Is Expired Registration a Moving Violation In PA?

Registration Violation in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania is the fifth most populous state in the US by human population and seventh by registered vehicles. Pennsylvania takes its road laws seriously and metes out appropriate sanctions and fines to defaulters. The penalties and sanctions are put in place to keep road users in check while protecting pedestrians.

With many road users present in Pennsylvania, traffic violations have become a more common occurrence than in the past. There are different grades of traffic violations and equivalent penalties. Some traffic violations are mild and attract only a minor penalty, while some are grave and can cost you your license, thousands of dollars in fines, and even jail time.

Types of Traffic Violation in PA

There are two main types of traffic violations in PA:

  • Moving violations
  • Non-moving violations


Moving Violations

As the word connotes, moving violations seem like violations a driver can commit while driving. However, the better way to put it is violations that can only be detected when the vehicle is in motion. For example, over speeding. Moving violations are usually more severe and attract a higher degree of sanctions when compared with non-moving violations.

Examples of moving violations include failure to yield when stopped by police patrol vehicles, going above speed limits, failure and inappropriate use of turn signals, running a red light, having an open container of alcohol in the moving vehicle, defying road signs, especially around schools and zebra crossings, driving while impaired and driving with broken headlights. Moving violations like making an improper turn or not stopping completely at a red light are minor violations and only attract a mild consequence.

Non-Moving Violations

Non-moving violations are usually regarded as traffic laws broken by a stationary car. This is not entirely true; it can also involve violations while the vehicle is in motion. Most non-moving violations are related to defective vehicle equipment, parking negligence, and the defective quality of your car.

Obvious examples of non-moving violations include parking in inappropriate places, defective vehicle equipment, and parking to obstruct the function of a hydrant. Other less obvious non-moving violations include:

  • Driving without a registration card or insurance.
  • Driving without a seat belt.
  • Driving with a broken taillight.


The less obvious moving violations occur while the vehicle is in motion.

The main difference between moving and non-moving violations is that moving violations usually affect your driving records. Frequent moving violations will accumulate points in your driving records. Depending on the gravity of offenses, you may risk losing your license or paying considerably higher fees for your insurance. Non-moving violations usually have no effects on your driving records in the state of Pennsylvania; in other states like Washington, it is recorded in your driving history but does not affect insurance rates. The penalties associated with non-moving violations are usually not as harsh as those for moving violations. The penalties attached to traffic violations are directed at making the road safer for other vehicle users and pedestrians.

Is Expired Registration a Moving Violation in Pa?

Based on the definition of moving and non-moving traffic violations, driving with expired registration is not a moving violation in Pennsylvania. Although it occurs while driving, it is a non-moving traffic violation. In Pennsylvania, the supreme court ruled that driving with an expired registration in PA is not a breach of peace and does not count for a moving violation. In many other states of the US, driving with an expired registration does not also count for a moving violation.

Although driving with an expired registration is not a moving violation and may not add points to your license, it comes with sanctions and fines. Penalties can be as high as double the fees for renewing registration on the vehicle in Pennsylvania. The penalties are dependent on several factors - if the driver has had other uncleared traffic violations in their records, or police officers pulled the car over 60 or more days after the registration expires, then facing higher fines and sanctions is inevitable.

In conclusion, most moving traffic violations are committed when the vehicle is in motion; however, some non-moving violations occur when the car is in motion. A good example is driving with an expired license. The idea behind the fines is to make driving in PA a safe experience while protecting its citizens. As a non-moving violation, it does not add points to your license but can have you paying fines. If you have unsettled traffic violation cases in the past, it can significantly increase the amount paid as fines.

You may also face a possibly short jail time if your offenses are serious. Instead of driving with an expired registration, you can easily renew it using Swift-tags' online platform. Swift-tags.com takes away all the complexity of renewing your registration, and you can complete the process online within minutes.


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