The Consequences of Driving without a Valid License in Pennsylvania
The state of Pennsylvania takes a serious approach to driving without a valid license. State laws distinguish, however, between driving on a suspended license and driving without a valid license.
Driving with a Suspended or Revoked License
The sanctions for driving on a suspended or revoked license are substantially more severe than simply driving without a license. If you are convicted of operating a motor vehicle pursuant to a suspension or revocation, in addition to a $200 fine, you face automatic loss of your license for a minimum of one year (three years if your license was revoked and has not been restored). These penalties, however, apply only if you lost your license for non-payment of a fine or for accumulating too many points on your driving record.
The law imposes far more serious penalties if the initial revocation was for certain reasons, such as:
- Accelerated rehabilitative disposition for a DUI
- Refusal to submit to blood alcohol testing pursuant to a DUI stop
If you are convicted of driving while your license is suspended because of either of these conditions, you face a mandatory 60-90 day jail sentence, in addition to any fines assessed. Furthermore, if you have a BAC of .02 or greater at the time of your arrest for driving on a suspended license, you could face fines of up to $5,000 and incarceration for up to two years.
Driving Without a License
Under Section 1501 of Title 75 the Pennsylvania Statutes, you must carry a copy of a valid drivers license with you when you are on the public highways and property in the state. Even if you have a valid license, but forgot to bring it with you, you can be cited for driving without a license (though you may be able to get the judge to dismiss the charge by providing a copy of a valid license at your hearing).
The penalties for driving can include fines of up to $200, but you can reduce the potential fine to $25 if you show that you previously had a valid license and less than a year has passed since the required date for renewal.
Contact the Law Offices of John E. Kusturiss, Jr.
At the Law Offices of John E. Kusturiss, Jr, we have more than 30 years of practice experience. Contact us online or call us at (610) 565-0240 to set up an appointment. There is no charge for your initial consultation. We are available to meet with you evenings or weekends upon request. We take Visa, MasterCard and Discover, as well as debit cards.