Can I get a Hardship License after a Drunk Driving Arrest
When people are arrested and convicted for drunk driving they often will have a corresponding license suspension. Most often people want to know how they can get their license back. Attorney Gilman is a was a RMV Hearing Officer and can advise you on obtaining for hardship license.
Can I get a Hardship License before the criminal case is resolved?Unfortunately, no. The first requirement for applying for a hardship or work license at the RMV is that all the criminal matters must be resolved. Whether you resolve the case by plea or by being found guilty at trial, you cannot have any open criminal matters related to the OUI arrest.
What is a Hardship License?A Hardship License is a license that only a RMV Hearing Officer or the Division of Insurance Board of Appeals can award to individuals suspended for OUI in the Commonwealth. The license is good for a twelve hour window, seven days a week. We use the term hardship license, as most often individuals meet the RMV appeal requirements by providing proof of employment to justify the hardship. Once you have been approved for the license and pay the corresponding reinstatement fee, you are free to drive during the approved twelve hour window anywhere and for any purpose. The license is not limited to just going to and from work.
What do I need to do to get a Hardship License?Before even going to the RMV you must determine if you have served enough of your license suspension to be able to even apply. Except for first offense suspensions, if you refused the breathalyzer test, and your license suspension exceeds 180 days, you most likely you will not be able to apply until that initial suspension period is over. If you have served the requisite suspension time you must also satisfy RMV appeal requirements. These include enrollment or completion of specific alcohol programs, proof of a legitimate hardship such as a letter from your employer. Without documentation the RMV will not even fully consider your appeal. Save yourself time and frustration by making sure you have all the necessary documents in your possession before going to the RMV.
Must I complete the substance abuse programs before applying for a hardship license?Generally, the answer is yes, except for first offense OUI cases. If you are convicted of a second or subsequent offense (except in a very limited situation) you must first complete all the required substance abuse programming before applying for a hardship license. If this is your first OUI conviction or if your first OUI was older then ten years from this incident, you may apply for a hardship license with documentation showing you are enrolled in the 24D Alcohol Education Program. For first time OUI suspensions, enrollment in the 24D program is sufficient, you do not need to show proof that you completed the 16 week program.