Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Frequently Asked Questions for the Drive Legal Program

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QHow did the Drive Legal Program begin? 
New laws and statutes are created and implemented, annually, which could potentially affect the amount of Driving While License Suspended and No Valid Driver’s License cases filed. In 1991, approximately 60,000 Driving While License Suspended violations, the largest portion of criminal traffic misdemeanor cases statewide, were filed in Miami-Dade County. At the direction of the Chief Judge, and with the complete support of the State Attorney, a committee was formed to address the sudden influx of cases, and recommended a Comprehensive Driving While License Suspended Diversion/Compliance program. On May 14, 1992, Administrative Order 93-09 was entered, permanently establishing the Drive Legal Program as a solution to the influx of violations and as a service whose primary goal is assisting the public with driver’s license restoration issues.
QWhat are traffic citations?

There are two types of traffic citations: Criminal traffic citations and civil infraction citations.

1. Criminal Traffic Citations

A Criminal traffic offense is a more serious offense, like Reckless Driving, Driving Under the Influence (DUI), or Driving on a Suspended License. These cases are heard in the Criminal Division of the Court and may be punishable with jail time. In any criminal case where you may face jail time you have a right to an attorney. If you can't afford one, the Court will appoint one to you.

2. Civil Infraction Traffic Citations

A civil infraction is a minor offense that is usually punishable with a fine, traffic school, or community service. It is not punishable by jail time. Civil infractions are separated into 2 categories: Moving violations and Non-moving violations. Moving violations occur when a traffic law is violated by a vehicle in movement. Points are assigned on these types of citations. If found guilty, the points are assessed to your license. Non-moving violations occur when a traffic law is violated by a vehicle not in motion. These types of violations do not carry points.

Examples of moving violations:

  • Speeding
  • Improper change of lane
  • Careless driving
  • Running a red light

Examples of non-moving violations:

  • Driving without proof of insurance for your vehicle
  • Car registration or driver’s license violations
  • Having broken equipment that needs repair
  • Seatbelt violations
QCan drive legal help me resolve cases in other counties?
No, the Drive Legal Program is unique to Miami-Dade County and is not offered in any other counties or states. Since jurisdiction lies within each county, the Program cannot resolve cases in other counties. Visit the Florida Clerks of Courts Contact List for information on citations issued in other counties. 
QCan I reinstate my license after I complete the Program?

If there are no additional outstanding suspensions, you may be eligible to reinstate your license. Additional outstanding suspension must be resolved before license reinstatement can occur. In an effort to assist participants in resolving other pending license issues, Drive Legal will identify any additional, outstanding suspensions a person may have at the time of program completion. This includes suspensions from other counties or from the Department of Motor Vehicles.

QHow are the Drive Legal’s Policies and Procedures determined?
Administrative Order 20-14 and Administrative Memorandum 19-1 establishes the Program’s policies and procedures. This document is revised by the Traffic Diversion Committee as needed.
QWhat are the Drive Legal’s Policies and Procedures?
The Drive Legal’s Policies and Procedures are accessible here.
QWhat community outreach events does the Program attend?

The Drive Legal Program partners with outside agencies to offer the opportunity for individuals to enter the Program and receive its benefits, such as:

  • Town Hall Meetings
  • Transition Fairs
  • Law Day
  • Local Government Outreach Events

Furthermore, promotional efforts include:

  • Radio Interviews
  • TV interviews
  • Law Day
  • Court Press Releases
QWhat agencies does the Program work with?

As a county court program, the Drive Legal Program partners with the following agencies:

  • State Attorney's Office
  • Public Defender's Office
  • Corrections
  • Clerk of Courts
  • Administrative Office of the Courts

Partnerships outside the justice system include agencies such as:

  • Court Options
  • Advocate Program
  • County sponsored program
  • Local nonprofit organizations
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