AUO Penalties and Sentencing
Many people do not realize that in New York, driving with a suspended or revoked license may be a criminal offense carrying serious penalties. If you have been charged with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle (AUO), a Westchester County suspended license attorney can help you defend against a conviction. At Tilem & Associates, we work tirelessly to minimize the consequences in AUO cases and can provide the legal guidance you need.AUO Penalties and Sentencing
Under the New York Vehicle and Traffic Law, it is a crime to operate a motor vehicle on a public road if you are aware, or have reason to be aware, that your driver license has been revoked, suspended, or otherwise made unavailable by the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles. If you are convicted of an AUO offense, you may face jail time, probation, and/or hefty fines. The severity of the sentence will depend on the degree of the offense, your criminal record, and other factors. The penalties for each degree of an AUO offense are described below.AUO in the Third Degree
If no aggravating factors are alleged, the offense you will be charged with for unlicensed operation is an AUO in the third degree. AUO in the third degree is a misdemeanor offense, punishable by a minimum fine of $200 to $500, or a maximum of 30 days in prison, or both a fine and imprisonment. If the person convicted of AUO in the third degree was driving a motor vehicle with a gross weight rating of over 18,000 pounds, the punishment may be increased. The court may impose a fine between $500 and $1,500, or a term of imprisonment not to exceed 30 days, or both a fine and imprisonment.AUO in the Second Degree
For some defendants, the circumstances of the offense may lead to a more serious charge and corresponding AUO penalties and sentencing. If you were previously convicted of an AUO offense within the last 18 months, the offense may be charged as an AUO in the second degree. An AUO in the second degree is still a misdemeanor offense, but carries harsher penalties. For a second AUO within 18 months, the court must impose a fine of at least $500 and a term of either probation or imprisonment for up to 180 days. The judge may order you to participate in a drug or alcohol treatment program as a condition of probation.
In some cases, a conviction for AUO in the second degree carries greater penalties. If your license suspension or revocation was due to a drug- or alcohol-related driving offense or DUI refusal, a conviction could result in a fine of between $500 and $1,000, and a minimum sentence of seven days in prison or probation and/or a treatment program. These penalties may also apply if the license suspension in effect was your third or subsequent suspension for failing to answer, appear, or pay a traffic ticket.AUO in the First Degree
AUO in the first degree is a class E felony. Often, an AUO in the first degree is charged for drunk driving with a suspended or revoked license, but there are several other circumstances covered under the statute. If you are convicted of AUO in the first degree, you are considered a felon and may lose some of your civil rights. You are also subject to criminal penalties that may include a fine of at least $500 up to $5,000, and one to four years of probation or imprisonment, and/or a treatment program.Consult a Westchester County Attorney Regarding AUO Penalties and Sentencing
At Tilem & Associates, our Westchester County lawyers have successfully represented defendants in AUO cases and many other criminal proceedings. We assist individuals throughout Bronx, Queens, Kings, Nassau, Suffolk, Rockland, Richmond, and Putnam Counties. Discuss a license suspension, drunk driving, or drug charge in a free consultation with one of our hardworking defense attorneys. Schedule your appointment today by calling Tilem & Associates at 877-377-8666 or contacting us online.