Getting your driver’s license is a rite of passage for most of us. Having a license allows the freedom and mobility to go where we want, when we want. At the same time, being a licensed driver is a responsibility. In getting a state-issued license, you agree to abide by traffic regulations, to practice driver safety, and to be aware and considerate of your fellow drivers. Failure to do any of those things can result in the loss of your driving privileges. While many people lose their license for practices such as drunk driving and speeding, they still continue to drive. The number of accidents caused by unlicensed drivers is surprisingly high, indicating that for many of these drivers, there are valid reasons the state seeks to prevent them from getting behind the wheel. The dangers these drivers pose present a threat to drivers in South Carolina and across the country.
While Section 56-1-480 of the South Carolina Code of Laws requires all drivers to have a valid license, there are plenty of people on our state highways and roads who do not have a license. While most of these drivers had a license at one point or another it was likely suspended and their driving privileges revoked. According to the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles (SCDMV), the reasons your license can be suspended include being convicted of one of the following charges:
- Driving under the influence
- Operating an uninsured vehicle
- Failure to pay a traffic ticket
- Failure to file an SR-22 certificate, which certifies liability insurance for high risk drivers
In addition to the above, drivers who are considered habitual offenders also face losing their license. A habitual offender is someone with three or more convictions for major driving offenses, or ten or more convictions for moving violations. These violations include all of the above, as well as reckless driving, speeding, and leaving the scene of an accident.
Accidents Caused By Unlicensed Drivers
Statistics show that unlicensed drivers present a significant danger to themselves and others on the road. Studies conducted by the American Automobile Association (AAA) Foundation for Traffic Safety reveal alarming facts about unlicensed drivers:
- Unlicensed drivers are involved in one out of five fatal car accidents
- Almost half of these drivers had a blood alcohol content over the legal limit
- Over 50 percent of unlicensed drivers attempt to flee the scene of an accident
This data would suggest a correlation between drunk driving, hit and run accidents, and unlicensed drivers. Efforts by law enforcement in some states to prevent unlicensed drivers from disregarding the law and driving anyway include impounding vehicles belonging to these drivers until their license has been reinstated.
Contact Our Office Today for Assistance
If you or a loved one has been hurt or injured in a car accident with an unlicensed driver, contact the Anastopoulo Law Firm right away. Our experienced South Carolina car accident attorneys will hold the guilty parties responsible for the damage they have caused, and will help you get the compensation you deserve for your injuries.