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Thread: Unlicensed driving on IDP

  1. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by haildamage View Post
    congratulations, did they issue a DL?!?
    Yes they did! No questions asked! So I guess no record of my unlicensed driving yet. I was actually nervouse if they would just temp me to see the card but eventually gave it to me without any fuss!

  2. #42
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    Congrats.

    It may do you well to contact a lawyer, inform them of your situation, and let them know that you now have a full JP license. Most places in Japan have free legal advice services in English. Check with your local international center.

  3. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by dmizer View Post
    Congrats.

    It may do you well to contact a lawyer, inform them of your situation, and let them know that you now have a full JP license. Most places in Japan have free legal advice services in English. Check with your local international center.
    thanks will do! That's what I've been working on so far, all I found charges for 1st 30 minutes.

  4. #44

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    Now time to work on that Oogata license asap! Any driving schools you recommend to practice?

  5. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by blinker182 View Post
    Now time to work on that Oogata license asap! Any driving schools you recommend to practice?
    Your accident was in a car, correct? So, I highly suggest holding off on the unlimited bike license, or any bike license. The odds are very very high that you're going to get your license revoked once the legal process has completed. You're better off waiting until your license is restored before bothering with oogata.

    Rest assured, they have not forgotten about you, and this isn't going to just go away conveniently or without a lot of money. Save your money for paying for lawyers and the impending fine you'll have to pay.

    The only way this will go away without a lot of money is if the police were able to satisfy the 90 days requirement, which from what you've written here is unlikely.

  6. #46

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    I'd also like to think that the police may look at this in a more liberal light.
    Fact: He was driving without a Japanese licence. Yes, however he is not a pimply arsed youth who has never had any kind of licence. He is a holder of an IDP, meaning he holds a licence in an IDP partnership country. It was a mere oversight on his behalf to have gone over expiry date. I know the law of having to resit your licence if letting the expiry date lapse, but this is only for Japanese licences which he didn't have at time of infringement.

    Although I strongly doubt he will be deported, I suggest (like others) to get a lawyer and get a glowing character/work reference from your employer. My sixth sense feels you could only be in for a fine.

    I wish you luck Ocker,

  7. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by pigpen View Post
    I'd also like to think that the police may look at this in a more liberal light.
    Fact: He was driving without a Japanese licence. Yes, however he is not a pimply arsed youth who has never had any kind of licence. He is a holder of an IDP, meaning he holds a licence in an IDP partnership country. It was a mere oversight on his behalf to have gone over expiry date. I know the law of having to resit your licence if letting the expiry date lapse, but this is only for Japanese licences which he didn't have at time of infringement.

    Although I strongly doubt he will be deported, I suggest (like others) to get a lawyer and get a glowing character/work reference from your employer. My sixth sense feels you could only be in for a fine.

    I wish you luck Ocker,

    Hello, my IDP is new, my first IDP in Japan. The police at the only time of my interogation said they confirmed by IDP is valud but in Japan it is invalidated because I did not stay more than 3 months when I got it.

    Still no word from them up to this day. I hope they'll let me celebrate holidays with my license. I'll keep you guys updated next year when I hear back from them (I hope not).

  8. #48

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    So it's been a couple weeks after new years and haven't heard back from them (been waiting for more than 2 months now to hear back from the police). One foreign guy I spoke he had the same issue a decade ago and the police never contacted him after that - he said he was also in limbo for a few months until he forgot about it. Does anybody know how long do you usually wait before they formally charge you with something? The lawyer I spoke to said the police in some cases, if on their initial investigation found you are not a nuisance nor have any history in japan they just let you off the hook.

    On another forum, last year a guy of same nationally who got involved in an accident almost same as mine (he was not at fault 100%) got charged when the other party's insurance demanded a police report.Somebody rear ended the car he rented but because both parties were not aware they needed to call the police even without causing injuries they just exchanged contact info since both are in a hurry and contacted insurance. When insurance was processing things, they demanded a police report from both parties so both parties went to a police station to tell their story. Police made a report (foreigner on IDP) and they gave it to insurance. A few days afterwards the police called the foreigner and asked him to go back to the station to clear some things up. Little did he know he was called back to get arrested because he was using IDP (without staying out of japan for 3 months). He was asked to make an apology letter then took a month before he got charged officially and banned from getting a license for 2 years. I suppose the letter he made was a confession letter instead of apology to speed things up for the police.

  9. #49
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    probably nobody knows how long before you can feel safe. I wouldn't think you can relax just yet. Fingers crossed for you but if I had to bet, I would bet that it won't just go away.

    Confession/Apology letter - its not such a complicated case and there really isn't any disputing or proving that the law was broken by either of you, so I wouldn't call it a confession. I would recommend writing the apology letter and completely cooperating if it comes to that!

