For a number of years the City of Philadelphia neglected to report convictions for drug cases to PennDOT, negating the ability for the department to suspend their drivers license. Those convicted in Philly should have served anywhere from 6 months to two years if PennDOT were properly notified. If you got a drug charge in the past that is now about to suspend your driver’s license, call us to help fight this delayed suspension.
In 2012, at least 11,499 people should have been reported, according to court records. Only four were. Last year, at least 11,246 people should have been reported. And 342 were.
After The Inquirer raised the reporting failure earlier this year, the Philadelphia courts began complying with the law. Officials say they are limiting the fix to those convicted for drugs in the city since the beginning of 2013.
The horrible part is that now, almost a year after conviction and believing they were serving all penalties assigned by the court for these violations, PennDOT will NOW suspend the license of nearly 11,000 people?!?…after they have rehabilitated, after they get their job back….after everything has started to turn around. A simple possession charge comes back to haunt you a year later and will ruin the recovery of anyone working toward that goal of rehabilitation. What a kick in the gut.
“It kind of fell through the cracks,” said Deborah E. Daley, chief deputy of the Philadelphia courts’ Office of Judicial Records. “Believe it or not, until you came asking for that information, we weren’t sending them.”
Fell through the cracks? A driving privilege is not something that should fall through the cracks. The ability to drive, even in Philly, is a major importance to every resident. Reliable transportation is the key to recovery for many who have been down this path.
To pile on to the issue, anyone convicted of a drug violation in Philadelphia will NOT be able to obtain a limited work license. A drug charge is an automatic disqualification to get a restricted license to drive for work, school, or medical reasons. So the suspension needs to be served in full.
The good news is that these suspension can be fought. If you are convicted of a drug charge and get a suspension notice from PennDOT you need to contact us right away! You may be able to keep PennDOT from taking your license and fight this injustice!