What is driving while prohibited?
Driving while prohibited is simply that: you’ve been prohibited, or told you’re not allowed, to drive and you do drive. There are two types of prohibitions in British Columbia : prohibitions from a criminal court and prohibitions from the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles. If you drive while you’re prohibited (either by a criminal court or by a superintendent’s prohibition), you can be criminally charged.
The Court Process
If you are charged, the police officer charging you will give you papers with a court date on them. That court date is called a “First Appearance”. At that appearance, the court will give you a package of papers pertaining to your case and will ask you if you have a lawyer. You can go through the justice system without a lawyer; it is easier, however to have a lawyer and you will not miss any work other than the day of trial.
The next court date is called an “Arraignment”. At that time the court will ask you if you want to plead guilty or not guilty.
DO NOT PLEAD GUILTY WITHOUT ADVICE FROM A LAWYER! CALL OUR TOLL FREE NUMBER NOW FOR YOUR FREE CONSULTATION 1-877-30HELPS (1-877-304-3577).
The penalty for Driving While Prohibited is the same whether you plead guilty before or after a trial: the court MUST impose a $1000 fine and a further one year driving prohibition. That’s a mandatory minimum sentence that Parliament has decided judges must impose. If you plead “not guilty” the court will then set a trial date. This trial date can be up to 2 years away.( If your prohibition ends before the trial date, you can apply to Driver’s Services to get your licence back.)
At trial, Crown has to prove that you were the driver of the vehicle, when you drove and where, and that you knew you were prohibited. The Crown usually do this through the testimony of the police officer , who is usually the only witness. You or your lawyer will have a chance to cross examine the officer. The Crown also tenders a document from the Superintendent telling the court you were prohibited.
THERE ARE STRICT RULES FOR GETTING THE COURT TO CONSIDER THIS DOCUMENT. You should talk to a lawyer about whether the Crown can even get the court to look at this document before you go to trial!
CALL OUR TOLL FREE NUMBER NOW FOR YOUR FREE CONSULTATION 1-877-30HELPS (1-877-304-3577).