through July 1, 2020.  This deadline potentially could be extended by another budget amendment, in the case of a permanent injunction issued in federal court or if the Virginia General Assembly passes a full repeal bill.

Under the current system, over 600,000 Virginians with suspended licenses should have automatically had the ability to follow DMV procedure to have their driving privileges restored without the need to pay the traditional DMV license reinstatement fees – if their license was suspended solely for court related debt. If you are unsure why your license was suspended, you can request a compliance summary report from Virginia DMV.

It is also important to remember that this reprieve does not include license suspensions due to other reasons, including unpaid child support or drug related charges.

If you have been involved in a court case that has resulted in a suspended license or have been involved in a traffic or criminal charge, Winslow & McCurry would like to help. Please call (804)423-1382 or email us at to set up a consultation with one of our attorneys.