Criminal Defense Attorney in White Plains examines Aggravated Unlicensed Operation in NY


Did you know that driving without a license or driving with a suspended/revoked license in Westchester County is a crime under New York law?

Unfortunately, far too many people in Westchester County, NY do not know that under Section 511 of the New York Vehicle and Traffic Law you can be charged with the misdemeanor offense of Aggravated Unlicensed Operation or "AUO". In fact, AUO is one of the most commonly charged traffic related offense in Westchester.

More often than not, the reason that the person is suspended or revoked is due to some previously unresolved traffic violation or ticket. When you fail to answer a traffic ticket, by pleading "not guilty" or paying the related fine, the local court where the ticket is pending will notify the Department of Motor Vehicles of a "scofflaw". Individuals will receive a notice in the mail advising them that if they do not respond within a certain period of time, their driver's license will be suspended. Outside of the single suspension notice from DMV, there are no other notices sent to the driver.

This is particularly tricky for Westchester residents who move or change their mailing address without notifying the DMV. In these instances, the person may never receive the suspension notice and not know when their license will be suspended. Under the law, actual receipt of the notice does not matter and your driver's license will be validly suspended even without your knowledge.

The result is that when you are caught operating a motor vehicle, you will likely be arrested and charged with Aggravated Unlicensed Operation in the Third Degree (AUO 3 rd). As a misdemeanor, AUO 3 rd carries a maximum sentence of 30 days in jail. Aggravated Unlicensed Operation in the Second Degree (AUO 2 nd ) and First Degree (AUO 1 st), are more serious criminal offenses that usually result from multiple suspensions or alcohol related suspensions (such as those that result from DWI). A conviction under AUO 2 nd or AUO 1 st carries much more serious penalties.

Since the consequences for having any Aggravated Unlicensed Driver conviction are severe, including jail or probation, hiring a proven Westchester AUO defense attorney is extremely important. An experienced Westchester criminal defense attorney will be able to help explain the underlying suspension (and in some case help resolve that suspension) and will work to protect you from a criminal conviction.

The Aggravated Unlicensed Operation defense lawyers of Proto, Sachs & Brown, LLP have been defending the rights of people accused of AUO in Westchester County for years. If you are suspended for unanswered or unpaid traffic tickets, we will work tirelessly to resolve the scofflaws on your driving record and help you retain your full driving privileges. If you are suspended or revoked for an underlying criminal or DWI conviction, our AUO defense lawyers will aggressively defend you in court.


As former criminal prosecutors in Westchester and New York Counties with more than 50 years of combined experience, the accomplished AUO defense attorneys will help you. All initial consultations are FREE!

Contact the AUO criminal defense lawyers of Proto, Sachs & Brown, LLP for more information. (914) 840-5104.