What is an Immediate Threat Suspension?
An immediate threat suspension is an indefinite revocation of your Massachusetts driver’s license or right to drive in Massachusetts, which the Registry usually imposes at the request of a police officer. These revocations are solely based on the facts cited in a complaint submitted by a police department, and they are indeterminate in length. This means that you cannot get reinstated without going through a hearing process. G.L. c. 90 § 22(a) authorizes the RMV to impose these revocations.
The RMV receives immediate threat complaints from police officers across Massachusetts on a daily basis. A hearing officer is assigned to review the police complaints, and if he or she agrees that allowing the customer to continue to operate a motor vehicle wound jeopardize public safety, the hearing officer will indefinitely suspend the driver’s license.
The Registry rarely refuses to issue these suspensions when requested by police officers or medical professionals. Once this type of suspension issues, getting it reversed can be exceptionally difficult, especially without a lawyer. These indefinite suspensions can be triggered by erratic operations, complaints from the public to the police, or motor vehicle accidents. They can also be triggered by complaints filed by doctors, nurses, occupational therapists, and other medical providers.
Sometimes indefinite immediate threat suspensions are connected with criminal cases such as DUI drugs, operating under the influence of alcohol, negligent operation, or operating to endanger. In these situations, the Registry of Motor Vehicles will usually not even consider any type of reinstatement until the underlying criminal case is fully adjudicated and resolved.
To be legal, the underlying basis of an immediate threat suspension must be that the driver presents an imminent danger to the public, and he or she must be promptly removed from the road, even without a pre-suspension hearing. These suspensions take people by surprise, and their immediate nature may cause significant disruptions to a person’s life. Also, because these suspensions are indefinite in length, there is no right to reinstatement after serving a certain amount of revocation time. To get these open-ended revocations terminated the Registry or the Board of Appeal must be convinced that reinstating the customer’s license is legally warranted and he or she will not endanger the motoring public upon the return of his revoked license.
Immediate threat revocations can be appealed directly to the Registry or the Board of Appeal. In most cases, it makes sense to go directly to the Board and not the Registry.
Fortunately, Attorney Brian Simoneau has over 20 years of experience in dealing with motor vehicle matters such as this and he has successfully appealed hundreds of indefinite immediate threat suspensions, getting his clients’ licenses returned to them. There are usually compelling legal and factual arguments to be made which can require the Registry to terminate the license revocation and reinstate the customer’s license.
If you have received an indefinite immediate threat revocation notice from the Registry of Motor Vehicles, contact Attorney Simoneau to see how he can help you get your license back. He has been defending clients from immediate threat suspension for many years, and he has consistently achieved outstanding results in these cases. Legal assistance can be extremely valuable in these situations, and the sooner you contact a lawyer, the better. Don’t waste time going back and forth to Registry hearings only to be denied reinstatement.