Driving While Prohibited (13:XI)
It is an offense under Motor Vehicle Act s 95(1)(a) for an individual to drive a motor vehicle on a highway or industrial road knowing that he or she is prohibited from doing so under:
- ss 91 (prohibition issued by the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia for an unsatisfied court judgment),
- 92 (prohibition against driving relating to fitness or ability to drive),
- 93 (prohibition issued by Superintendent in the public interest),
- 94.2 (driving prohibition for driving while impaired by alcohol or refusing to provide a breath sample without reasonable excuse),
- 215 (24 hour impaired driving prohibition),
- 215.43 (immediate roadside driving prohibition), or
- 251(4) (prohibition for driving while failing to hold a license, or while an impoundment notice was issued on the license),
Then the person commits an offence and is liable:
- on a first conviction, to a fine of not less than $500 and not more than $2 000 or to imprisonment for not more than 6 months, or to both, and
- on a subsequent conviction, regardless of when the contravention occurred, to a fine of not less
than $500 and not more than $2 000 and to imprisonment for not less than 14 days and not more than one year.
- The individuals driving record will also be blemished and they will receive a 10 point Motor Vehicle Act infraction on their record.
The term “knowingly” means that Crown must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the person charged knew that they were prohibited from driving. However, service of a prohibition certificate by registered mail, per Motor Vehicle Act s 95(4)(a) constitutes constructive knowledge, even in cases where the accused never reads the driving prohibition: R. v. Wall, 2010 CarswellBC 3398, 2010 BCPC 316.
It is advisable that individuals charged with Driving While Prohibited seek out legal advice from a lawyer. It is possible to work out a plea deal with the Crown Counsel to a lesser included offence of Driving Without a Licence pursuant to s. 24(1) of the Motor Vehicle Act. The benefit of this resolution is that:
- There is no statutory minimum driving prohibition;
- No minimum fine amount; and
- The individuals driving record will only be blemished with a 3 point Motor Vehicle Act infraction on their record.
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