Articles Posted in License Suspensions

RW, a 57 year old owner of a landscaping/irrigation business in Tennessee, received a notice from the Tennessee Department of Motor Vehicles that his Tennessee License was being suspended because Massachusetts had suspended his right to operate a motor vehicle due to an outstanding warrant in a Massachusetts Court. RW needed a license to run his business and to do all the things that we all do with a license. Unfortunately for RW the warrant was a probation violation warrant. Thirty years earlier, in 1987, RW had been found guilty of Larceny Over $250.00 in Cambridge District Court. He was given a 1 year suspended sentence and placed on probation for 2 years and ordered to pay restitution. Now, 30 years later, he was at risk of having that 1 year suspended sentence put into effect. On Tuesday, October 10, 2017 RW called Attorney Robert Lewin in North Andover, MA and explained the situation. Attorney Lewin told RW that he would call him back. Attorney Lewin called the Clerk-Magistrate’s Office and was able to get the details on the case including the bank to whom the restitution was owing. The bank was no longer in business. Attorney Lewin called the probation office at the Court. It turns out that RW’s probation officer from 30 years earlier still worked in the probation department! He was now the Chief Probation Officer. Attorney Lewin explained RW’s situation to the Chief Probation Officer and explained that the bank was no longer in existence. As promised, Attorney Lewin called RW back (that same Tuesday) and explained the situatuion to RW and explained that he felt he could get the warrant canceled and the case resolved without RW coming to Massachusetts. The next day, Wednesday, October 11, 2017, RW hired Attorney Lewin. The following day, less than 24 hours after being retained, Attorney Lewin went to Cambridge District Court and had the case sent into the Courtroom. Attorney Lewin explained to the Judge that the bank was no longer in existence and that the probation office was not looking for any additional sanction. Attorney Lewin explained that RW had left Massachusetts and moved to Tennessee shortly after being placed on probation. Attorney Lewin asked the Judge (a) to waive (excuse) RW’s appearance in court, (b) to allow Attorney Lewin to appear in RW’s absence, (c) to order the warrant canceled, (d) to terminate RW’s probation, and (e) to discharge RW from any further responsibility to the Court. The Judge granted the request and the case was closed.

Attorney Lewin left the courthouse at 9:35 AM and called RW. RW could not believe the news. Attorney Lewin explained to RW that it would take 24 hours for the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles to remove the suspension of RW’s right to drive and an additional 24 hours for that to get entered into the National Driver Registry. Two days later RW walked into the Tennessee Department of Motor Vehicles and got his Tennessee License reinstated.

After 42 years of criminal defense practice and 4 years before that as an Assistant District Attorney, Attorney Lewin knew just whom to call and what to say to get the quick and most favorable result possible.

KH, a 54 year old landscaper living now in Vermont, was arrested in Lawrence, MA in 2003 and charged with Unlawful Possession of Heroin, Conspiracy to Violate the Controlled Substance Act, and Operating After Revocation of License, 2nd Offense. KH failed to appear in Lawrence District Court following his arrest and a default warrant issued for his arrest. KH left Massachusetts and moved to Vermont. Vermont revoked his right to drive and told him he could not get a Vermont license until his revocation in Massachusetts was cleared. In order to clear his Massachusetts revocation KH had to get the warrant in Lawrence District Court cleared. KH contacted and retained Attorney Robert Lewin from North Andover, MA.

Attorney Lewin went over to the Court and obtained copies of all the relevant papers in KH’s case (the Court Docket, the Criminal Complaint, the Police Report, and a copy of KH’s Criminal Record). When Attorney Lewin read the police report he recognized the name of the arresting officer and was aware of the fact that the arresting officer had been fired from the police department for misconduct. The police report did mention that a second officer had assisted in the arrest. That second officer was still around. Attorney Lewin met with the Assistant District Attorney at Lawrence District Court and discussed the case at length. The DA’s Office took the position that KH should not be rewarded for “skipping town” for 14 years and they refused to dismiss the case in his absence.

On September 25, 2017 KH came down to Massachusetts and KH and Attorney Lewin went into Lawrence District Court. KH was booked into Probation and then KH and Attorney Lewin went into the First Criminal Session to address the warrant and the case. Attorney Lewin was prepared to address the court when the Assistant District Attorney stood up and told the Judge that the DA’s Office could not go forward because the officer was no longer available. Attorney Lewin then moved to have the warrant recalled (cancelled) and the case dismissed. The Judge granted Attorney Lewin’s motion (request) and ordered the warrant cancelled and the case dismissed.

