Written by attorney Brent Schafer

Minesota DWI Laws: Recent Changes B-Card Restrictions


For years, people who had been previous "tagged" with the b-card had no remedy to remove the restriction from their driver's license. For those who are not familiar with these terms, an explanation is required. Generally, individuals with 4 DWI/DUI/Test Refusal convictions or alcohol related driver license revocation in a lifetime OR 3 DWI convictions or alcohol related driver license revocation in a 10 year period are subject to this restriction. The restriction prohibits the use or possession of alcohol or illegal controlled substances. The Department of Public Safety places a notation on the reverse side of one's driver's license that indicates this prohibition. Any use of alcohol or illegal controlled substances will invalidate one's driving privileges for a period of 3 years. A second violation will result in a 6 year license revocation/cancellation. A third results in 9 year revocation/cancellation and so on.

In the past, drivers with this restriction who have not consumed alcohol for an extended period of time had no right or recourse to have the restriction removed from their driver's license. This was becoming a problem since some establishments serving alcohol would not allow person to enter with this b-card restriction on their driver's license. This has changed as a result of the changes to Minnesota statutes, effective July 1, 2011.

It is now possible for a person with a b-card restriction to have that notation not only p[hysically removed from the driver's license but also have it removed from their driving record. Minnesota Statute section 171.09 subdivision 3 provides:

Upon proper application by a person having a valid driver's license containing the restriction that the person must not consume alcohol or controlled substances, who has not been documented as having consumed alcohol or having possessed or used a controlled substance within the past ten years, and whose driving record contains no impaired driving incident within the past ten years, the commissioner must remove the no-alcohol/controlled substance restriction on the person's driving record and issue to the person a duplicate driver's license that does not show that restriction.

See, Minnesota Statute section 171.09 subd. 10. (West 2011)

Additional resources provided by the author

Minnesota Statute section 171.09 (West 2011)

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