It is not any “news” that Uber driver requirements include (as explained on their website):
- a valid driver’s license, and
- a criminal background check.
HOWEVER….it is astounding how many of my clients who set out to be Uber drivers had no idea their license was suspended!
As a Los Angeles traffic ticket attorney, I serve those who have unpaid traffic tickets in collections. I often get contacted regarding an article I wrote that explains why you shouldn’t pay GC Services if you have a suspended license.
As explained below, if you want to become an Uber driver, be careful about how you go about it. Making the wrong move can backfire and have the reverse effect, if you’re not careful.
When Complying with Uber Driver Requirements, Pay Attention
If you reside in LA County and want to drive for Uber, you may have recently discovered your driver’s license is actually suspended, and your case has been referred by the Los Angeles County courthouse to the collections agency called GC Services.
When your ticket goes to collections with GC Services:
- your license gets suspended,
- your ticket fines increase, AND
- you’re charged with a misdemeanor failure to appear under California Vehicle Code 40508.
GC Services, being the collection agency that they are, is concerned with one thing and one thing only: getting your money.
As such, they will often lie to you and tell you there is nothing you can do but pay them and they’ll tell you there is no way you can get another court date – they will even say this when you haven’t even seen the judge yet, which is completely untrue!
GC Services will dangle the carrot of clearing your driver’s license and get you to singularly focus on that. However, the truth of the matter is:
Paying GC Services = misdemeanor on your criminal record +potential point on your DMV record + high fines
Don’t forget there are other Uber driver requirements besides having a valid driver’s license. Uber also conducts a criminal background check and reviews your DMV report to find out what kind of driver you are.
The Best Way to Satisfy the Uber Driver Requirements
If you are taking an Uber after your 2AM taco truck run instead of driving the car, all hope is not lost.
Many of my clients aren’t even aware their license was suspended until (in some cases) two or three years later when they got pulled over for some other unrelated incident, like speeding.
Many of my clients, having been residents of Los Angeles for several years, have gathered a coterie of traffic tickets that are the root cause of the driver’s license suspension.
Don’t Get Suckered by GC Services
You may have received notices from the DMV regarding the suspension of your driver’s license and possibly received calls or letters from the collections agency known as GC Services.
But don’t pay GC Services if you have a suspended license, because there are negative consequences to your criminal record and to your DMV record if you do. In fact, GC Services is no longer collecting for the Los Angeles Superior Court, and the court is now conducting its own colletionst.
But you don’t want to pay court collections either, because that means you are pleading guilty to all charges which includes the failure to appear charge as a misdemeanor on your criminal record as well as DMV points on your DMV record in the case where the underlying traffic ticket was a moving violation (like speeding, crossing over a double yellow line, etc.).
Moreover, you don’t HAVE to pay the ticket to clear the holds from your driver’s license, in the case where the status of your traffic ticket is “failure to appear” (FTA).
Get Your DMV Report First
If you want to know which tickets are holding up your driver’s license, you can download a copy of your California DMV report from the DMV website here. With this information, you can find:
- the citation number
- the court house
- the status of the traffic ticket (FTA or FTP) ***Note: you can only get another court date if your ticket is in FTA status. If your ticket is in “failure to pay” status (also known as FTP or “matters set for compliance”) then you are not entitled to another court date.
You don’t want to listen to what collections says you need to do, because they will even try to get you to pay on tickets that are older than 5 years old.
Whether your ticket is in FTA or FTP status, you don’t have to pay your ticket is older than 5 years old, because of the 5 year dmv purge rule.
So once again, here is a summary of the rules:
- if your ticket is older than 5 years old, whether it’s an FTA or FTP, you don’t have to pay it or fight it in court to clear that hold anymore;
- if your ticket is less than 5 years old and is in FTA status, then you don’t have to pay collections and are still entitled to a court date (AND YOU SHOULD TAKE THIS OPTION);
- if your ticket is less than 5 years old and is in FTP status, this is the only time you have to pay collections – BUT, check with your DMV report to ensure this ticket is holding your license up first because sometimes the court clerk fails to accurately communicate the hold to the DMV and you get let off the hook by accident
Uber Driving Requirements – Get Help from an Attorney
When you need help getting your driver’s license back because it has been suspended or is on hold due to unpaid traffic tickets in LA County, you’re dealing with three agencies (each of whom may be giving you a different story):
- GC Services (the collection agency)
- the DMV, and
- the Court.
As an attorney, I am on your side to help give you the straight answers that are in YOUR best interest – including:
- getting your license back
- fighting your tickets
- preventing points from going on your DMV record, and
- keeping your criminal record clear.
For help, you can call me (Attorney Paul Denni) for a free consultation at 888-250-8450. If you’d like me to contact you, please click the button below.