“How am I going to get to work?” is the question we hear most frequently from our clients who are facing the suspension of their license as a result of a traffic violation or DWI. Losing the ability to drive can have a significant impact on your day-to-day life. At Powers McCartan our goal is to avoid a license suspension if at all possible. Even if we are unable to avoid a license suspension there is still hope.
What most people do not realize is that the judges have the ability to issue what is called a “limited driving privilege” for people whose licenses are being suspended as a result of a DWI or traffic violation. The judge in your case may have the ability to allow you to drive for any of the following purposes:
- Maintenance of your household
- Court-ordered treatment
- Community service
- Emergency medical care
At Powers McCartan our attorneys have experience requesting and obtaining limited driving privileges for our clients. Most often we are able to get our clients the limited privilege for driving for work. This work driving privilege allows you to drive to, from and during work. If you are granted a work driving privilege you must keep a copy of the judgment with you at all times and comply with the restrictions. We will take the time to educate you on the restrictions associated with your work driving privilege so that you operate within designated parameters.
While every request is handled on a case-by-case basis, in order to qualify for a limited driving privilege you must prove a few things to the court. The first is that you must prove that you have valid insurance coverage; you can request a DL-123 form from your insurance company and submit it to the court as proof of insurance. You must also prove that you had a valid driver’s license at the time of the initial conviction. This means that if you cannot afford insurance you will not be granted a limited driving privilege for work. Furthermore, if you did not have a valid license at the time of the conviction you will not be granted a limited driving privilege for work.
My License Is Already Suspended, Can You Help?
Clients often come to us after paying a fine for a traffic violation, not realizing that combined with a previous violation they have exceeded the number of points allowed on a North Carolina driver’s license and their license has been suspended. Your license can be suspended for any of the following reasons:
- Two speeding convictions of more than 55 mph in one year
- A reckless driving conviction and a speeding conviction of more than 55 mph in one year
- Vehicle racing
- Speeding more than 15 mph hour over the speed limit
- Speeding over 75 mph
- Driving after consuming alcohol for anyone under 21 years old
If your license has already been suspended, our accomplished lawyers may be able to help you obtain a license granting a limited driving privilege for work, school or for caring for your family. We will assess every opportunity and will help you obtain driving privileges for work or school if at all possible. Each case is unique and the best way to determine whether or not you qualify for a work driving privilege is to speak with an attorney. We are available 24 hours a day at (704) 342-4357.
Modified Transcription of “North Carolina Work and Limited Driving Privileges” for the Hearing Impaired
Hey, I’m Bill Powers and I want to thank you, first, for checking out our website. If you have questions or want to get more information, please give us a ring. The consultation’s free and confidential.
This is an area of law that can be, at time, complicated and doesn’t always make sense from a commonsense type of perspective. Clients come to us, they say, “Hey, listen, I made mistake in the past, all I want to do is go to work. All I want to do is drive, and be a good tax payer, and work, and take care of my family. And if they take away my driver’s license, you know, I’m going to drive illegally anyway.” By the way, I don’t encourage that, but we hear it. When we have these types of offenses, people want to know, normally after the fact, what can I do? Well, it kind of depends the type of revocation that we’re dealing with or suspension. Privileges are normally associated with revocation or suspension. I can’t think of an instance off the top of my where they’re not. It may be a bad speeding ticket. It may be multiple citations or cumulation of points. It may be while driving impaired. Let me go through these different ideas.
Believe it or not, certain type of speeding offenses and other traffic offenses, even if it’s your first offense, if it’s fast enough, it’s big enough, you can get your license revoked. Meaning, the DMV says, “Hey, we don’t like you going that fast. You were going like a bat out of heck. Um, you ain’t driving for a while.” What do you do? Well, you may be entitled to a hearing with DMV. You may appeal or challenge the basis of that suspension or ask the hearing officer to give you some form of relief.
This video, you’re asking about privileges. There are certain type of privileges allowed in your county of residence, if it’s a speeding related suspension or revocation, you may be able to have a judge, [inaudible 00:01:54] court, superior court, depending on the type of offense, off or allow a limited driving privilege. Sometimes, people call that a paper license. Sometimes, people refer to it as a hardship license. In the profession, we tend to refer to it as a limited driving privilege. If it involves a driving while impaired, we refer to it as a pre-trial limited driving privilege. If it involves driving while impaired conviction, we may call it a post-conviction limited driving privilege. if you’re required to get one of the blow-and-go’s, the ignition interlock device, we refer to it as an ignition interlock limited driving privilege. There are a lot of different types of privileges out there.
It’s a mistake to assume that just because you’re a good person, and you’re trying to work, and take care of your family, and pay your taxes, that you’re going to get some form of relief. There are just some types of offenses that there ain’t such a thing, there ain’t such an animal. It’s also important to realize that you pretty much had to have had a valid license or eligibility for a license at the time. This is really complicated. We see this in [inaudible 00:02:55] cases where the license had been suspended for less than a year or had been expired for less than a year and there may be some form of relief.
I think it’s fair to say that if you’re going to get a limited privilege, if you’re going to get some sort of relief from the court, and that’s technically different than DMV, you’re going to need to have proof of insurance. Probably going to want to pull a copy of your record. Want to show the court that you’re otherwise eligible. Sometimes, we have you fill out affidavits. Sometimes, there are a lot of forms to fill out. There may be filing fees. It’s a bit more complicated than you may think.
I see people walking around the halls of a court house pretty regularly trying to figure out where to go. They’ve got to go clerk’s office, and they’ve got to go to cashier, and go back to clerk’s office, and then they realize, “Wow, I never paid my restoration fee to start with,” and it can be a bit overwhelming. Not trying to freak you out. Not trying to scare you. If your license is suspended and you’re seeking a limited privilege, I think you probably realize how valuable that little plastic card is. Either that or you’re driving without one and that ain’t a good idea. You don’t want to get handcuffed, taken off to jail. That can happen in certain circumstances, not in every one, but some officers do it. Some officers, in their discretion, don’t. It depends on the type of offense.
Gracious, call a lawyer. If it’s not us, talk to somebody else. Our consultation’s free. We’re not going to send you a bill for just calling and talking to us. We’re going to tell you what we think. We’re going to tell you the best case and worse case scenario. We’re going to tell you whether we think we can help you, and we’re going to you whether you might can help yourself. On limited privilege cases and DMV hearing cases, I frankly think it’s a good idea to have a lawyer. Of course, I’m lawyer, maybe I’m a little biased here. Our telephone number, 704-342-HELP. That’s what we do, we provide help. 704-342-4357. I hope you give me a ring.