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How to Reinstate a Suspended Driver License in Colorado

If a motorist has a suspended drivers license in Colorado, then he or she must follow certain processes and procedures to regain driving privileges. The process to reinstate drivers license privileges includes many steps and documents and vary by the type of violation committed. A drivers license suspension can occur for several reasons. Only the Division of Motor Vehicles may restore a drivers license and grant driving privileges to residents. Get essential details regarding a revoked drivers license, how to apply for a provisional drivers license and more by reviewing the information below.

Reasons for a Suspended Drivers License in Colorado

A CO drivers license suspension can be the result of a broad range of traffic or other types of violations involving a motor vehicle. One situation that might lead to a revoked drivers license is if the motorist accumulates too many points. The number of points it takes to receive a drivers license suspension depends on the age of the driver and the type of violation.

  • Minor drivers younger than 18 years of age: 6 points accumulated in 12 consecutive months, or 7 or more points accumulated while license is active.
  • Drivers between 18 and 21 years of age: 9 points accumulated in 12 consecutive months; 12 points accrued in 24 consecutive months; 14 points accumulated while the license is active.
  • Adult drivers 21 years of age and older: 12 points accumulated in 12 consecutive months or 18 points accrued in 24 consecutive months.

Accumulating too many points is not the only reason license privileges may be suspended. A motorist may have to reinstate drivers license privileges for a variety of other reasons, including but not limited to:

  • Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Leaving the scene of an accident
  • Committing manslaughter as a result of a motor vehicle accident
  • Failing to pay a traffic violation fine
  • Failing to register a vehicle
  • Failing to provide evidence of car insurance
  • Failing to pay court-ordered child support

Whether a drivers license suspension occurs or the privileges are completely revoked determines what the drivers license reinstatement process will require. Any of the scenarios outlined above can lead to a suspension or revocation.

Process to Reinstate Drivers Licenses in Colorado

Reinstating a drivers license in Colorado can be simple if the license is merely suspended versus revoked. If a motorist has a suspended drivers license, he or she can begin the drivers license reinstatement process if all penalties (time served and/or fines) that were required have been satisfied. However, this only begins if the driving privileges are not revoked or suspended for any other reasons. To check a drivers license status, the resident needs to contact the Colorado Division of Motor Vehicles.

Once the designated amount of time for the suspended or revoked drivers license in Colorado has passed, the motorist can begin the process for reinstating drivers license privileges by going online, visiting a local office in person or submitting the necessary documents by mail. All license suspension and revocation types can be reinstated online or by mail, but only certain types of revoked and suspended drivers licenses can be reinstated at an office such as suspensions involving unpaid tickets, child support and point suspensions.

If a drivers license restoration is taking place in person at an office, then a new license can be issued at that time, or a current one is reinstated. However, if completing a drivers license reinstatement by mail or online and a new license must be issued, then the resident should allow several weeks for the new license to arrive in the mail. Additionally, if a motorist chooses to mail the Application for Reinstatement form to have driving privileges restored, then he or she needs to mail this document about one month prior to the eligibility date since processing time can take up to 20 days.

Motorists should note that if the process of restoring a drivers license is completed after the credential’s expiration date, then he or she will need to reapply for a license and also retake all driving tests. Additionally, just because a new license is issued does not mean a driving record is clear. The previous driving record and all violations will still be a part of the resident’s driving history.

Sometimes, it is possible to reinstate drivers license privileges early through participation in the ignition interlock program if a drivers license suspension occurred because of a DUI conviction. Early reinstatement is available to drivers who are Colorado residents, are at least 21 years old when the violation was committed and have satisfied all corresponding reinstatement requirements (other than time).

Penalties for Driving with a Suspended License in Colorado

If a motorist is found driving with a suspended license, then he or she will suffer additional consequences. The severity of the consequence can vary but can include a longer suspension time period, additional monetary fines and jail time.

How to Apply for a Colorado Provisional Drivers License

In some scenarios, a driver may be eligible to apply for a provisional drivers license in Colorado, also known as a probationary drivers license or red license. To obtain this type of license, the motorist must speak to the hearing officer while in court. If a hearing has not taken place, then one needs to be requested.

Colorado Provisional Drivers License Eligibility Requirements

Driving with a suspended license in Colorado is allowed if the motorist has a probationary license. This type of license is typically granted to a motorist who has a points suspension or child support related suspension. However, before reinstating the drivers license privileges (that are very limited), all tickets must be paid.

Colorado Provisional Drivers License Rules and Regulations

Even though a probationary license does allow certain CO drivers license reinstatement privileges, there are rules and regulations that apply. For instance, the motorist can only drive for certain reasons such as traveling to work or school. Law enforcement agencies will contact the driver to ensure the license is only being used for specific purposes, and the license will be taken away if used inappropriately. Additionally, if this conditional and limited drivers license reinstatement is utilized, the motorist cannot receive any tickets for moving violations or the probationary license will be revoked.