According to this article on Indianas News Center, the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles has seen a 22% increase in the number of drivers license suspensions. The BMV is attributing this to an increase in the number of drivers who are driving without insurance and subsequently have their driving privileges suspended. The total number of driver's who have had their license suspended from January 1, 2012 to October 15, 2012 is a staggering 172,235. Yes, you read that right, 172,235. By way of comparison, the city of Evansville, Indiana has a population (according to the 2000 census) of roughly 108,000 and Muncie, Indiana has a popluation of approximately 67,000.
The BMV can request a driver to provide proof of financial responsiblity (insurance) for a variety of reasons. Most often the request comes because the driver was involved in an automobile accident or was convicted of a driving offense (such as Drunk Driving (DUI/OWI), Reckless Driving or a Misdemeanor or Felony involving a vehicle). If proof of financial responsibility is not provided within the appropriate time frame, the BMV will suspend the driver's license for 90 days (or 1 year if a repeat violation). Additionally, the BMV will impose no-insurance reinstatement fees that must be paid prior to getting the license reinstated.
If the no insurance suspensions are truly causing this large of an increase in license suspensions, perhaps the legislature needs to revisit drivers ability to obtain hardship licenses (a license to go to and from work) for insurance suspensions. Currently, Indiana law does not allow for hardship licenses if the basis for the license suspension is for failure to have insurance (with a very limited exception).
Considering that both candidates for Governor have been talking about job creation and retention, I believe they should also consider helping Hoosiers get to their jobs.
If you have questions about suspended licenses or other criminal law matters, please contact Gregory A. Miller a Fort Wayne Criminal Defense Attorney, at (260)833-7249