Driving Without a License on Person
Accused of Driving without a License on Person in Georgia? A Yeargan & Kert, LLC Lawyer will Assist You in Proving Your Innocence.
In Georgia, a driver is stopped for a traffic violation or for any reason while operating a motor vehicle. Often, a police officer will ask for proof of identification. The proof of identification is typically a driver’s license. If you are not able to produce a driver’s license, you can be charged with driving without a license on person.
Driving without a License On Person in Georgia can Happen in Three Ways
After a traffic stop, driving without a license can happen in three scenarios:
- A driver has a license, but does not have it with them. In this scenario, a driver has a valid license and the privilege of operating a motor vehicle in Atlanta. However, they do not have the driver’s license in their wallet or purse.
- A driver’s license was suspended, canceled or revoked by the state of Georgia. Unfortunately, many people may drive without having a valid license without knowing it. The license may be revoked, or taken away, for a period of time. It may be suspended for six months or 12 months with the opportunity to get it back later. It may be canceled. This means they do not have a license at all.
- A driver never applied for a driver’s license or it expired. In circumstances, a person may learn how to operate a motor vehicle, but not go through the proper steps of getting a license. In Georgia, no one is exempt from having a driver’s license. This means everyone must have a valid license to drive.
In Atlanta, the Law Defines not having a Driver’s License on a Person in Three Elements
Remember, a police officer may accuse a driver of not having their license. However, a prosecutor must prove the driver did not present their license at the time they were stopped by police. The ways, or elements, the prosecutor uses to prove guilt are:
- Every driver must have a driver’s license in their immediate possession at all times when operating a motor vehicle in Georgia. The drive did not have the license at the time of the traffic stop.
- Every driver must display their license when an Atlanta police officer requests to see it. The driver did not give the officer their driver’s license when requested. OR
- The driver had their license at the time the police officer requested it, but refused to comply. The refusal creates an assumption the driver did not have a license at all.
Driving Without a License on Person in Georgia is a Misdemeanor Offense
If a driver is convicted of not having a license at the time of a traffic stop, they face a misdemeanor penalty. The punishment for violating this law for the first time is:
- Mandatory minimum fine of $500
- Possibly two days in county jail
- Possibly six-month driving license suspension
If a driver is punished for a second time for not having their driver’s license for a second time, the penalty is:
- Mandatory minimum fine of $1,000
- Possibly 10 days in county jail
- Additional six-month license suspension
To be punished for not having a license at the time of a traffic stop for the second time, it has to occur within five years of the first offense. For example, a driver was stopped in 2015 and did not have their license on them. They were again stopped in 2017 and did not have their license on them. It would be considered a second offense because it happened within five years.
Fighting a Driving Without a License On Person Charge When the Driver has a Valid License in Atlanta
Sometimes the first situation happens to a driver. They have a valid license, but do not have it on them at the time they were stopped. To fight the charge and avoid the harsh consequences of the misdemeanor offense, the driver can later show a valid license.
For a driver to prove their innocence, they must show at their hearing they had a valid license at the time they were stopped. For instance, the driver may show the license they did not have at the traffic stop.
This proof will avoid having to spend days in jail or have their license suspended. However, the driver will still have to pay a fine. The fine is approximately $10.
A Driver Does not have to have a Valid Georgia License to Operate a Motor Vehicle in Georgia
The state requires everyone to have a license while operating a motor vehicle in Atlanta. It does not specifically state the driver’s license have to be issued in Georgia. So in the first situation, the driver can prove they are innocent of not having a valid license by having:
- Proof they were giving the right to operate a motor vehicle by the U.S. government
- A valid license from their home country or state
- Having a license issued by their home state while on active duty in Georgia
- The purpose of temporarily operating a farm tractor or farm equipment on a highway to conduct farm business
- Operating a motorized cart according to local Atlanta ordinance
- Any Atlanta resident 15 years old or older taking in-car training in a vehicle that is not considered a commercial vehicle. They must be under the direct supervision of a driving instructor and have a permit.
Contact Yeargan & Kert, LLC to Fight Your Atlanta not having a License on Person Charge
Things happen. You may have forgotten your license at home. You may have thought you could drive on a suspended license when you were stopped by police and asked for your license. Whatever happened, Yeargan & Kert, LLC is here to represent you. You do not need to have this criminal act on your record. Also, you want to avoid your auto insurance increasing and other problems connected with this charge. Contact Yeargan & Kert, LLC immediately to start fighting your charge and put this situation behind you.