Driving without a license

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Driving Without a Valid/Suspended License in Indiana

Discover the consequences of operating a vehicle without a valid driver’s license in Indiana. Similar to other states, Indiana has laws in place that prohibit driving without a license. This article clarifies what constitutes a violation, the potential penalties involved, and the exceptions to this regulation.

Driving Without a License:

In general, anyone operating a motor vehicle on an Indiana highway must possess a valid driver’s license and be able to present it upon request.

Without ever having received a license:

Operating a motor vehicle without ever having received a license can result in a class C misdemeanor conviction. A class C misdemeanor can lead to a maximum of 60 days in jail and a fine of up to $500. A subsequent offense is considered a class A misdemeanor, carrying the potential for up to one year in jail and a maximum fine of $5,000.

Exceptions: Non-resident drivers with valid driver’s licenses from their home state or country can drive in Indiana without obtaining an Indiana license as long as they meet the state’s age requirements. New residents have a 60-day grace period before needing an in-state license. There are exemptions for farmers, military personnel, and road workers under specific circumstances. Additionally, Indiana cities have the authority to regulate the unlicensed use of non-highway vehicles and golf carts, so it’s important to check local ordinances for any exemptions.

License not in immediate possession:

If a driver holds a valid license but fails to have it on hand, they may receive a class C infraction citation and a fine of up to $500. Within five days of receiving the citation, the driver can present a valid driver’s license at the police station to have the citation dismissed.

Refusal to produce a license: A driver with a valid license who refuses to show it upon an officer’s request may be issued a class C traffic infraction citation, potentially leading to a fine of up to $500.

Driving without a license

Driving While Suspended or Revoked:

Individuals who operate a vehicle with a suspended or revoked license may face incarceration and fines. Offense-related suspensions: Many licenses are suspended due to offenses such as DUI convictions. Anyone convicted of driving with a suspended license stemming from such offenses is guilty of a class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and a maximum fine of $5,000.

Other suspensions:

Drivers whose licenses were suspended for reasons like failure to pay child support or tickets face a class A infraction for a first offense, resulting in a fine of up to $10,000. A second offense within ten years escalates to a class A misdemeanor, with a potential fine of $5,000 and a maximum one-year jail sentence.


If a person operating a vehicle with a suspended license causes an injury accident, they can be convicted of a class 5 or 6 felony. Habitual violators caught driving while suspended may also face felony charges.


Indiana no longer directly mandates additional suspension periods for driving while suspended or without a license. Instead, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) is authorized to regulate suspension periods. The BMV currently assigns points for such violations and may subsequently impose a suspension based on the driver’s history.

Need to Speak with a License Suspension Attorney?

If you’re in need of legal assistance regarding driver’s license suspension or have been charged with driving on a suspended license in Indiana, it’s crucial to seek the guidance of a skilled attorney. The driver’s license suspension attorneys at “Alex Mendoza Law” possess extensive expertise and a deep understanding of the BMV system. They are well-equipped to guide you through the necessary steps to safeguard your driving privileges or secure
specialized driving privileges, enabling you to regain your freedom on the road.

Moreover, our Indianapolis criminal defense attorneys boast a wealth of experience in defending clients facing charges of Driving While Suspended in Indiana. They are dedicated to providing you with adept and vigorous legal representation while striving for the most favorable outcome in your case.

If you require legal counsel or have questions about your driver’s license status in Indiana, do not hesitate to contact Alex Mendoza Law. Our team is here to support you in protecting your rights and resolving your legal matters effectively.

At Alex Mendoza Law, LLC, our lawyers are always looking for ways to get an edge over the competition. Whether in the office or in the courtroom, we are working hard on your case.

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About Us

Alex Mendoza Law handles automobile, motorcycle, and semi-truck collisions; slip and falls; and sexual abuse cases. If you’ve been injured or harmed, physically or mentally, because of someone else’s negligence or intentional conduct, let us help! Our skilled attorneys are licensed in Indiana and Illinois, with offices conveniently located in Hammond, Indiana, and downtown Chicago, in the Loop area. Visit alexmendozalaw.com to learn more about our firm, and look at our Google page to see dozens of reviews from satisfied clients.