On November 4, 1988, HT, a then 21 year old fellow from Cambridge, walked into a bank and presented a check to the teller to be cashed. The check was made out to HT. Unfortunately the signature on the check had been forged. The teller suspecting there was a problem with the check alerted the branch manager who in turn notified the police. The police responded to the bank and HT was arrested and charged with forgery and uttering (trying to pass) a forged check. Both charges are felonies. HT was bailed out and then left Massachusetts. He failed to appear in Court. A subsequent criminal complaint was taken out against HT for Failing to Appear and a warrant was issued for his arrest on that charge as well.

Twenty-nine years passed. HT married and now has six children and nine grandchildren. HT lives in Wyoming and is a truck driver. The warrants finally caught up with HT and Wyoming suspended his license due to the outstanding warrants in Massachusetts. HT contacted Attorney Robert Lewin from North Andover, MA. HT retained Attorney Lewin. Attorney Lewin went over to Cambridge District Court (now in Medford) and reviewed all the Court papers. It became immediately clear to Attorney Lewin that the Commonwealth could not prove either case against HT. The bank closed decades ago and all the witness would be long gone. Attorney Lewin approached the Assistant District Attorney and she agreed to a dismissal of the charges.

On August 16, 2017 Attorney Lewin had the case put on the Court list for hearing that day. Attorney Lewin prepared a Motion to Excuse HT from appearing in Court. Attorney Lewin appeared before the Judge without HT. The Judge granted Attorney Lewin’s Motion and ordered the warrants against HT recalled (canceled) and the Judge ordered all the charges against HT dismissed without any court costs.

On July 19, 2015 KC, a 22 year old woman from Lawrence, was driving to work in Lexington when she was pulled over by the State Police. Her Massachusetts Driver’s License had been previously suspended by the Registry of Motor Vehicles because she had accumulated three speeding tickets and because she had failed to pay speeding tickets. Because she had 5 convictions for speeding and because she had two payment defaults, her driver record from the RMV was a mess. The State Trooper cited KC for operating after suspension of license and she subsequently received a summons to go to Concord District Court for an arraignment. KC retained Attorney Robert Lewin from North Andover. Attorney Lewin immediately ran KC’s driver record and obtained a copy of the police report. As always, the devil is in the details.

KC had actually received two notices on the same date (July 9, 2015) from the RMV. One notice was a notice of suspension for having accumulated three speeding tickets which informed her that her license was suspended effective July 19, 2015 (the same date she was stopped by the State Police). The second notice was a notice of INTENT to suspend her license for the same three speeding tickets. The effective date of that suspension was October 7, 2015. Attorney Lewin wanted KC to have her licernse back by the time they went to court for the arraignment. KC needed an additional month to complete her requirements to get reinstated. Attorney Lewin had the date of KC’s arraignment postponed until November 23, 2015. In late October 2015 KC got her license reinstated.

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On March 11, 1997 JL was stopped by the Andover Police for speeding. When the Police ran his license it came back as suspended. When the police checked his record he had three prior convictions for driving on a suspended license. JL went to court for arraignment. The case proceeded in Court and the DA was looking for JL to go to jail. The case was set down for trial in 1999 and JL defaulted on the trial date, a warrant issued for his arrest, and he went on the run. Fast forward 18 years. JL is living in Florida and has a Florida license. He goes to renew his FL license and FL will not renew because FL is now aware of the warrant in Massachusetts. JL continues to drive in FL and gets caught. The Judge in FL tells JL to get his warrant cleared in Massachusetts and get his license reinstated in Massachusetts otherwise the FL judge is going to send him to jail.

JL retains Attorney Robert Lewin in North Andover. It takes the Clerk’s Office in Lawrence Court two weeks to locate the papers from 1997; the papers had actually been misfiled. The papers are located. The police report is located and the police officer who stopped JL back in 1997 is still an active duty police officer on the Andover Police Department! Attorney Lewin meets with the District Attorney and convinces the District Attorney to dismiss the case upon the payment of $650.00 in Court Costs. The DA’s Office, however, insists that they will not dismiss the case until and unless JL comes to Court in MA.