    Keep us posted please!


  10. #50
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    I posted this link earlier, but I'm going to link it again because you should read every single post from start to finish carefully because it's your exact situation. Here's the thread: http://www.gaijinriders.com/showthre...lot-of-trouble

    From the time chief2001 got in his accident (September of 2012) to the time he was assessed his 19 points and revoked license, it was about 10 months.

  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedSquare View Post
    Don't ask us idiots. Get a lawyer.
    Very good advice. If nothing else, a lawyer will get you answers pronto.
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  12. #52
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    No matter what you are guilty. You will not go to jail unless you don't pay the fine. You will not get deported if you play nice.

    Getting your Japanese licence wont mtter, the offense was prior

    For what its worth, I had the same charge, driving without a licence, resulting from riding a 1100cc bike with a 400cc licence. no accident, a speed trap, 10 klms over.
    I had a Japanese licence, just the wrong class. Silly me didn't think it was a biggy.
    2 interviews with the prosecutor's office, over 2 months.

    Your choices

    1. Electing not guilty and you go to court, becomes a criminal matter. Which can be held up during visa, or PR process. You will be found guilty, no doubt

    2. Apologizing and accepting the prosecutor's, choice of penalty, without it going on record as a criminal matter. Maximum fine 500,000

    In my case 420,000 yen fine & 1 years suspension from making a licence application, licence revoked.
    I was not able to transfer my existing foreign bike licence, ( could for the car ) over I had to sit the Japanese licence. Plus a two day safety course 70,000 yen after I got the ogatta.
    These where conditions imposed by the prick prosecutor, at the time Isihara was in, and it was suggested to me that there was a top down thing to come down on Gaijin.
    So I doubt your penalties will be so harsh.

    This was 6 yrs ago now, they consider this to be quite a serious offence, but if you're luck in and get a reasonable prosecutor, who knows? Mine was an a class prick. I have Japanese friends who'd only been fined 30,000 for the same offence, with no loss of licence in the years before.

    Takes a while for the papers to get forwarded to the prosecutor. I think the main thing with yours is they wont like that you had a fender bender, which negates any insurance. you'll need to kiss arse when that comes up.

  13. #53

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    Quote Originally Posted by wrk2ride_ride2wrk View Post
    No matter what you are guilty. You will not go to jail unless you don't pay the fine. You will not get deported if you play nice.

    Getting your Japanese licence wont mtter, the offense was prior

    For what its worth, I had the same charge, driving without a licence, resulting from riding a 1100cc bike with a 400cc licence. no accident, a speed trap, 10 klms over.
    I had a Japanese licence, just the wrong class. Silly me didn't think it was a biggy.
    2 interviews with the prosecutor's office, over 2 months.

    Your choices

    1. Electing not guilty and you go to court, becomes a criminal matter. Which can be held up during visa, or PR process. You will be found guilty, no doubt

    2. Apologizing and accepting the prosecutor's, choice of penalty, without it going on record as a criminal matter. Maximum fine 500,000

    In my case 420,000 yen fine & 1 years suspension from making a licence application, licence revoked.
    I was not able to transfer my existing foreign bike licence, ( could for the car ) over I had to sit the Japanese licence. Plus a two day safety course 70,000 yen after I got the ogatta.
    These where conditions imposed by the prick prosecutor, at the time Isihara was in, and it was suggested to me that there was a top down thing to come down on Gaijin.
    So I doubt your penalties will be so harsh.

    This was 6 yrs ago now, they consider this to be quite a serious offence, but if you're luck in and get a reasonable prosecutor, who knows? Mine was an a class prick. I have Japanese friends who'd only been fined 30,000 for the same offence, with no loss of licence in the years before.

    Takes a while for the papers to get forwarded to the prosecutor. I think the main thing with yours is they wont like that you had a fender bender, which negates any insurance. you'll need to kiss arse when that comes up.
    Yeah, that probably why it is taking soo long. The insurance part is done a couple weeks after the accident. No compensation from both parties since there are literally no damages.
    One guy I spoke with was caught answering his phone while driving on an invalid IDP on the same prefecture from a nearby city. He wasn't fined anything but was just banned from getting a license for 1 year. Then had to go to a driving school to get it. He told me that the police probably won't get back to me because if they would , they would already have at least began calling me to talk to the prosecutor. He waited 3 weeks before he got his verdict. Another guy who was caught stealing a parked bike (police bait) was arrested and was told they will get back to him and even call his father.They never got a call even after waiting so many years. I'll keep you guys posted.

  14. #54

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    Quote Originally Posted by haildamage View Post
    probably nobody knows how long before you can feel safe. I wouldn't think you can relax just yet. Fingers crossed for you but if I had to bet, I would bet that it won't just go away.

