Can I Drive After A DUI Conviction?

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From his Fitchburg office, attorney Matthew Gilman represents clients all over the state of Massachusetts. Fill out the form on this page or call the office today to connect with him and set up a free consultation. Matthew will discuss your case in the office or even in your own home and determine the best way forward for your unique situation.

If you need to drive to get to work, school or frequent medical appointments, losing your drivers license following a DUI Arrest and conviction is a major hardship. A restricted license or hardship license is possible.

If you have received your first DUI conviction, the court has no authority in Massachusetts to granting you a restricted or work license. The court will likely suspend your driver’s license for anywhere between 45 – 90 days. This is on top of any suspension for Refusing the Breathalyzer. The Registry of Motor Vehicles does have the authority to grant restricted hardship licenses. If this is your first DUI conviction you will only have to wait until you are enrolled in the Driver Alcohol Education Program (DAE). Waiting in some counties can be just a few days but in other counties the wait time can be weeks and months.  In addition to the enrollment documentation, the Registry will require a letter from your employer on company letterhead or other documentation that supports your hardship.

If you have no prior DUI convictions in Massachusetts or any other state you will not be required to have the Ignition Interlock Device (IID). If, however, you had a prior DUI conviction that was older then ten years from the most recent conviction you may have received a Cahill Disposition in Court. A Cahill Disposition is a second first offender disposition. If you resolved your case with the Cahill Disposition you will still be immediately eligible for a hardship license, however, you will need to get an ignition interlock device installed before being eligible to reinstate.

What is a Restricted License

A restricted drivers license in Massachusetts only permits operation of a motor vehicle during a twelve-hour window. A normal license allows individuals to drive 24 hours a day, a hardship license is valid for seven days a week but only the same twelve hours per day. The most common basis for a hardship license being granted is to assist individuals with getting to and from work. Although hardship licenses can be granted for medical, school and family hardships as well.

A hardship license looks just like any ordinary license. The difference is that the specific hour restrictions are printed in small font on the license. 

If you are granted a hardship license you can drive for any purpose during the specified twelve-hour window seven days a week. There is no restriction on where you can drive or for what purpose you can operate a motor vehicle if you have a hardship license.

Attorney Gilman has successfully represented hundreds of clients  appeal their DUI license suspension to the Registry of Motor Vehicles and the Division of Insurance Board of Appeals and obtained a hardship license. Call today to schedule a free, no-obligation case review with attorney Matthew Gilman.