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Licence Applications

The loss of your driver’s licence can have a significant impact on you and your family.  This is particularly true if you rely on your licence to earn an income, and losing your licence will cause your family to suffer financial hardship.

There are some circumstances in which you may be able to apply for a Special Hardship Order or Restricted Licence (also called a “Work Licence”).  These “special licences” allow you to drive for purposes directly connected with your employment throughout your period of disqualification.

There are also some circumstances where you may be granted a licence that allows you to drive to avoid your family suffering “unusual” hardship.  In our experience, this has included:-

  1. driving children to and from school and extracurricular activities;
  2. attending stores to collect groceries; and
  3. driving to facilitate the care arrangements for children.

If you are concerned that your loss of licence will have a detrimental impact on you and your family, you should seek legal advice as soon as possible.  Our experienced traffic solicitors are able to assist you in determining whether you are eligible for a special licence, preparing your Application and appearing on your behalf at the Hearing.

We can assist you with:

Special Hardship Order

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Restricted Licence
(“Work Licence”)

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Demerit Point Suspension

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High Range Speed Offences

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Drink & Drug Driving

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Eligibility

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Special Hardship Order

Your driver’s licence will be suspended if you accumulate too many demerit points within a specified period, or commit a high range speed offence.

A Special Hardship Order allows you to drive for certain reasons during the period your licence is suspended.  The most common reason for seeking a Special Hardship Order is to allow for travel to and from your place of employment.  If you rely on your licence to generate an income, you may be able to avoid becoming unemployed during the period of suspension by obtaining a Special Hardship Order.

There are also some circumstances where you may be able to drive for other purposes during your suspension.  We have successfully obtained a Special Hardship Order for clients who rely on their licence to drive their children to and from school, require their licence to collect necessary goods from the supermarket and who were required to drive to facilitate changeover for children.

If you are concerned that your loss of licence will have a detrimental impact on you and your family, you should seek legal advice as soon as possible.  Our experienced traffic solicitors are able to determine whether you are eligible for a Special Hardship Order, prepare your Application and appear at the Hearing of your Application.

When can I apply for a Special Hardship Order?

You are only eligible to apply for a Special Hardship Order if:-

  1. you have been charged with a high speed offence (driving at more than 40km/h over the posted speed limit); or
  2. you have accumulated too many demerit points within a specified period.

If you have been charged with a drink driving or drug driving offence, you may be eligible for a Restricted Licence (also called a “Work Licence”).

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Am I eligible to apply for a Special Hardship Order?

If you have been charged with a high range speed offence, or accumulated too many demerit points within a specified period, you may be eligible to apply for a Special Hardship Order.  You must also meet the following eligibility criteria:-

  1. you must hold a current Queensland provisional or open driver licence; and
  2. you must not have had your licence suspended or cancelled within the last 5 years; and
  3. you must not have been convicted of dangerous driving within the last 5 years.

You are eligible to apply for a Special Hardship Order if you meet all eligibility criteria.

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What do I need to show in order for my Application to be successful?

You will not automatically be granted a Special Hardship Order.  If you meet the eligibility criteria, you are eligible to apply for a Special Hardship Order.  You must file an Application to the Court, with supporting documentation.

At the Hearing of your Application, the Court must be satisfied that you:-

  1. are a “fit and proper person” to hold a drivers licence; and
  2. would suffer (or your family would suffer) serious financial hardship or unusual hardship should the Special Hardship Order not be granted.

You will need to file sufficient supporting material to satisfy the Court that a Special Hardship Order should be granted in your circumstances.

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The Application Process

You must make your Application within 21 days of your licence being suspended.

Your Application must include:-

  1. the completed Application form;
  2. an Affidavit from you supporting your Application; and
  3. an Affidavit from your employer supporting your Application (unless you are self-employed).

You will be issued a Hearing date when you file your Application.  This is the date the Court will decide whether to grant you a Special Hardship Order.  At the Hearing, you or your legal representative may be required to make oral submissions about why a Special Hardship Order should be issued.

