Ask LH: Can I Be Fined For Driving In A Car Park Without A Licence?

Hey Lifehacker, On a recent visit to a hotel with a mate, I decided to shift his car as a prank. I started his car and moved it six spaces over in the same car park. As I pulled in, a police car pulled up behind me, checked my licence and issued a fine as it was expired. Is this really an offence given I never left the car park? Might I be able to challenge the fine on that basis? Thanks, Parking Prankster

Car park picture from Shutterstock

Dear PP,

If you really were shifting your mate’s car as a prank, that’s some pretty awful luck right there. If you were driving it for real and made up this excuse on the spot, I dip my hat to your inventive thinking. Either way, the bad news is that you’re going to have to wear the fine.

Attempting to contest this infringement in in court will almost certainly end badly for you. Even if the magistrate decides to take your word at face value, you were still breaking the law — no ifs or buts.

As we’ve noted in the past, road rules still apply on private roads and road related areas, which includes car parks. It is illegal to drive without a licence in a car park, even if it was only for a few metres. The police were perfectly right to book you.

Our advice is to suck it up and remember to renew your licence in future. You can pick up some general licence renewal tips here.


Have a question you want to put to Ask Lifehacker? Send it using our [contact text=”contact form”].

The Cheapest NBN 50 Plans

Here are the cheapest plans available for Australia’s most popular NBN speed tier.

At Lifehacker, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. We have affiliate and advertising partnerships, which means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. BTW – prices are accurate and items in stock at the time of posting.


15 responses to “Ask LH: Can I Be Fined For Driving In A Car Park Without A Licence?”