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Drive drunk, drive recklessly, and the state can suspend your driver’s license. But many police and motor vehicle administrators worry about a recent trend: A large number of suspensions are for reasons that have nothing to do with unsafe driving.

These reasons include unpaid traffic tickets, falling behind on child support, getting caught with drugs, bouncing checks; or minor juvenile offenses like missing school, using false identification to buy alcohol, or shoplifting.

Increasingly, people who study driver safety say this makes little sense. A study in 2013 from the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators raised concerns that police and state and local motor vehicle officials find too much of their time and budget tied up going after people with suspensions for minor lawbreaking that has nothing to do with safe driving.

Can’t Pay Your Fines? Your License Could Be Taken

Photo credit: Joe Shapiro/NPR

Caption: Desiree Seats, 23, lost her license for two years before she even got it because of an unpaid fine. Without a license, she couldn’t find the jobs she needed to start earning money.