June 25, 2015 By Matthew Wallin
driving with a hold on your license
Have you been pulled over and cited for driving with a hold on our license?

If you have a hold on your license or registration due to an unpaid traffic ticket, the DMV will freeze your ability to renew your license and/or registration or make any other changes.

Hold on Your Driver’s License Due to Outstanding Traffic Tickets

If you’ve received a traffic ticket, chances are you were given a summons to appear in court as all traffic-related incidents are handled as a criminal matter in California. If you fail to appear, the court will place a hold on your license to force you to address the infraction. Though a traffic ticket may not seem like a big deal, failing to appear in court can quickly escalate the matter into something much worse.

Consequences of Driving While Having a License Hold (VC 40509.5)

If you have a hold on your license or registration, the DMV has the authority under Vehicle Code 40509.5 to suspend your privileges to drive until you lift your hold and pay your ticket.1

After a hold is placed on your license, the court will usually mail you notice of the hold instructing you to appear in court.2 If you fail to appear again, the DMV can suspend your license.3

Under VC 14601, you can be charged with a misdemeanor if you knowingly drive on a suspended license in California.4 You are also presumed to have notice of the suspension from the hold on your license and notices to appear. If this happens to you, the penalties increase substantially. That is why it is important that you deal with your traffic ticket in a serious manner and hire an experienced DUI attorney to help you.

Why You Should Hire an Attorney to Help You Remove the Hold

An experienced criminal lawyer will help you clear your license hold, driving record, avoid points on your driving record, and make sure that you are not charged or convicted of a more serious traffic crime that could carry serious penalties.

A lawyer can also help you save time and money by appearing in court for you and reducing the fines associated with your offense. If you’ve ignored your ticket and are now facing misdemeanor charges, a lawyer may be able to get the charges against you dismissed. In addition, hiring a lawyer shows the judge that you are serious about dealing with your ticket and are handling what they view as a serious matter in a responsible way.

Call the Skilled Traffic Attorneys at Wallin & Klarich

If you or a loved one has been charged or needs help avoiding any traffic-related crime you need to contact an experienced Wallin & Klarich criminal defense attorney immediately.

At Wallin & Klarich, our skilled attorneys have been successfully defending clients facing criminal charges for over 30 years. We will meet with you immediately to review the facts of your case and plan a defense strategy that will help you get the very best outcome possible.

With office locations in Los Angeles, Sherman Oaks, Torrance, Orange County, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, West Covina and Victorville, there is an experienced Wallin & Klarich criminal defense attorney available to help you no matter where you work or live.

Call us today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free phone consultation. We will be there when you call.

1. http://www.occourts.org/directory/collections/dmv-holds.html

2. Veh. Code, § 40509.5

3. http://duiandtrafficattorney.com/40509-5-hold-due-to-a-traffic-ticket-learn-how-to-clear-your-drivers-license/

4. Veh. Code, § 14601

Your Answer


  1. If you jave a failure to pay hold on your driving license can you move to another state and be issued a driver’s license?

    1. Hi Cynthia,

      The Interstate Driver’s License Compact is an agreement between many of the states in the U.S. This could make it difficult to get your license in any state if you have a hold your license in another. Contact our law firm at (877) 466-5245 so we can discuss your options for reinstating your driving privileges in California.

      Thank you

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