Is it legal for a police officer to ran tag before being pulled over? 6 Answers as of May 21, 2013

I was driving police was behind me I pulled up in a friends drive way. As I was getting ready to leave, the cop came back and stopped in front of driveway I asked if there was a problem cop said the tag on this car does not belong to this car I explained I just got this car. He wrote 2 tickets 1 for improper registration other for no he ran my tag. Never really even pulled me over... came back to my friends and wrote me tickets.

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The Law Offices of John J. Carney Esq.
The Law Offices of John J. Carney Esq. | John J. Carney
The police were properly doing their job by checking your plates to find that you were driving with no registration, no insurance, and no inspection. You should not be driving without insurance because if you hit someone they will not be able to get paid for their injuries or damages to their vehicle.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 11/3/2012
William C. Gosnell, Attorney at Law
William C. Gosnell, Attorney at Law | William C. Gosnell
Answer Applies to: Tennessee
Replied: 5/21/2013
Dwyer, Black & Lyle, LLP
Dwyer, Black & Lyle, LLP | Kevin Habberfield
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 5/21/2013
Clardy & Tuomey, PLLC
Clardy & Tuomey, PLLC | Elizabeth Tuomey
Unfortunately, yes, it is legal for a police officer to run your tag. The courts have said that there is no right to privacy in the information contained in your tag, so officers are free to run it for any reason or no reason whatsoever. However, whether, you can be convicted of the charges you received is certainly worth pursuing. In addition, if you are convicted of not having insurance, your license will be suspended by DMV, so you must do everything you can to obtain a dismissal of that charge, No insurance is a class 3 misdemeanor in Virginia, not just a traffic ticket. There are forms of an improper registration ticket that are misdemeanors as well, so you should definitely consult with an attorney who practices in your area.
Answer Applies to: Virginia
Replied: 10/26/2012
Rothstein Law PLLC
Rothstein Law PLLC | Eric Rothstein
Yes. A Police Officer can run a license plate check for no reason as you do not have an expectation of privacy in that.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 10/26/2012
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