There are two types of drivers licence suspensions in Ontario;
- Licence suspensions – Highway Traffic Act
- Licence prohibitions – Criminal Code of Canada
There are two types of drivers licence suspensions in Ontario;
Licence suspensions under the Ontario Highway Traffic Act are suspensions under provincial traffic law.
These suspensions are usually as the result of:
Licence suspensions under the Highway Traffic Act are usually for six (6) months. In the case of unpaid fines, medical, accident claims and family responsibilities the suspension ends when the issue is corrected.
Should a driver be charged with driving while suspended under the Highway Traffic Act the penalties can be:
Drivers do not receive a criminal record for driving under suspension under the Highway Traffic Act.
Criminal licence suspensions fall under two categories;
Mandatory criminal licence suspensions are driver licence suspensions that are dictated by the Criminal Code of Canada.
The judge or court has no control over the suspension and there is no appeal or dispute process. The driver must not drive during the licence prohibition period.
Court ordered suspensions are additional suspensions ordered by a judge.
The judge has discretion as to whether to apply the suspension but the licence suspension is in addition to any mandatory suspension of the licence.
Under the Highway Traffic Act of Ontario your licence will be suspended immediately for ninety (90) days under the Administrative Drivers Licence Suspension (ADLS) when;
This suspension takes effect while you are still at the roadside or at the police station. It is an administrative suspension and is separate from any criminal charges or prosecution that may also take place.
An administrative monetary penalty is also imposed on drivers who receive an ADLS of a one hundred and eighty (180) dollar licence reinstatement fee.
Where a driver has been charged with a drinking and driving offence and after the ninety (90) days have past the driver can get their drivers licence back while awaiting trial.
Drivers will receive a one-year licence suspension the first time they are convicted of a Criminal Code offence.
Convictions will remain on your driver’s record/abstract for a minimum of ten (10) years.
The court can order a longer suspension if it believes that keeping you off the road will improve safety.
The licence will be suspended if a driver is convicted of any of the following Criminal Code offences:
Drivers licence prohibitions for Criminal Code of Canada offences are kept on the driving record/abstract for ten (10) years.
For drivers who repeatedly blow in the warn range of .05 to .08, there is a mandatory alcohol education for a second suspension, which must be completed within 120 days of the suspension, or an alcohol-treatment program for a third or subsequent suspension.
A driver improvement interview is required for drivers convicted of non-impaired driving-related Criminal Code offences.
If your driver’s licence has been suspended because of a Criminal Code conviction, your licence will remain suspended until any remedial requirements have been completed.
If it is your first conviction, you may be eligible to participate in the Reduced Suspension with Ignition Interlock Conduct Review Program.
This program will allow eligible drivers to reduce their licence suspension in return for meeting specific requirements, such as the mandatory installation of an approved ignition interlock device in their vehicle. Please contact us to discuss this option.
Nick, Just want to let you know, I just completed the Back on Track assessment in Barrie and am doing the one day course in Toronto on Thursday. So I will be good to drive come October 28. Both the Back on Track in Barrie and Toronto, were shocked at the fact that you got my licence back so soon on a second offence. The both said they had never seen that before… Thanks Again! Nathan B. Toronto
An ignition interlock device is an in-car, breath-screening device.
It prevents a vehicle from starting if a blood-alcohol concentration is over a pre-set limit of 20 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood (.02).
If you are convicted of an impaired driving offence under the Criminal Code of Canada, your licence can be reinstated:
You will be eligible to have your driver’s licence back. At that time:
If you choose not to install a device, you must not drive until the condition is removed from your licence.
Drivers caught without a required ignition interlock device will have their cars impounded for seven days. If you are required to complete a road test while the ignition interlock condition is on your licence, you must complete a road test in a vehicle equipped with the device.
Once completed you must apply to the Ministry of Transportation to have the condition removed from your licence. If you do not apply for removal of the licence condition, it will remain on your licence indefinitely.
If you have completed the minimum period (one year or three years) without any program violations such as tampering or driving without an appointment with the service provider, the ignition interlock condition will be removed.
As a vehicle owner, you must not allow a person with an ignition interlock condition to drive your vehicle or you could be convicted of an offence under the Highway Traffic Act. You can find out if a driver has an ignition interlock condition on his or her licence by accessing MTO’s website at www.mto.gov.on.ca or by calling 1-900-565-6555. There is a fee for each licence check.
If your driver’s licence has been suspended for driving in the warn range of .05 to .08 for a third or subsequent time in a five-year period, you will also have an ignition interlock licence condition placed on your licence for 6 months. More information on the Program is available on the MTO website.
The Ontario government believes drivers who register a blood-alcohol concentration in the “warn range” of .05 to .08 pose an immediate danger to themselves, other drivers and the public. If caught driving in the warn range, drivers receive an immediate driver’s licence suspension at the roadside:
An administrative monetary penalty is also imposed on drivers suspended for registering in the warn range.
All drivers who are 21 years of age and under, regardless of licence class, must have a blood alcohol concentration level of zero when operating a motor vehicle.
Where a novice driver and is caught with any amount of alcohol in their blood, they will receive an immediate 24-hour roadside driver licence suspension and, if convicted, could face a fine of up to $500 and a thirty (30) day licence suspension under the novice driver escalating sanctions program.
Fully licensed drivers who are 21 years and under and are caught with alcohol in their blood, will receive a 24-hour roadside driver licence suspension, plus a charge under the Highway Traffic Act. If convicted, the driver will receive a fine and a 30-day licence suspension.
Doctors are required by law to report the names and addresses of everyone 16 years or older who has a condition that may affect their ability to drive safely.
For example, if the driver has an addiction to alcohol or drugs that affect their ability to drive, a Doctor shall report this information to the Ministry of Transportation.
The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) will suspend the drivers licence until new medical evidence shows that the physical condition or dependency does not pose a safety risk to themselves or other drivers.
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