Florida Statute Section 322.03 criminalizes driving without a valid driver’s license. The offense is a second-degree misdemeanor, which carries fines and other penalties, including possible jail time.
Motorists cited for driving with no valid driver’s license (NVDL) often dismiss the charge as trivial. This is partly due to the fact that offenders aren’t immediately placed in handcuffs and dragged to police stations. But it’s important to realize that receiving a citation for NVDL constitutes an arrest. It’s a criminal charge. You’re simply released on your own recognizance.
If you dismiss the citation, or handle it poorly, you might find yourself behind bars and forced to pay a hefty fine.
Penalties For Driving Without A Valid Driver’s License In Florida
There are three penalties associated with a NVDL citation:
- you may be forced to pay a fine up to $500.
- you may be required to spend up to 60 days in jail.
- you’ll be saddled with a permanent criminal record.
Few cases result in jail time. Moreover, the fine imposed on the offender is usually less than $500. But it’s important to recognize the potential consequences.
More worrisome is having a permanent criminal record. A criminal record can impact your ability to get a job and obtain a place to live. It also carries a social stigma that can affect your social life.
Given the above, what should you do if you receive a NVDL citation?
Contact A Florida Traffic Lawyer Immediately
An experienced Florida criminal defense attorney can help keep your driving record clean and prevent you from being branded with a criminal record. He or she can employ a number of defenses to get the charges dropped or the penalties reduced.
You’ll have a much better chance of keeping your record clean and avoiding a conviction with a seasoned traffic lawyer fighting for you.
If you’ve been cited for driving without a valid driver’s license, the first thing you should do is contact a Florida criminal defense law firm. The attorneys at Skubiak & Rivas are prepared to help you fight the charges, avoid the associated penalties, and retain your driving privileges. For a free, no-risk consultation, call us at 407-894-4449 or fill out the form on this page.