Top 6 Ways to Lose Your License (and 10 Reasons Not to Drive if You Have)

by Jim Thompson | Last Updated: May 10, 2021

Diamonds may be forever, but a drivers license may not be. It’s easier than you think to get that license taken away. If it’s bad enough, just doing one thing wrong is all it takes to have a license suspended. Below is a list of the most common ways a driver could lose their driving privilege. Unless you are a fan of walking or taking the bus, you might want to read on.

50 Ways to Leave Your Lose Your License

As Paul Simon once said, there must be 50 ways to end a relationship and there are probably at least that many ways to lose your license. for the sake of brevity, we’re just going to cover the top 6.

Exceeding the Point Limit on Your Driving Record

For every accident and traffic violation, points are added to your driving record. Not every state uses this system but, since most do, it would pay to find out. Over time these points accumulate, and if exceed your state’s limit, you’ll lose your license to a suspension. Take care to avoid getting too many points, and consider driver safety courses and other methods of point reduction if your total is approaching the maximum.

When One is Enough

Driving drunk, leaving the scene of an accident, felonies committed behind the wheel, or striking a pedestrian are all infractions that could lead to a “one and done” loss of your license. Of course, with most a license suspension is the least of your worries as all carry substantial fines and the possibility of jail time.

Not Getting It the First Time

A first-time traffic offense is designed to be a reminder of how it is everyone’s responsibility to keep the driving environment state and to kindly remind you to not do whatever it was you did again. however, some people don’t learn from these reminders. They become “habitual offenders” and, unless they break their habits, the state will be more than happy to take their licenses away.

Driving Record Mistakes

Just as with a credit report, clerical errors on a driving record can also be made. This is why both should be checked regularly for accuracy. It doesn’t matter if the points were mistakenly added to your record, if you pass the limit, your license will be suspended. It is your responsibility to keep abreast of this information so check it regularly and bring any discrepancies to the attention of the DMV.

I Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Insurance

Driving without insurance is a sure way to have your license taken away, and it doesn’t take long at all. Many DMV’s have systems in place to let them know when you are driving without insurance and, if you get into an accident without insurance and can’t pay, you’ll likely lose your license, possibly for good.

Not Paying up

Getting a fine or ticket is a pretty big deal, and you’re expected to pay those off. If you forget about them and just don’t pay, you’ll be risking the loss of your license. It’s easy to forget about them, and before you know it you could have your license suspended and be left wondering why it happened.

There are plenty of ways to lose your license, but these are the most common ones. It should come as no surprise that the simplest way to hold onto your license is to diligently strive to be the most skilled and safety-conscious driver you can be.

But What If You’ve Already Lost It?

You should NEVER risk driving with a suspended license. If you do, the penalties are intense. In case you need encouragement, here are ten reasons to stay out from behind the wheel until your license is reinstated.

Reason #10: You will pay hefty fines for driving with a suspended license and much more if you’re a repeat offender.

Reason #9: You will have stricter requirements for reinstating your license, including higher reinstatement fees and/or proof of insurance requirements.

Reason #8: You may be required to complete community service hours. Don’t get us wrong. Doing community service is actually a benefit to everyone, including yourself, and we highly recommend it. However, we want you to do community service out of the goodness of your heart and to do something you’re passionate about and want to use to help others. We don’t want you to have to pick up trash on the side of a busy highway because the officer said you have to…

Reason #7: You’ll get negative points on your driving record that may increase your insurance premiums or make it difficult to get car loans, etc.

Reason #6: You’ll get time added to your license suspension.

Reason #5: You may be required to enroll in rehab or another alcohol or substance abuse recovery program, or defensive driving school. This is also a good thing, but again—we want your attendance at these schools to be voluntary so that you get the most out of them.

Reason #4: You may have your license canceled or revoked altogether.

Reason #3: Your insurance rates will go up—way, way up.

Reason #2: You may get charged with a felony, which has serious legal ramifications, including preventing you from running for office, voting, holding some business licenses, and owning weapons.

Reason #1: You may spend time in jail. Many states even sentence up to one year in prison! Not worth it for a quick ice cream run…

It’s never worth it! If your license has been suspended, do your time. Get a ride!