    Confession/Apology letter - its not such a complicated case and there really isn't any disputing or proving that the law was broken by either of you, so I wouldn't call it a confession. I would recommend writing the apology letter and completely cooperating if it comes to that!

    Keep us posted please!
    Hello, from what I understand it took 10 months for him which is sad but at least in the first month or two he got contacted to actually "investigate" who's fault was it etc or get questioned and their statements taken. In my case, the insurance were involved but no one shelled cash as there was no damage on both parties and no one is chasing for other damages. I mean if they really find me guilty they could have started the process since their evidence is soo strong. The lawyer I spoke to didn't give me a concrete answer. He said sometimes, if the police found you are not a meiwaku and there is too much effort involved in a case where no one is injured nor damage they just let it slip off and the right for speedy trial but only applies on criminal cases I guess.

    Mind you, another person I spoke to after my accident, which I warned not to drive on IDP still continued driving on IDP in central tokyo. He was caught beating a red light and presented his invalid IDP. He was just told by the tokyo police to get a jp license and was let go without any fuss. They were more concerned on why he was carrying a baseball bat in the trunk (which I think many people do here) He was surprised that he was let go and was scared as hell as he badly needed to drive to transport his ailing mother back and fourth to the doctor. They just took note of his gaijin card. I will keep you all posted still. I am going to ask another lawyer soon and let you know what he says.

  15. #55

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    Update:

    The other lawyer said, the standard wait for contact is 3 months. I'll keep you guys posted

  16. #56

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    The police are not really interested in proving anyone innocent. They are solely concerned with catching you, if you were illegal.
    Always keep that in mind. Be polite, but do not ever think they are looking out for your interest. Do not offer more information
    than is requested and always play devils advocate on any information you offer ( mull it over as to how it could be used before providing it ).

    Last year had a few incidents with police and customers with IDP's. Always a pain in the neck. On one occasion they threaten our business
    at which point we told them we can no longer talk to them and we suggest they contact our lawyer. The tone instantly
    changed and they lost the threats and give us the info they should have in the first place and we helped out.

    The police can be vindictive. In another case i cannot provide details on, the police were not acting on the law at all,
    but were applying a punishment of their own concoction.
    Apexmoto Inc - Dyno tuning, engine/chassis/suspension upgrades, repairs, shaken, tires & changing with balancing, graphics printing, stickers, media blasting, painting & powder coating.

  17. #57

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jav View Post
    The police are not really interested in proving anyone innocent. They are solely concerned with catching you, if you were illegal.
    Always keep that in mind. Be polite, but do not ever think they are looking out for your interest. Do not offer more information
    than is requested and always play devils advocate on any information you offer ( mull it over as to how it could be used before providing it ).
    \.
    According to the lawyer, there is what is called Statute of Limitations. While indeed it is true that the police are not really interested in proving anyone innocent, it boils down to your past criminal history or association with a past crime according to the lawyer. It is highly possible for the police to let you off the hook if it is your first time and you never had any record whatsoever than a guy who was caught stealing, causing nuisance etc. But then again, there is no assurance to what he said, just an observation.

    Also interestingly: If they let go of rape, murder etv which are crimes considered henious, I will be happy if they let this off the hook too.

    http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/201...ers-120-rapes/

    I will continue providing updates no matter what the outcome is.

  18. #58

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    Quote Originally Posted by blinker182 View Post
    Makes me wonder why I got a car registration if my IDP was invalid. I thought a valid license was a requirement for car registration.
    Car shops are not experts on international license laws. Neither are they required to validify licenses. They can
    sell cars for many reasons ( investments, off-road, export etc ). At the end of the day you are responsible for
    making sure you are legal.

    Lost my license a few years back. Took a few months for them to call me in. These things can take time.

    Good luck. I think it will not be so bad as the climate in Japan re foreigners, is much better these days.
    Last edited by Jav; 25-01-17 at 08:54 PM.
    Apexmoto Inc - Dyno tuning, engine/chassis/suspension upgrades, repairs, shaken, tires & changing with balancing, graphics printing, stickers, media blasting, painting & powder coating.

  19. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jav View Post
    Car shops are not experts on international license laws. Neither are they required to validify licenses. They can
    sell cars for many reasons ( investments, off-road, export etc ). At the end of the day you are responsible for
    making sure you are legal.

    Lost my license a few years back. Took a few months for them to call me in. These things can take time.

    Good luck. I think it will not be so bad as the climate in Japan re foreigners, is much better these days.
    May I ask how manh months exactly before they contacted you until you got license revoked?
    or at least how manh months before they exactly formally charged you. Because in my case on my next 2-3 returns would be about investigation and made it clear after that would be decision if i need to go to court or summary court.

  20. #60
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    I have been through this before, and I came out the other side without any scrapes.

    Feel free to PM me if you would like the low down.

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