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Driver License Suspension in Washington
If your Washington driver’s license was suspended by the Department of Licensing (DOL), you’ll need to complete your suspension requirements and pay your fees before you can reinstate your license.
Your Washington driver’s license may be suspended for reasons that include:
- DUI arrests and convictions.
- Reckless driving.
- Failing to appear in court or pay fines.
- Violating insurance laws.
- Felonies committed in a vehicle.
- Excess driving record points.
On this page, you’ll find information about your suspensions and how to reinstate your license.
The suspension terms and reinstatement requirements of your WA driver’s license will vary depending on your violation or conviction.
The Washington DOL can suspend your driver’s license:
- After receiving notice of convictions from a court.
- For administrative actions.
You can face suspensions from both the Washington DOL and from criminal convictions, such as:
- 60 days if you receive 6 moving violations within 12 months.
- 90 days to 4 years if you are convicted of a DUI.
- 90 days to 2 years if you’re arrested for a DUI.
- 30 days if you are convicted of reckless driving.
Check Your Driver’s License Status
It is important to keep track of your driving record, as accumulating too many points may lead to a suspended license in Washington.
Your driver’s license will be first placed on probation; then, if you violate the terms of your probation, it will be suspended.
You will be placed on a 1-year probation if you receive:
- 4 moving violations within 12 months.
- 5 moving violations within 24 months.
If you receive 2 moving violations during your probation, you will receive a 30-day suspension and another year of probation.
If you receive 1 moving violation during your additional probation period, your driver’s license will be suspended for 60 days, 120 days, or 364 days, depending on the number of suspensions you’ve had.
You can keep track of your moving violations and driving record points by ordering your Washington DOL driving record.
NOTE: You can also check your driver license status on the Washington DMV website.Lower Your Driving Record Points and Dismiss Traffic Tickets
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If you want to contest your suspended license, you can request an administrative hearing with the Washington DOL.
You’ll need to request an administrative hearing within either 15 days or 20 days depending on the reason for your suspension.
If you are not a habitual traffic offender and are not requesting a hearing for a DUI suspension, there will be no fee for a hearing. Just complete the hearing request you received with your suspension notice and send it to the address specified on the form.
NOTE: Washington DOL administrative hearings have no affect on court convictions.
For more information on requesting a hearing with the WA DOL, visit the website.
To request a hearing for a license suspension caused by a DUI/DWI arrest, you’ll need:
- To complete a:
- Payment for the $375 DUI hearing request fee. *
* This fee may be waived if you’re classified as indigent. You will need to complete the Application for DUI Indigent Waiver and return it (along with any required documents) to the address specified on the form.
Habitual Traffic Offenders
If you are identified as a habitual traffic offender, complete a Habitual Traffic Offender Hearing Request (Form HRNG-525-006) and mail or fax it to the details specified on the form.
Appeal Your Hearing Decision
If you’ve had your Washington DOL hearing and would like to appeal the decision, you’ll need:
- To submit your appeal within 30 days to the superior court in the county where you were arrested.
- Payment for the $40 administrative record preparation fee.
Mail your payment and notice of appeal to:
Hearings and Interviews Unit
Department of Licensing
PO Box 9048
Olympia, WA 98507-9048Looking for a DUI Attorney?
Find an attorney to help you with your DUI license suspension.
The steps to reinstate your drivers license will vary depending on the circumstances of your suspension.
For specific steps to reinstate your suspended driver’s license, visit the Washington Department of Licensing website and:
- Provide your:
- Full name.
- Date of birth.
- Driver’s license number.
- Eye color (as shown on your driver’s license).
- Choose whether or not you have a Social Security number (SSN).
In some cases, to reinstate your suspended license you’ll need to:
Has your car insurance premium gone up with your suspended license?
- Satisfy your court requirements and fines, if applicable.
- Maintain proof of insurance for at least 3 years from your reinstatement with an SR22 from your insurance company, a deposit with the WA State Treasurer, or a security bond.
- Pay a licensing and reinstatement fee. (See “Fees to Reinstate Your WA Driver’s License” below.)
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While your driver's license is suspended, you may be eligible for an:
- Occupational/restricted license (ORL), if your license was suspended for non-drug/alcohol-related offenses.
- Ignition interlock license (IIL), if your license was suspended for drug or alcohol-related offenses.
NOTE: You must send in all necessary documents to the WA DOL within 30 days, otherwise your fee will be forfeited and your application will be denied.
To apply for an ORL or IIL, you’ll need:
- Proof of your financial responsibility, such as an SR22 from your insurance company.
- A completed Restricted Driver License Application (Form DR-500-001).
- To install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle(s), if you are applying for an IIL.
- The installer will notify the WA DOL.
- Payment for the $100 application fee.
Submit the above in person at your local WA DOL office OR mail it to:
Restricted Driver License
Department of Licensing
PO Box 3907
Seattle, WA 98124-3907
Request a Hearing for a Denied Application
If your application is denied, you can request a hearing by:
- Completing the DOL hearing request form provided with your denial notice.
- Mailing a letter requesting a hearing to:
Hearings and Interviews
Department of Licensing
PO Box 9031
Olympia, WA 98507-9031
Below are general license reinstatement/restricted license fees charged by the Washington DOL. Your fees and fines may vary depending on the circumstances of your suspension.
NOTE: You will also need to pay any associated court fees/fines.
- Licensing fee: $54.
- Non-alcohol-related suspension reinstatement: $75.
- Alcohol-related suspensions reinstatement: $150.
- Application: $100.
- Probationary license following DUI conviction/deferred prosecution: $50.
- Monthly ignition interlock device fee: $20.
Administrative DUI Hearing: $375.
Accepted Forms of Payment
The Washington Department of Licensing accepts the following forms of payment for reinstatement/restricted license transactions:
- Online: VISA, MasterCard, and American Express credit/debit card.
- By mail: Check or money order payable to “Department of Licensing.”
- In person:
- Money order.
- MasterCard, American Express, and some VISA credit/debit cards. *
* Credit/debit card transactions made in person will include a convenience fee. Credit/debit cards are not accepted at the following Washington DOL offices:
- Coulee Dam.
- Friday Harbor.
- South Bend.
Commercial drivers license (CDL) suspensions and disqualifications are regulated by both Washington state and federal law.
The Washington DOL will suspend your CDL for reasons including:
- Driving a commercial vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.04% or higher.
- Refusing to submit a breath/blood test.
- Leaving the scene of an accident you are involved in.
For a complete list of offenses resulting in the suspension of your CDL, visit the Washington DOL website.
Federal regulations are controlled by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and include:
- License disqualifications and fines for violating out-of-service orders.
- Suspensions and disqualifications ranging from 60 days to life for violations and convictions including:
- Violating railroad-highway grade crossings.
- Reckless driving and speeding.
- DUI/DWI convictions and arrests.
For more information on federal regulations and penalties, please see the FMCSA website.
If your CDL is disqualified:
- Notify your employer within 30 days.
- Notify the Washington DOL of out-of-state convictions within 30 days by writing a letter and sending it to:
Department of Licensing
PO Box 9030
Olympia, Washington 98507-9030
NOTE: At the end of your CDL suspension, you may need to pass the CDL knowledge and driving skills tests again.Other Topics in This Section