Operating a Vehicle after Revocation or Suspension

The State of Wisconsin requires any person that operates a motor vehicle to have a valid driver's license at the time of operation.

Vehicle operators may, for a variety of reasons, experience periods of time in which their driving privileges have been either suspended or revoked due to:

  • Unpaid tickets
  • The accumulation of too many demerit points within a one year period
  • A conviction for Operating While Intoxicated or affiliated offenses

When a person operates a vehicle with a suspended or revoked license, they can be charged with Operating after Revocation (OAR) or Operating after Suspension (OAS).

OAR/OAS Offenses can be Civil or Criminal

Most OAR or OAS tickets are civil in nature, carrying the potential for fines and additional license revocations. However, if a driver's license is revoked as a result of an OWI-related conviction, then the OAR may be a criminal offense that exposes the driver to the potential of having to serve jail time in addition to fines, costs, and the potential for additional loss of licensure. Penalties increase based on the number of prior offenses a driver has for either OAR or OAS offenses.

How to Defend an OAR or OAS Charge in Wisconsin

Aggressive defense of OAR and OAS cases in Wisconsin typically involve the attorney working with the client to find out the root cause of the license suspension or revocation. If it is possible to obtain reinstatement of the driver's license while an OAR or OAS case is pending, our attorneys will work the client to assist in doing so, as license reinstatement provides a strong incentive for prosecutorial agencies to reduce or dismiss the tickets, though that outcome is never a guarantee.

Wisconsin law currently allows random registration checks on motor vehicles, and in the event that such a check shows that the vehicle is registered to an unlicensed owner, this alone can form the basis of an investigative stop, even if the vehicle's operator has committed no other traffic violations.

If you have been charged with an OAR or OAS offense, our Madison defense lawyers can help you retain your driver's license. Call us today for a free 30 minute initial case review at 608-620-0018.