Driving Without A License in New York

by Adam Rosenblum on November 19, 2012

Vehicle and Traffic Law section 509-1 states that if someone is convicted of driving without a license in New York State they will be charged a fine between $75 and $300 and/or 15 days in jail.  Unlicensed Operation of a motor vehicle is a traffic infraction which is not a crime.  Aggravated Unlicensed Operation, i.e. driving on a suspended license, is a misdemeanor; this means that you are being charged with a crime that will be on your criminal record forever as there is no expungement of criminal records in New York State.

Places You Are Permitted to Drive Without A license

You can drive without a license on private property, but you cannot operate a motor vehicle without a valid driver’s license in a shopping center, public parking lot, car wash (includes bring it the vehicle in and out of the carwash), etc.

Lending someone Your Car or License

If you knowingly lend someone without a license your motor vehicle and they get caught by the police and charged with driving without a license you can also be ticketed. In New York State you are not allowed to hold more the one unexpired license at any time.  So it is important to note that it is illegal to lend someone you driver’s license to hold onto or to use as an ID so they can buy cigarettes or alcohol.

Driving a Vehicle Out-Of-Class

Even if you possess a license if you drive a vehicle that you are not permitted to operate, such as a large truck or a motorcycle, you can also be charged with VTL 509.

Driving with A Suspended License

If you are caught driving with a suspended license, even if you are not aware you license is suspended, you will be facing a much more serious offense  call aggravated unlicensed  operation (AUO) as explained above.

Hiring a lawyer

Because of the severity of the offence of driving with a suspended license, it is important to contact a traffic ticket lawyer who can help you fight your ticket to avoid being convicted of a misdemeanor, which is a crime that will be on your record for the rest of your life.

2 thoughts on “Driving Without A License in New York

  1. Hi,I was ticketed because I used my international license to drive but had a New York learners permit,I once used my international license to rent a car and when stopped by a cop in Jersey,I produced that and he had no problem with it so I taught it was ok,if I explain this to the judge what could be the possible outcome of my case.thanks

    Ben on

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