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IN FL WHEN BEING STOPPED BY A COP IS IT ILLEGAL TO NOT SHOW YOUR LICENSE OR REGISTRATION, RATHER GIVE YOUR NAME /ADDRESS ORALLY?

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IN FL WHEN BEING STOPPED BY A COP IS IT ILLEGAL TO NOT SHOW YOUR LICENSE OR REGISTRATION, RATHER GIVE YOUR NAME /ADDRESS ORALLY? Giving that showing your license & or registration can be direct violation of 4th Amendment?? IN WHAT CIRCUMSTANCE MUST YOU PROVIDE YOUR LICENSE OR I.D in FLORIDA???

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Attorney Answers 6

Posted

My colleagues are all spot on. There is no 4th Amendment Violation where a police officer condcts a traffic stop and requests your relelvant driving documents. In fact, as a consequence of your operating a motor vehicle you are required, upon request, to produce 3 items (a driver license, a registration certificate and proof of insurance). Your failure to produce any of these items can result in a non-criminal traffic infraction; but, should you further refuse to sign a citation, then your refusal to sign can result in your being arrested for a 2nd degree misdemeanor (see Florida Statute 318.14). In the event thatthe traffic stop was unlawful (i.e. the officer stopped you illegally, or in violation of case law) then your citations for failure to produce, including you refusal to sign, may be dismissed as what we call the "fruits of the poisonous tree".

In non-driving contexts, absent law enforcement's resaonable (and articulable) suspicion - or probable cause - that you have committed, are about to commit or are in fact committing a violation of law, you are free to reject law enforcement's requests to either speak with you or to present proof of identification.

You should be aware that what happens on the street and what happens in court often prove to be mutually exclusive.... Thatis to say that many a poilice officer resign themselves to the adage that "you can beat the rap but you can't beat the ride". Accordingly, you are almost always best advised to be polite and cooperative, but not to incriminate yourself in the process.

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Posted

Great Answer Mr. Haber! I had no idea it was that serious with citations.

Michael Adam Haber

Michael Adam Haber

Posted

As we say here in the 305... "Con mucho gusto"! Be safe and feel free to ask any question at anytime.

Michael Adam Haber

Michael Adam Haber

Posted

By way of amendment, FS 318.14(2) makes it a 2nd degree misdemeanor to refuse to sign and accept a citation for a criminal traffic matter; apparently this s NOT the case for normal traffic infraction which do not REQUIRE a signature by the driver (they only require a certification by the officer that s/he gave the ticket to the driver). Thus, you cannot be arrested (whether PTA/NTA or taken to jail) for refusal to sign a routine traffic citation; only one which requires your signature (criminal traffic). I am writing this qualification as it was pointed out to me by Kevin Wood (of the Bay Community News) that I had misstated the law (he is absolutely correct in that I did not distinguish between criminal and non-criminal traffic citations) and as I am happy to offer a recant, and apology and a more accurate statement of the law in any such circumstance.

Posted

When stopped by law enforcement for a traffic stop you are required to produce your Driver's License upon request. It is not a violation of the 4th Amendment. If you have a valid license and do not produce it you can be charged with driving without a license.

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Posted

Agree. Thankyou!

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Posted

But Mr. Mcginn, is it illegal to not provide proof of insurance and OR registration??

Asker

Posted

I just moved to FL, every state has different laws..

Posted

Various sovereignty groups have tried this argument in the courts, and so far, they haven't had much luck. The Fourth Amendment argument only applies to searches and seizures the court deems "unreasonable." Courts have found there isn't anything unreasonable about asking to see ID/registration during a traffic stop.

For more information or to set up a free consultation contact the Witt Law at 407-205-WITT (9488). This answer does not, nor is it intended to, create an attorney-client relationship. It is offered for informational purposes only. Please consult with a licensed attorney before making any legal decisions.

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Posted

If asked then feel free to say no. If ordered to do so--like during a traffic stop--then you must show your license with your picture on it. There is a civil statue that requires this. You must show your insurance card and registration too upon demand.

www.BryceFetter.com

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Posted

Thank you Mr. Fetter!

Posted

You are suppose to have these documents on you when you drive. If not it is not criminal, but it is an infraction.

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Posted

Thank you Mr. Randall!

Posted

In Florida when stopped by police you'll be your driver your drivers license proof of insuranc an and registration do your utmost to avoid sovereignty laws or quote tha UCC, yes I've seen pro se litigants do that, as they have no bearing and or Criminal and or Criminal Code.

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Andrew Vincent Coviello Jr.

Andrew Vincent Coviello Jr.

Posted

Forgive typos, problem with android and site. In Florida when stopped by police you will likely be given a citation if you do not promptly provide a valid drivers license, up to date proof of insurance, and a current motor vehicle registration. Do not attempt to quote the UCC as I have seen in court as that does not apply in Florida criminal and traffic courts.

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