You Don’t Need A Florida License, unless…

My phone has been ringing off the hook with people that have been charged for not having a Florida Driver’s License. It seems that police are mistakenly charging people with the criminal offense even when they don’t need a license.

If you are visiting Florida from another state or from another country your driver’s license issued out-of-state (or in the other country) will work just fine to allow you to drive here.

However, Florida requires that you get a Florida Driver’s License if you work in Florida or have kids enrolled in school here. If you are married to someone who works here or who has children enrolled in school here, you will need one too.

Florida Law allows thirty days from the start of work or from when they enrolled their kids in school to get licensed.

If you are charged and get a Florida License, then the State generally dismisses the charge because of your compliance. If you go back to your out-of-state/ country home and don’t come to court, you will probably get a warrant and could be arrested next time you come to Florida or possibly in any state.

Failure to have a Florida License when required is a second degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 60 days in the county jail and up to a $500 fine.

If you hire an attorney, it is possible to resolve the matter and explain that you aren’t required to have a Florida Driver’s License. If you have been wrongfully charged, call us, 305-665-3978.

I’ve included Florida statute 322.031 for your reference.

About Matthew Ladd

Federal Criminal Attorney practicing in Miami-Dade County with our office in Coral Gables. Matthew Ladd is a former prosecutor with the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office. He is a graduate of Syracuse University College of Law and received his bachelor's degree from Marshall University.

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