What is the difference between a driver's license suspension and revocation in Nevada?

Posted by Neil Shouse | Feb 19, 2018 | 0 Comments

The practical difference between a driver's license suspension and revocation is that reinstating a suspended license is a little easier. This is because people with revoked licenses have to apply for an entirely new license. People with suspended licenses can get their old license back. But both processes require paperwork and a trip to the Nevada DMV.

Otherwise, a driver's license suspension is very similar to a revocation. The DMV allows people to contest a license suspension or revocation at a DMV hearing (an administrative trial). And it is a misdemeanor to drive during the suspension or revocation period. The penalties for driving on a suspended or revoked license include up to 6 months in jail and/or up to $1,000 in fines.


Most driver's license suspensions occur when the driver accumulates 12 or more demerit points. This suspension period lasts six (6) months.

The DMV tacks on demerit points to a person's license whenever he/she gets convicted of a moving violation. A sampling of the Nevada DMV's demerit point penalties include:

Nevada Moving Violation

Nevada DMV Demerit Points

speeding 1 – 10 mph


speeding 11 – 20 mph


speeding 21 – 30 mph


speeding 31 – 40 mph


speeding 41 mph


texting while driving


disobeying an officer


running a stop sign


failure to give information or render aid at the scene of an accident (see our hit and run article)


reckless driving


Demerit points stay on a person's license for one (1) year before disappearing.


Most driver's license revocations occur when the driver was convicted of a DUI. The length of the revocation period increases with each successive DUI:

Then when the driver gets a new license, he/she usually has to install a breath interlock device in his/her car for several months as a condition of keeping the license.

Reinstating the License

The process of reinstating a suspended or revoked license varies depending on the circumstances of the case. For instance, DUI defendants have to secure SR-22 insurance to get a new license. For instructions on how to reinstate a license, contact the Nevada DMV at either:

Las Vegas (702) 486-4368 option 1
Reno/Carson City (775) 684-4368 option 1
Rural Nevada (Toll Free) (877) 368-7828 option 1

Note that if more than a year has gone by since the defendant lost his/her license, the DMV may require that the person take a vision, written and/or driving test.

About the Author

Neil Shouse

A former Los Angeles prosecutor, attorney Neil Shouse graduated with honors from UC Berkeley and Harvard Law School (and completed additional graduate studies at MIT). He has been featured on CNN, Good Morning America, Dr Phil, Court TV, The Today Show and Court TV. Mr Shouse has been recognized by the National Trial Lawyers as one of the Top 100 Criminal and Top 100 Civil Attorneys.


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