Driving Without a License in Kansas

What does it mean to drive while your license is expired, revoked, suspended or cancelled?

What does it mean to “drive without a license” in Kansas?

Driving without a license can refer to three scenarios. You’re stopped for an offense and:

  • You have a license but it’s not in your possession. In other words, you were licensed to drive but lacked proof, an infraction that may be dismissed once you can prove that you possessed a valid license at the time of the incident. (Note: you may have to pay a fine.)
  • You never applied for a license (or your license expired). Kansas Statute § 8-235 states, " No person, except those expressly exempted, shall drive any motor vehicle upon a highway in this state unless such person has a valid driver's license." The punishment for this Class B misdemeanor offense is typically a fine.
  • Your license was cancelled, revoked or suspended by the authorities. This offense is punishable (as a first offense) as a Class B misdemeanor with a fine and maximum of 6 months in jail. The license suspension may be increased an additional 90 days. A second offense is punishable as a Class A misdemeanor with a maximum one year jail term and $2,500 fine.

Who doesn’t have to have a valid Kansas driver’s license?

Kansas Statute § 8-236 exempts the following persons from having to possess a valid Kansas license:

  • A nonresident who is at least 16 years of age and who has in such person's immediate possession a valid license issued to such nonresident in such person's home state or country may operate in this state any motor vehicle in class C or M;
  • a nonresident who is at least 18 years of age and who has in such person's immediate possession a valid license issued to such nonresident in such person's home state or country which authorizes such person to operate any motor vehicle in class A or class B, as designated in K.S.A. 8-234b, and amendments thereto, may operate any such motor vehicle in this state, subject to the age limits applicable in this state to the operation of any type or class of vehicle operated by such person;
  • any nonresident who is at least 18 years of age, whose home state or country does not require the licensing of drivers, may operate any motor vehicle in class C or class M, as designated in K.S.A. 8-234b, and amendments thereto, for a period of not more than 90 days in any calendar year, if the motor vehicle so operated is duly registered in the home state or country of such nonresident;
  • any person while driving or operating during the hours between sunrise and sunset any farm tractor or implement of husbandry, from the farm residence to a field farmed in connection with such farm residence, or from one farm field to another.

How do you fight the charge?

Fighting a “driving without a license charge” can be difficult. Once the district attorney or prosecutor alleges that you drove without a valid license, the burden of proof is on you to prove that you did possess a valid driver’s license at the time of your offense. If you don’t evidence of a license, you lose! Depending on your circumstances, you may benefit from the advice or negotiating skills of an attorney.

Can an undocumented immigrant obtain a driver’s license in Kansas?

An undocumented immigrant is not permitted to obtain a driver's license in Kansas. 

 

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