It is not uncommon for Massachusetts drivers to head to big party cities like Miami and Las Vegas and get their driving privileges suspended or revoked. This may result from multiple DUIs in the area or a serious car crash. Many may then believe they can escape their driving records in Florida and Nevada by just heading back to Massachusetts like nothing ever happened.
This is a far cry from the truth. According to Mass.gov, states have access to a National Driver Register. Every state is required to use this to notify a driver’s home state if they have committed any offense that led to a suspension or revocation of their privilege to drive in those areas. When Massachusetts receives a notification of suspension or revocation in another state, the driver will receive a suspension notice in the mail from the Registry of Motor Vehicles.
Ideally, the driver should resolve the issue in 30 days. To resolve any revocation issues in Massachusetts, a driver must first be reinstated in the state(s) that revoked or suspended their license. Once this is done a current driving record or Clearance Letter must be submitted to the RMV Service Center to resolve the problem. If 30 days have already past, any suspensions or revocations in Massachusetts may have to be manually removed by the RMV. At the time of writing this article, the fee for reinstating driving privileges once suspension took effect was $100.
If the out-of-state offense was due to vehicular manslaughter or driving under the influence, the Massachusetts driver may need to see a Hearings Officer. If the driver was licensed in Massachusetts at the time of committing these offences, the Commonwealth essentially absorbs these crimes as though it happened on state soil. This may lead to facing penalties and legal repercussions within the state, as well.
As FindLaw points out, driving on public roadways is not a right; it is a privilege. This right can be suspended or revoked at any time for anything from drag racing to drug convictions. Because of this, it is important to remember that even when on vacation in another state, any infractions in that state could haunt a driver at home for a lifetime.