Driving without a licence and driving whilst disqualified are two separate offences under the law, the latter carrying the more serious penalties of the two.
The penalties for this offence can vary but will range from between 3 and 6 penalty points and a fine of up to £1000. You may also be disqualified from driving.
When you pass a driving test you are allowed to drive certain types of vehicle only. Additional driving tests have to be passed to enable you to drive additional vehicles, such as heavy goods vehicles, motorbikes, buses or other passenger carrying vehicles.
If you have a conventional driving licence for a car, and you drive a vehicle that you have no entitlement to drive, then you can be prosecuted for driving without a licence (with the potential penalties noted above).
If you are a learner driver with a provisional licence, you are required to:
If you drive without meeting these conditions, then you can be held liable for driving without a licence.
In addition to the above, if you drive without a licence or the incorrect licence, then in all likelihood your motor insurance will be invalid, and you could face an additional prosecution for driving without insurance.
Driving whilst disqualified is a more serious offence and carries 6 penalty points and a fine of up to £5000, a further period of disqualification, possible community service and in some cases possible imprisonment for up to 6 months.
Driving whilst disqualified is an arrestable offence, meaning that you will be immediately taken to the police station for questioning and processing. It is critical that you contact us at this point so that we can represent you during the police interview process.
Owing to the seriousness of this offence you will need a solicitor with specialist knowledge in this area who can assess your case and help you to prepare your defence, and also show the Court evidence of any special reasons which may mitigate against the eventual penalty imposed.
You do not need a solicitor to represent you at Court, but would be well advised to consider obtaining one, and particularly if your case is complicated and/or you think you might want to plead not guilty. A Court will not be impressed by someone with little understanding of the law trying to defend himself based on hearsay and incorrect advice.
A solicitor with specialist knowledge and experience of motoring law will offer you the best chance of achieving a favourable outcome in your case.
Contact us to speak to one of our solicitors and to find out how we can help you.