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Oakland Personal Injury Lawyer / Blog / Car Accident / Why California Motorists Drive Without A License

Why California Motorists Drive Without A License


The vast majority of motorists comply with driver’s license laws and would never consider getting behind the wheel of a vehicle without this important card in their wallet. Like you, many of them know the consequences of breaking the law. According to the California Vehicle Code, it is illegal for a person to knowingly drive when his or her driving privileges have been revoked or suspended. More than just a traffic citation, this offense is a misdemeanor that could lead to 6 months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Unfortunately, the penalties are not enough to dissuade some motorists from driving without a valid license. Worse, when they cause a crash, they are more likely to leave the scene because of the legal implications. You may still have legal remedies after a hit and run, and an Oakland car accident attorney can explain your options. It is also helpful to know the reasons why people drive without a license in California. 

License Suspended or Revoked

Because driving is a privilege extended by the state, it can be taken away for misconduct. A conviction for DUI is one of the most common reasons for a driver’s license suspension, and a related one is refusing to submit to a chemical test in violation of California’s implied consent law. Additional grounds for suspending driving privileges include:

  • Not having auto insurance in an accident;
  • A finding of delinquency or conviction for underage drinking;
  • Failing to appear in court for a traffic violation;
  • Accumulating too many points on a driver’s record through unsafe driving;
  • Not filing an accident report when required by law; and
  • Failing to pay child support. 

Options in Hit and Run Crashes

For those driving without a license in violation of the law, it is sometimes not a stretch to commit another crime by leaving the scene. However, there are tactics for conducting an investigation and tracking this person down. Businesses in close proximity to the crash may have installed security cameras, and the footage may help identify the hit and run motorist. Plus, witness accounts may be helpful. Even the first few digits of the license plate may help identify the vehicle. From there, you can make a formal request for contact information and pursue the at-fault driver.

In addition, your own auto insurance policy may be an option for obtaining compensation. If you opted for Med Pay, you might recover for reasonable, necessary medical costs. Motorists who purchase uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM) might also seek amounts for medical treatment, lost wages, and pain and suffering under their own insurance policy even if the at-fault driver involved in the hit and run is never found. Unless you specifically waived UM/UIM, your policy may include this coverage. 

Our Oakland Car Accident Lawyers Will Assist with Your Remedies 

If you were hurt in a hit and run, it is critical to get legal help with the complicated process. To learn more, please contact Venardi Zurada, LLP to schedule a complimentary case review regarding your options. We can meet with you at our offices in Oakland or Walnut Creek, CA to discuss strategies for recovering compensation.



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