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

In Minnesota, your license could be suspended if you miss a court date, fail to pay a fine, drive under the influence, or use your license unlawfully.
Written by Samuel Todd
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Your license can be suspended in Minnesota for many reasons, such as missing a court date, failing to pay a traffic fine, or getting a DWI. If you’re caught driving with a suspended license, you could face thousands of dollars in fees and possible jail time, as well as an increase in the
cost of car insurance in Minnesota.
When you’re in the habit of slipping your wallet into your pocket and hopping behind the wheel, it’s easy to take your driver’s license for granted. If you aren’t careful, though, you could end up with a temporary license suspension—even if you don’t commit any serious offenses like drunk or reckless driving!
Fortunately, the
car insurance
comparison shopping app
has your back. We’ve looked through the laws, researched the cases, and compiled this handy list of common ways to get a suspended license in Minnesota. If you want to know what to avoid (and land yourself a killer insurance rate), read on. 
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What’s the difference between a license suspension and revocation?

They sound similar, and you might have even heard them used interchangeably, but suspension and revocation are two different things:
  • A suspension is a temporary loss of driving privileges, usually for 30 to 90 days
  • A revocation is a much longer—and sometimes permanent—loss of driving privileges, which will require you to reapply for your license
So, revocations are more severe than suspensions. While you can have your license suspended for a handful of minor violations, revocation usually takes something more serious, like fleeing from a police officer or driving faster than 100 mph

What can your license be suspended for in Minnesota?

Here’s a run-through of the most common reasons for license suspension in the Land of 10,000 Lakes:

1. If you fail to pay a fine

Though it doesn’t sound like a big deal, failing to pay a fine can have long-term consequences. If you receive a traffic ticket, you have to pay it by the due date listed on the ticket, using the proper procedure. If you don’t, your license will probably be suspended until you make the payment!

2. If you miss a court date

Here’s another less dramatic way to lose your license: say you get a speeding ticket and set a court date, but it slips your mind at the last minute. Even if you intended to show up, you could still face a license suspension.
If you’re supposed to make a court appearance, mark your calendar and set a reminder on your phone! That way, consequences won’t spiral out of control.

3. If you drive with a BAC of over 0.08

For your first
DWI in Minnesota
, your license will be revoked for 90 days. If your BAC was .16 or higher, the punishment period is increased to one year. Along the same lines, refusing to take a breath test will result in a suspension.

4. If you repeatedly violate traffic laws

Though Minnesota doesn’t use a point system, you can still lose your license if you are a
habitual violator of traffic laws
. If you accumulate too many moving violations, like speeding or running a red light, you might have to kiss your license goodbye for a few weeks or months.

5. If you are convicted of reckless driving or vehicular manslaughter

Two surefire ways to lose a license are
reckless driving
(weaving in and out of cars, road rage, etc.) and vehicular manslaughter (causing a crash that results in another person’s death). Both of these violations carry steep fines, license revocation, and often prison time.
If you flee the scene of the crash, your punishment will be even harsher—so be sure to
follow the necessary steps
after an accident.
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6. If you don’t pay child support

It might seem unrelated to driving, but the
Minnesota Department of Human Services
can actually suspend your license if you don’t make child support payments. As long as you’re working with the court, a child support magistrate, or a child support office to make payments on time, you shouldn’t have to worry about losing your license.

7. If you committed certain out-of-state violations

If you commit a violation in Florida that doesn’t result in suspension under their law, you could still lose your license under Minnesota law! It’s best to be extra safe and avoid traffic violations, no matter which state you’re in.

8. If you use your license unlawfully

Minnesota will suspend your license if you use it for illegal purposes. For example, if you use a fake ID to get alcohol or use your real ID to buy alcohol for minors, you might have to give up your license.

9. If you don’t report a medical condition that would stop you from driving

Some medical conditions—such as epilepsy, cataracts, or a variety of neurological conditions—prevent you from driving. If you take to the streets even though you aren’t able to drive safely, your license will be suspended.

10. If you drive without Minnesota car insurance

Minnesota car insurance law
, you’ll lose your license for at least 30 days if you’re caught driving without insurance. If you violate the law more than twice, the suspension will jump to one year, your insurance rates will skyrocket, and you might be imprisoned—so make sure that your insurance is up to snuff before you hit the road.

How to save money on car insurance in Minnesota

In the Land of 10,000 Lakes (and what feels like 10,000 insurers), it can be nearly impossible to know which insurance company is giving you the best deal. Impossible, that is, unless you have Jerry!
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