As of July 1, 2014, Florida Statute 322.055 has been revised to reduce the period of driver license suspension from two (2) years to one (1) year in drug cases.
Before the statute change, Florida law required driver’s licenses to be suspended for two years for a drug conviction, including possession, sale, trafficking of a controlled substance. Many people did not realize that pleading guilty to a cocaine charge, for example, would not only cause a third degree felony conviction, but also a two year license suspension. Now, anyone convicted of drug charges is to have their license revoked for 1 year (or, if necessary, until the person is evaluated and completes a drug treatment and rehabilitation program). However, the court also has discretion to court to determine whether the defendant may apply for a restricted license (a license that is valid for business or employment purposes only). Further, after 6 months of the license being suspended, the driver may petition the DMV for restoration of the driving privilege on a restricted or unrestricted basis.
Casey Reiter is an associate attorney at Stuart R. Manoff & Associates, P.A. in West Palm Beach, Florida, practicing in the areas of Criminal Defense and Marital Law.