On June 13, 2016, Governor Kasich signed S.B. 204 into law, making driver's license suspensions in drug cases discretionary rather than mandatory. The old law required a judge to suspend the driver's license of anyone convicted of a drug offense, even a minor misdemeanor possession charge. Advocates of the change in the law have argued for years that the mandatory suspension made no sense as a punishment when a drug possession is completely unrelated to the operation of a vehicle.
A court will still be required to suspend a defendant's driver's license for a drug offense if the defendant is convicted of an OVI arising out of the same set of circumstances as the drug offense.
The Bill will take effect on Sept. 13, 2016 and once it does, a defendant who received a drug related suspension prior to the bill's effective date will be able to file a motion for termination of the suspension.
If you are currently under a drug suspension and would like us to evaluate your situation and potentially have your right to drive reinstated, give us a call at 614-444-3036.
Jessica D'Varga is an Associate Attorney with The Law Offices of Saia & Piatt, Inc. and defends clients against criminal, traffic, and OVI charges in Ohio.