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-   -   Would u drive in LA or california without driver's license? (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/california/1546408-would-u-drive-la-california-without-drivers-license.html)

mohitmadaan Jan 29, 14 1:15 am

Would u drive in LA or california without driver's license?
 
So, i am from another country (India) and visiting LA on saturday morning. I will be there for 3 nights and leaving tuesday morning.

yesterday, i lost my driver's license in india and it is impossible to get a new one for next 4 days and i have to leave on friday.

The first problem i thought was going to be getting a rental car, but i called some ads from craigslist and they are ok renting a car with a photo copy of my license.

Now, i am here with a car at LAX and booked a hotel in Beverly hills... Going to be playing poker at the casinos each night so driving back and forth from hotel at odd hours, plus driving to the beach and some tourist stuff.

At all the times, i will have everything i need except the original of my indian driver's license... i will only have a photo copy.

Would u take that chance? what is the risk?

last 3-4 trips i am in California, i am never checked on any document by any cop. I don't drink and drive ever

Need Jan 29, 14 12:24 pm

Don't know what will the cop do if you only have a photocopy of the driver license. But I can tell you that in Los Angeles, if the cop caught you driving a car without any driver license at all, your car will be impounded. The registered owner has to come to pick it up and it will about around $500+ in fines and fees.

SWCPHX Jan 29, 14 7:06 pm

I am a little shocked that somebody would rent a car to another based on a photocopied driver's license. They are assuming a huge liability IMHO if the OP should be involved in an accident.

cbn42 Jan 31, 14 10:47 pm

If you are caught driving with only a photocopy of your license, you will receive a ticket for driving unlicensed. You will need to go to court and show the judge your valid license in order to get the charge reduced to driving without possession of license, which is less serious and usually just a small fine. I don't think that such a charge will delay your exit from the country, but if you fail to take care of it (or hire a lawyer to do so) then it may complicate your re-entry.

With that said, the chances of getting caught are small, but remember that it is possible to be involved in an accident that is completely someone else's fault no matter how well you drive. It is up to you if you want to take the risk.

ranles Feb 4, 14 6:29 pm

Call the California Highway Patrol and ask them.

mikew99 Feb 4, 14 9:46 pm

No way would I rent a car (as either a borrower or a lender) from Craiglist, and no way would I think it possible to rent a car without a driver's license. When they say that you can find anything on Craigslist, they weren't kidding!

dhuey Feb 5, 14 1:56 pm


Originally Posted by SWCPHX (Post 22249229)
I am a little shocked that somebody would rent a car to another based on a photocopied driver's license. They are assuming a huge liability IMHO if the OP should be involved in an accident.

No kidding. I have no reason to doubt that the OP is honest and responsible, but it's amazing to me that someone would turn their car over to a visiting foreign national they don't know personally. It's risky enough doing that with a friend who lives across town. The car owner is liable for any damage that car does, and cars can do quite a bit of damage.

MSPeconomist Feb 9, 14 5:43 pm

You might try asking AAA as they seem to have expertise in local laws relating to driving, but I would assume that driving in the USA without a license would invalidate any insurance, including any required state coverage, and could result in jail if caught. A lot might depend on the technicality of whether having lost the license in India means just that you don't have the original or means that you can't legally drive before the document is replaced.

Getting competent legal advice in this situation could be more hassle and cost more than a bunch of taxi fares in the LA area.

mohitmadaan Feb 23, 14 8:21 pm

Just want to update the thread as i return back from my trip to california. Fortunately, i got my license the day i was about to fly so i had the original new license with me. I rented a car from alamo in both LA and San francisco... On about 8th day of my trip, i got pulled over by a cop in City of Stockton. I had photo copy of my license in my dashboard, the cop asked me for license and i gave him that photo copy, he immediately responded... Do you have a original? I was like, sure... and i gave him original with my passport.... He returned after couple of mins saying, you are good to go...

The reason i gave him photo copy was to see if that works, i think it won't... So its kinda confirmed.

I got pulled over because i was driving without lights on at about 8 Pm.

Overall, i feel good that i didn't end up driving without the originals.

Thanks for the answers everybody


Originally Posted by dhuey (Post 22292630)
No kidding. I have no reason to doubt that the OP is honest and responsible, but it's amazing to me that someone would turn their car over to a visiting foreign national they don't know personally. It's risky enough doing that with a friend who lives across town. The car owner is liable for any damage that car does, and cars can do quite a bit of damage.

Well, as they say... you can buy anything in the world, if you pay the price.

People now a days are just willing to take all the risk i guess for couple of hundred dollars.

abmj-jr Feb 23, 14 8:49 pm


Originally Posted by mohitmadaan (Post 22404496)
... the cop asked me for license and i gave him that photo copy, he immediately responded... Do you have a original? I was like, sure... and i gave him original with my passport.... He returned after couple of mins saying, you are good to go...

I am long retired but that is about the way I would have handled that stop back in the day. I might have been a bit suspicious about being offered the copy first and would have checked everything a little closer. Glad you had the original so no hassles.

MrWallace Feb 26, 14 5:06 am

my friend forgot his license (dumbass) so we made a photocopy and put it in a plastic holder. Maybe because we are foreigners they did not pay attention but we had no problems :)

frontrangeFF Mar 17, 14 2:27 pm

I wouldn't do it, there is just to much risk involved.


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