Hardship Licensing in Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles imposes harsh penalties, in the form of license suspensions, for those who are convicted of operating under the influence (OUI) in Massachusetts or those who are licensed in Massachusetts and are convicted of DUI in other states. The loss of a driver's license can be devastating.

Fortunately, for those who have had their licenses taken away due to a DUI, drug, or other related conviction, hardship licenses are available. These 12 hour licenses are granted by the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles to those who can demonstrate that they have a legitimate hardship and returning then to the roadways will not place public safety at risk.

Being given a hardship license in Massachusetts is by no means guaranteed and the Registry denies large numbers of people. The Registry can deny a hardship license for practically any reason including the facts of the case, the driver's criminal history, motor vehicle record, or presentation made at the hearing. Having the correct documentation and making an effective presentation to the Registry Hearing Officer or Registry's Appeal Board is the key to success. Basically, the documentation cannot be more than thirty (30) days old and it must be original, signed in ink.

You need to provide documentation which proves that you have a genuine need to drive for work, education, or medical reasons. This usually means that you must provide a letter from your employer, on company letterhead, which explains your need to drive and why public transportation will not be of assistance. If you are self-employed, you can provide your own letter. However, you will also need to submit acceptable proof of self-employment.

To get a hardship license in a Massachusetts OUI or drug case, you will also need to provide proof that you completed an approved drug or alcohol treatment program. Habitual Traffic Offenders must supply proof of completion of the remedial driving class.

If you are on probation, you must supply a letter from your probation officer stating that there have been no violations and that you are in compliance with the terms and conditions of your probation.

Hardship licensing in Massachusetts is discretionary and one of the best ways that you can ensure your success at a hardship licensing hearing is to be represented by a lawyer who specializes in hardship license appeals.

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