Suspended licence due to unpaid fines, case was 14yrs ago

Ricafort
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Suspended licence due to unpaid fines, case was 14yrs ago

by: Ricafort on
Tue Nov 13, 2018 11:28 pm

I was informed via email by my insurance company on Nov.10, 2018 that my driver's licence had been suspended due to unpaid fines since Aug. 2018. They had requested an abstract due to a renewal and it came back with a suspension.

The incident which dates back to June 2004 was a minor fender bender that did not require police because damage was under $1000. and no one was hurt. Both parties agreed to resolve the issue on our own.

Unbeknownst to me I had been charged with a) failed to report and b) improper licence. Court date was set on April 2005 which I do not recall even having attended. A summons was issued which I did not remember even having received it, regardless the case was closed with convictions and fines.

However I was able to renew my licence this year in May without any outstanding fines and since licences need to be renewed every 5yrs I was able to do so back in May 2013 and also May 2008. I have not had any traffic violations since this particular case.

Here are my contentions:
- I did not receive a notice of suspension letter from MTO
- why did I have to find out thru my insurance co.
- how was I able to renew my licence several times without the fines showing on my profile
- why did it take the courts and MTO 14yrs
- no warning letter of imminent suspension from MTO
- no disclosure since the records were purged 7yrs ago
- fines increased due to interest
- reinstatement fee of $298. on top of fines
- "Extension of Time to Pay" takes 3-5 business days and reinstatement fees still applies
- will my insurance rates skyrocket
- will the "Suspended licence" be on my driver's profile for the next 3yrs

I had no intentions in avoiding paying for the fines since I knew full well it would have been on my driver's record. Had I known it was still outstanding I would have paid it years ago and resolved the issue and avoided this whole mess.

Hopefully at the very least my application for the extension to pay is approved and that the reinstatement fees waived. Best case scenario, fines expunged and reinstatement fees waived due to length of time.

I also found a few interesting facts:
- the courts aren't obligated to inform MTO of fines at a timely manner after conviction
- MTO is not obligated to send out warning letters of pending suspension due to unpaid fines
- the court offices have been dealing with many similar cases in the last few months and increasing

Thank you in advance for any helpful advice which would be greatly appreciated.


ynotp
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Location: Ontario

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by: ynotp on
Thu Nov 15, 2018 3:58 pm

What seems to be happening now is that cash-strapped municipalities who administer the courts are going after unpaid fines and asking the MTO to suspend licences of people who owe money for HTA infractions. An administrative suspension for nonpayment of a fine is treated differently than a suspension of your licence as punishment for an offence in that they are not held against you.

If you cannot remember the exact details of what happened so long ago then you will not do very well if you ask a JP to reopen the case. It sounds like the other driver reported the accident and you never showed to the collision reporting centre, there was a problem with your class of licence, and the officer could not get a hold of you so in all likelihood a summons was left with someone at your address on file. You may not have received the notice of conviction in the mail for a multitude of reasons. Maybe you failed to update your address or a court made an error, or the person who got it never gave it to you.

So you'll be out a few hundred bucks, but I would be really happy I did not find out about the suspension from a police officer while driving and be charged with driving while under suspension.


Ricafort
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Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Nov 13, 2018 8:42 pm

by: Ricafort on
Fri Nov 16, 2018 11:50 am

Yes it was a good thing I was never stopped during the 3 months I drove under suspension without my knowledge. My main concern now is how will this affect my insurance rates?

Also with regards to the incident, like I said it was a minor fender bender during a busy rush hour, minor damages and no one was hurt.

It just seems so unfair that they spring this up on unsuspecting driver's with an immediate suspension without chance of payment then have the $198. reinstatement fee on top of the fines which by the way went up due to interest.


Ricafort
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Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Nov 13, 2018 8:42 pm

by: Ricafort on
Tue Nov 20, 2018 3:28 pm

I was informed via email by my insurance company on Nov.10, 2018 that my driver's licence had been suspended due to unpaid fines since Aug. 2018. They had requested an abstract due to a renewal and it came back with a suspension.

The incident which dates back to June 2004 was a minor fender bender that did not require police because damage was under $1000. and no one was hurt. Both parties agreed to resolve the issue on our own.

Unbeknownst to me I had been charged with a) failed to report and b) improper licence. Court date was set on April 2005 which I do not recall even having attended. A summons was issued which I did not remember even having received it, regardless the case was closed with convictions and fines.

However I was able to renew my licence this year in May without any outstanding fines and since licences need to be renewed every 5yrs I was able to do so back in May 2013 and also May 2008. I have not had any traffic violations since this particular case.

Here are my contentions:
- I did not receive a notice of suspension letter from MTO
- how was I able to renew my licence several times without the fines showing on my profile
- why did it take the courts and MTO 14yrs
- no warning letter of imminent suspension from MTO
- no disclosure since the records were purged 7yrs ago
- fines increased due to interest
- reinstatement fee of $198. on top of fines
- "Extension of Time to Pay" takes 3-5 business days and reinstatement fees still applies
- will my insurance rates skyrocket
- will the "Suspended licence" be on my driver's profile for the next 3yrs

I had no intentions in dodging to pay for the fines since I knew full well it would have been on my driver's record. Had I known it was still outstanding I would have paid it years ago and resolved the issue and avoided this whole mess.

Hopefully at the very least my application for the extension to pay is approved and that the reinstatement fees waived. Best case scenario, fines expunged and reinstatement fees waived due to length of time.

I also found a few interesting facts:
- the courts aren't obligated to inform MTO of fines at a timely manner after conviction
- MTO is not obligated to send out warning letters of pending suspension due to unpaid fines
- the court offices have been dealing with many similar cases in the last few months and increasing

Thank you in advance for any helpful advice which would be greatly appreciated.


DynamicVapor
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Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2018 5:03 pm

by: DynamicVapor on
Tue Nov 27, 2018 6:28 pm

I understand your predicament.

If you can always apply for a reopening, but since it was from such a long time ago, I highly doubt they will. The onus is on you to show that you were not aware of the charges, no notices were sent to you etc. I would suggest you try getting some utility bills from that time and attach it to your application to show where you were living at the time, etc. Just provide as much proof as possible for your application. The more there is the better, whatever you think will help your position.

If the re-opening is granted then you can get disclosure etc etc. Records are kept longer than 7 years btw. That's just a CRA audit thing, where they don't look past 7 years.

If re-opening is not granted then you can file an extension to pay the fine. You can ask for up to one year and you can provide reasons why you need the extension etc, and why it took you so long to ask for one. The clerk will be able to guide you through the admin side of it but the reasons are your own.

The extension takes about 3 days to be granted, you can call the court house everyday to check the status on either the re-opening or extension.

After that, MTO will take about 5 days to process it if it's granted. You can also call the MTO daily to check if the suspension is removed.

You'll have to pay the fee for reinstatement regardless if the application is granted or not. It is an admin fee and there's no way to avoid paying it.

If no applications are granted then unfortunately, you will have to pay the fines in full, and reinstatement fees to get your license back.

DO NOT DRIVE A MOTOR VEHICLE, when your license is suspended. If you get pulled over and get a ticket you will get receive a fine of $1,000 and 6-months suspension on conviction.


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