The 10 Most Common Ways to Get a Suspended License in Missouri

If you drive with a suspended license, fail to pay child support, or fail to have the proper insurance, you could face jail time in Missouri.
Written by Jacqulyn Graber
Reviewed by Jessa Claeys
Missouri driver’s license
can be suspended or revoked for a number of reasons, including DWI charges, failure to pay child support, and not having the right
Missouri car insurance policy
—among other things.
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What’s the difference between a license suspension and revocation?

You’ve probably heard the terms “license suspension” and “license revocation” used interchangeably. However, it’s important to know the difference between the terms. While they both limit your legal authority to drive, they can also mean different things.
  • If a license is suspended, usually it means that a person’s driving privileges are removed temporarily for a specific period of time.
  • If your license is revoked, however, your driving privileges have been removed indefinitely, likely for a serious offense.
Remember, the state of Missouri reserves the right to suspend or revoke your license for any reason. This can include a wide range of things like DWI charges, points on your license, or even failure to pay child support.
Keep in mind that, while your license is suspended, you may be able to apply for a hardship license before your official driver’s license reinstatement date. This might include limited driving privileges or installing an ignition interlock device in your vehicle, depending on the initial reasons for license suspension. 

What can your license be suspended for in Missouri? 

1. Accumulation of points

In Missouri, if you accumulate eight moving violation points (from violations such as
speeding tickets
) on your license within 18 months, your license will be suspended for 30 days for a first-time offense, 60 days for a second-time offense, and up to 90 days for a third offense.
If you earn more than 18 points within 24 months or 24 points within 36 months, your license will be revoked for a one-year period, and you will have to re-apply for a new license in person.

2. Failure to appear in court for a traffic violation

If you fail to make a mandatory court-ordered appearance in the state of Missouri, your ability to legally operate a motor vehicle could be suspended. Upon failing to attend your mandatory court date, it is best to contact a law firm for legal advice regarding how to move forward. 
Failure to appear will result in a warrant for your arrest and additional fines and fees. If you fail to appear in court after a criminal charge, you can be charged with bail jumping—a Class A misdemeanor.

3. Driving while intoxicated (DWI)

This one is a serious no-no. If you receive a
DWI conviction in Missouri
, which means that your blood alcohol content (BAC) is above the legal limit while you’re behind the wheel, you will face a 90-day suspension for a first-time offense. 
For a second offense, you will receive a revocation of one year, a third offense will land you a 5-year license revocation, and a fourth offense will result in a 10-year revocation. Fines and jail time are also typically associated with drunk driving. 

4. Abuse and lose policies

Per Missouri law, if you’re under 21 and you fail an alcohol or drug test and are convicted of use and possession violations, the court may order your license to be suspended for up to 90 days for a first-time offense or revoked for up to one year for any subsequent offenses.
If you’re found guilty of a second offense that involves possession of alcohol or drugs and you were accompanied by someone under 18, anyone 21 years or older may have their license revoked for one year for possession and distribution of drugs or alcohol to minors.

5. Minor in possession/other alcohol offenses

Any person who is over 15 and under 21 years of age could face having their driving privileges suspended or revoked for 30 days for a first-time alcohol-related offense and 90 days for a second time. For any subsequent violations, you could face a license revocation of one year.

6. Out-of-state convictions

If the state of Missouri receives notification that you have any convictions outside the state, it will still land on your driving record. Depending on the violation, it may or may not lead to a possible license suspension.

7. Failure to maintain insurance

If you fail to meet
Missouri’s minimum car insurance requirements
, you may be let off the hook for your first offense. If you fail to obtain insurance by the second time, you could face having your license suspended for up to 90 days. For any offenses after that, you might face a suspension of up to one year.
Keep in mind that insurance companies will raise your rates if your license has been suspended. So if you’re trying to save money, it’s imperative to keep your policy up to date. Before you can reinstate your license, you’ll likely need to bring a
Missouri SR-22
form to your local driver’s license office (and meet all other requirements). 

8. Failure to provide proof of insurance

Much like if you fail to meet the minimum insurance requirements, if you are in an accident and fail to provide the right
proof of insurance coverage
, you could face a 90-day suspension for a second offense and up to a one-year revocation for a third or subsequent offense.

9. Failure to pay for damages you’re liable for

If you are considered at fault for an accident in Missouri, if you fail to pay the damages or come up with an agreement on time, your license and plates will be suspended for up to one year.
You’ll also have to pay a reinstatement fee to get your license back up and running, which means you’ll end up paying more money in the long run. 

10. Failure to pay child support

The Missouri Family Support Division (FSD) may order that an individual who has failed to pay child support’s license is suspended per the Missouri Department of Revenue. This typically occurs when an individual is not making payments and owes either $2,500 or an amount greater than or equal to 3 months of current support payments.

The bottom line

Driving is a privilege. Familiarize yourself with Missouri traffic laws and follow them diligently to hang onto your freedom to hit the road!
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