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On August 24, 2015 JO, a 52 year old woman from Lawrence was driving her car and headed the wrong way down a one way street. There was an officer there who immediately pulled her over. Unfortunately for JO her license was suspended and had been suspended since 1993 when she was involved in a car accident and failed to pay a property damage judgment that had been entered against her. In Massachusetts if you are involved in an accident where you cause damage to another vehicle (or other property) and you fail to pay for the damage the Registry suspends your license until you pay the property damage judgment or work out a payment schedule. JO had never been able to pay or work out a payment schedule. JO was cited by the officer and was sent a notice to come to court for a Clerk-Magistrate hearing for a one-way street violation and for operating after suspension of license. JO retained Attorney Robert Lewin.
Attorney Lewin told JO the best approach in these cases is to get your license reinstated before the Court hearing. It turned out that the Attorney for the party that had the property damage judgment against JO had died. Attorney Lewin sent JO to the RMV and because there was no record as to whom the money was owing and there was no one to pay the RMV lifted the suspension and reinstated JO’s driving privileges. Because it had been 22 years, JO was issued a learner’s permit and must take the driving test again. Attorney Lewin spoke with the Police Prosecutor and told the Police Prosecutor the background of the case and that JO had been reinstated by the RMV. The police prosecutor agreed that he would not press for a criminal complaint to be issued against JO at the Clerk-Magistrate Hearing.
On September 24, 2015, JO and Attorney Lewin appeared at Lawrence District Court for a Clerk-Magistrate Hearing. Attorney Lewin showed the Clerk-Magistrate and the Police Prosecutor JO’s new learners permit. Attorney Lewin asked that a criminal complaint not be issued against JO. The Clerk-Magistrate then dismissed the application for the criminal complaint and she also entered a not responsible finding on the one-way street violation. JO won her entire case. JO walked out of the courthouse very happy.

CB, a 40 year old plumber who needs a license to work, got in trouble in Lynn District Court back in 2009. He left Massachusetts and moved to FL and got a FL license. In 2015 he went to renew his FL license and was told he could not because his license/right to operate had been suspended in MA due to an outstanding warrant in Lynn District Court. In fact CB had a 2009 criminal case in Lynn that was in warrant status due to unpaid money. When CB called Lynn District Court he was told he would have to come up to MA to clear the warrant. On Monday, September 21, 2015 CB retained Attorney Robert Lewin from North Andover. On Wednesday, September 23, 2015 Attorney Lewin went to Lynn District Court without CB and paid the moneys that were owing to the Court. The Court removed the default that had been entered against CB, cancelled the warrant, and ordered the case dismissed. The Registry of Motor Vehicles was notified, the suspension on CB’s license/right to operate was lifted, and CB is now able to renew his FL license.

EC, a 69 year old gentlemen from Stoneham, had 3 convictions for OUI in Massachusetts. His last conviction was in 2006. As a result of that conviction he lost his license for 13 years [8 years for the conviction + 5 years for refusing the breath test]. In 2010, EC retained Attorney Robert Lewin from North Andover in an attempt to get a hardship license. Attorney Lewin had EC document attendance at AA meetings over a number of months and Attorney Lewin had EC enroll for treatment and counseling with a LDAC (Licensed Drug & Alcohol Counselor). A report was obtained from the LDAC. EC obtained a letter from his employer documenting the need for a license. Attorney Lewin and EC went to the Registry of Motor Vehicles (in Wilmington) for a hearing on obtaining a hardship license. After a lengthy hearing the hearing officer took the case under advisement. After several weeks EC received a notice from the RMV that his application for a hardship had been approved. The hardship license was granted (8 AM to 8 PM) with an IID (Ignition Interlock Device). EC got the IID installed in his car obtained the hardship license and life was good.

