How Do You Get a Hardship License?
Oct 22, 2019 10:40 PM EDT
If you have been charged and convicted of Operating Under the Influence (OUI) in Massachusetts, then you will have your driver's license suspended as part of your punishment. Depending on how many OUI convictions you have on your criminal record, the suspension can range from 1 year (first OUI conviction) to a lifetime ban (fourth OUI). If you are convicted of your first, second, or third OUI in Massachusetts, then you may be able to request that you have limited driving privileges granted after fulfilling a required amount of time for your suspension.
This is called a hardship license, and it is granted to people who are able to prove that they need to be able to drive on a limited basis in order to avoid a significant hardship. In Massachusetts, you will have a hearing with the Registry of Motor Vehicles in order to prove that this is the case. Massachusetts will only consider hardships relating to employment, education, or medical reasons as legitimate needs for a hardship license. In order to make sure that you have the best chances of being approved for this type of license, you should work with an experienced team like Brian Simoneau Law Firm.
Applying for a Hardship License in Massachusetts
There are a variety of factors that will go into your ability to apply for a hardship license with a reasonable chance of being accepted, starting with completing a certain amount of your initial suspension. For your first OUI, your license will be suspended for 1 year, and you must complete 3 months of the suspension before being able to apply.
If you have been convicted of two OUIs, then your license will be suspended for 2 years, and you must complete 1 year of the suspension. For your third, an 8-year suspension requires 2 years served, and a fourth comes with a 10-year suspension and requires 5 years served. If you are convicted of a fifth OUI, your license will be permanently revoked with no chance of a hardship license.
Once you have completed the required suspension time, you can request a hardship license hearing through the RMV. During this hearing, you will need to submit all of the relevant evidence to prove that you are truly facing a hardship. Keep in mind that the RMV is under no obligation to issue you a restricted license, so it is important that you have a solid and compelling argument. If you have easy access to public transportation that can get you to and from your work, medical appointments, or school, this could impact your ability to be approved. There are a variety of other things that you will need to consider, as well.
Requirements Of a Hardship License
If you are granted a "Cinderella license," you will have a variety of restrictions that you need to adhere to in order to remain compliant. The first thing that you will need to do is to install an Ignition Interlock Device in your vehicle, which is a device that requires you to take a breath alcohol test before the vehicle can be started. In addition, you will have a schedule of when you are legally able to drive in order to get to and from your appointments, classes, or work. Operating your vehicle outside of these hours will come with serious consequences.
Depending on the specifics of your situation, there may be additional requirements as well. If you are working with an attorney during your application process, they will be able to make sure that you understand all of the limitations that you must honor.