Nebraska prohibits driving without a valid license and driving while on a suspended license. This article explains what constitutes these violations, the possible penalties, and the exemptions to the license requirement.
Generally, every resident who operates a motor vehicle on a Nebraska highway or alley must carry a valid operator's license while driving.
Driving without a valid license. Unlicensed driving is a class III misdemeanor carrying a fine of up to $500 and a maximum of three months in jail. The driver will also be assessed one point to his or her driving record.
License not in possession. A driver who was issued a license but refuses or is unable to display such license to a requesting officer will be guilty of a misdemeanor. A conviction is punishable by a fine of up to $500 and up to three months in jail but will not result in points against the driver's record. The holder of a farm permit does not need to have the permit in his or her possession but must be able to present a permit within 24 hours.
Exceptions. Non-resident drivers with valid driver's licenses from their home state or country can drive in Nebraska without an in-state license, subject to Nebraska age restrictions. New residents must obtain a Nebraska license within 30 days of moving, but extensions exist for military, student, and temporary agricultural employment.
A person who operates a vehicle while on a withdrawn license is subject to varying penalties depending on the reason for the suspension, the type of license withdrawal, and the number of prior offenses.
Driving while suspended. Generally, driving while suspended is a class III misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of up to $500 and a maximum three months in jail. Persons whose license revocation period has ended but whose license has not yet been reinstated can also be charged with this offense. Persons who have obtained a reinstated license prior to sentencing will be fined no more than $100.
Driving while revoked. Drivers whose license has been revoked or impounded will face increased penalties that include:
Suspended for DUI. Operating a vehicle during a DUI-related suspension is considered a "public nuisance." For this violation, the court can order the vehicle to be impounded for up to 30 days.
Suspended for fatality accident. Driving during suspensions or revocations related to certain offenses like vehicular manslaughter is a serious offense. Driving in violation of these restrictions is a felony and can result in a 15-year revocation period.