On December 19, 2014 EC went up to New Hampshire. The hours past by and at about 10:30 PM EC headed back home to Stoneham. He was pulled over on Rt. 95 in Boxford for speeding by the State Police. When the police officer saw that EC’s driving privileges ended at 8:00 PM the Trooper wrote EC up for speeding and unlicensed operation. EC again contacted Attorney Lewin. Attorney Lewin instructed EC to request a clerk-magistrate hearing immediately (that day). EC took the citation to Haverhill District Court and requested a Clerk-Magistrate Hearing. On January 20, 2015 EC and Attorney Lewin appeared in Haverhill District Court for the hearing. Attorney Lewin explained to the clerk-magistrate that EC had not been drinking at all and that this was simply an example of EC having let the time pass beyond 8:00 PM. Attorney Lewin requested that a criminal complaint not be issued against EC. The State Police did not object and the Clerk then denied the application for the criminal complaint and found EC not responsible of the speeding charge.

In 1983 and 1984 WL, then 23 and 24 years old got into a spate of trouble with the Haverhill Police. He had charges of Violating Probation on an Operating Under the Influence of Liquor charge, Malicious Destruction of Property (a Felony), two charges of Operating an Uninsured Motor Vehicle, and a charge of Attaching Plates to Conceal a Vehicle. It all became too much so WL headed out west to California for greener pastures. Months turned into years and years turned into decades. In 2014, WL, now 53 years old, is living in Pennsylvania and he went to renew his Pennsylvania gun license. He was told he could not renew his gun license because he had these warrants in Haverhill District Court. WL first hired a Massachusetts lawyer who does gun license cases. When the lawyer saw the situation in Haverhill District Court, the lawyer told WL you need to get a lawyer who knows the Haverhill District Court and who has experience in getting old cases cleaned up. On Wednesday, September 10, WL contacted Attorney Robert Lewin in North Andover, MA. They talked on the phone and then WL retained Attorney Lewin (paying the legal fee by wire transfer). Later that day Attorney Lewin went to Haverhill District Court, reviewed all the papers, and spoke directly to the Probation Department. On the DUI case WL had been put on probation back in 1984 but he utterly failed to comply with his probation. He did not do the DUI Program and he had not paid the court fees and fines. The one big thing that WL did have going for him was that for the last 30 years he had not got into any trouble. Attorney Lewin was able to convince the Probation not to ask that WL’s probation be revoked. On Friday, September 12, 2014, WL flew out to Boston and met Attorney Lewin at Haverhill District Court. Attorney Lewin and WL went in front of the Judge. Attorney Lewin explained to the Judge that over the last 30 years WL had gone on to become a productive citizen, that he had his own business, that he was raising two children, and most importantly that WL had stayed out of trouble. The Judge was impressed with WL’s progress over the last 30 years and agreed to dismiss the probation violation. The Judge then dismissed all five cases against WL and ordered WL to pay a total of $1,000 in court costs. WL paid the $1,000 immediately before anyone changed their mind. Within 48 hours of retaining Attorney Lewin all five of WL’s cases in Haverhill District Court were dismissed. WL was thrilled and flew back to Pennsylvania to get his gun license. Had the Probation Office asked for WL’s probation to be revoked and had the Judge revoked his probation, WL could have been sentenced to up to 2 1/2 years in jail and his right to drive would have been revoked for one year (and Pennsylvania would have revoked his Pennsylvania driver’s license for the one year period). He had a lot at stake and it worked out well. WL gave Attorney Lewin a big thank you and handshake as they left the Courthouse.

On February 16, 2014 TF was operating a Caterpillar Front End Loader doing snow removal on Rt. 93 South in Woburn. It was 2:00 am and it was snowing hard. A car came onto Rt. 93 and was going too fast for the conditions and crashed into the Front End Loader. The State Police responded to the scene. When asked for his license TF told the police that his license (a Vermont License) was back at the shop. The police ran his license information and learned that TF was suspended in Vermont and had been denied a license in MA. The police charged TF with unlicensed operation, license class violation, and no license in possession. It turns out that TF’s license in Vermont had been suspended for his failure to complete a DUI Program. He was completely unlicensed in MA. TF retained Attorney Robert Lewin. Attorney Lewin instructed TF to complete all his outstanding requirements to get reinstated in VT. On September 15, 2014 TF and Attorney Lewin appeared in Woburn District Court. After a productive meeting between Attorney Lewin and the Assistant District Attorney, the DA’s office agreed to dismiss all the charges against TF upon the payment of $150.00 in court costs. Attorney Lewin told TF to pay the costs immediately before someone changes their mind. TF paid the costs immediately and they case went completely away. TF left the Courthouse a happy fellow.