Driving without a permit or “No Permit” is a criminal traffic offense that carries a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail or a $300.00 fine. This charge is typically applied to two types of drivers. First, out of state drivers whose licenses have been suspended in their home state who get pulled over can be arrested and charged with No Permit. DC or out of state drivers who have never obtained a driving permit who get pulled over in DC can be arrested and charged with No Permit. A No Permit conviction does carries zero negative license points.
What is the maximum penalty for No Permit in DC?
As previously stated, driving without a permit carries a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail or a $300.00 fine. However, the maximum penalty does not usually tell you much about how a judge would sentence someone for No Permit. Most judges in DC Superior Court are not going to send someone to jail for 90 days for driving without a license. The most likely sentence is something called unsupervised probation. Unsupervised probation typically involves the judge sentencing the defendant to a suspended sentence followed by a period of unsupervised probation. The only requirement for unsupervised probation is for the probationer not to get rearrested.
However, if the probationer is rearrested during the period of unsupervised probation, the judge can sentence the person to the jail time in the original suspended sentence. The most likely scenario for this to occur is where the individual gets rearrested for the same offense while on unsupervised probation.
Does a conviction for No Permit carry points?
No. A conviction for No Permit in DC does not carry any points with the District of Columbia Department of Motor Vehicles. A comprehensive list of what offenses carry points in DC can be found here.
Will the government dismiss the case if I get a license?
The Office of Attorney General for the District of Columbia prosecutes No Permit offenses in DC. The government will often dismiss the charges if the defendant remedies their driver’s license or obtains a valid driver’s license. However, in some cases where the defendant has multiple or repeated arrests for driving without a license, the government will not make this offer. In that situation, the defendant must either plead guilty or take the case to trial.
Can I get my no permit arrest or conviction sealed?
No Permit is an offense that is eligible for sealing for both arrests and convictions. As long as the defendant does not have what the law refers to as a “disqualifying arrest or conviction” after the No Permit charge, the defendant is eligible to seal an arrest or conviction for No Permit. An arrest for No Permit may be sealed 2 years from the date of the dismissal of the case. A conviction may be sealed 8 years after the sentence for No Permit ends. An arrest may be sealed at any time where the defendant can prove by a preponderance of the evidence they were “actually innocent” of the offense.
While driving without a license is not the crime of the century, it is certainly important to consult an attorney if you or a loved one have been arrested. All criminal offenses carry potential jail time and adverse consequences. Contact Scrofano Law PC today for a full case evaluation.