If your Application is successful, a Special Hardship Order will be issued.  If you are not successful, no Special Hardship Order will be made and you will be unable to drive for any reason during your suspension.

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Conditions of a Special Hardship Order

A Special Hardship Order does not allow you to drive freely during the period of your suspension.  The Special Hardship Order will specifically state the days (and times) that you are allowed to drive.  The Special Hardship Order will also detail the purposes for which you are allowed to drive, such as travel to and from your place of employment.

You are also required to comply with several requirements, such as:-

  1. driving to and from work by the most direct route;
  2. not carrying passengers;
  3. wearing your work uniform while driving;
  4. keeping a log book of your travel;
  5. carrying a copy of your Special Hardship Order at all times.

It is pivotal that you comply with the conditions of your Special Hardship Order.

If you breach your Special Hardship Order, your original suspension period will be reactivated for the remaining period of the suspension.  You will also be disqualified for an additional three months.

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Why seek legal advice?

Successfully obtaining a Special Hardship Order can prevent you from becoming unemployed during your period of suspension.  It is important that your Application is in the correct format, and contains all information the Court requires to properly consider your circumstances.  Our experienced traffic lawyers are able to prepare your Application to a high standard, and give you the best chance at securing a Special Hardship Order.

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Restricted Licence (“Work Licence”)

You will face a mandatory period of disqualification if you are charged with drink driving or driving with a relevant drug in your system.  In certain circumstances, you are able to apply for a Restricted Licence (also referred to as a “Work Licence”).

A Restricted Licence allows you to drive for purposes directly connected with your employment during the period that your licence is disqualified.  The most common reason for seeking a Restricted Licence is to allow for travel to and from your place of employment.  If you rely on your licence to generate income, you may be able to avoid becoming unemployed during the period of disqualification by obtaining a Restricted Licence.

If you are concerned that your loss of licence will have a detrimental financial impact on you and your family, you should seek legal advice as soon as possible.  Our experienced traffic solicitors are able to determine whether you are eligible for a Restricted Licence, prepare your Application and appear at the Hearing of your Application.

When can I apply for a Restricted Licence?

You are only eligible to apply for a Restricted Licence if you:-

  1. have been charged with driving over the general alcohol limit; or
  2. have been charged with driving with a relevant drug present in your blood or saliva; or
  3. have been charged with failing to provide a specimen of breath or saliva.

If you have been charged with a high speed offence or you have accumulated too many demerit points, you may be eligible for a Special Hardship Order.

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What do I need to show in order for my Application to be successful?

You will not automatically be granted a Restricted Licence.  If you meet the specific criteria, you are eligible to apply for a Restricted Licence.

You must file an Application for a Restricted Licence, with the supporting documentation.  The Hearing of the Application must immediately follow the sentence for your drink driving or drug driving offence.

At the Hearing of your Application, the Court must be satisfied that you:-

  1. are a “fit and proper person” to hold a Restricted Licence; and
  2. would suffer (or your family would suffer) serious financial hardship should the Restricted Licence not be granted.

You will need to file sufficient supporting material to demonstrate a Restricted Licence should be granted in your circumstances.

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The Application Process

You must file your Application at least three (3) business days prior to the date that you are intending to enter a plea of guilty to your charge of:-

  1. driving over the general alcohol limit; or
  2. driving with a relevant drug present in your blood or saliva; or
  3. failing to provide a specimen of breath or saliva.

Your Application must include:-

  1. the completed Application form;
  2. an Affidavit from you supporting your Application; and
  3. an Affidavit from your employer supporting your Application (unless you are self-employed).

Your Application will be listed for Hearing on the date of your Court mention, set out on your Notice to Appear or summons.  At the mention, your plea of guilty will proceed to sentence.  The Restricted Licence Application will proceed to Hearing immediately after your sentence.  At the Hearing of your Application for a Restricted Licence, you or your legal representative may be required to make oral submissions about why a Restricted Licence should issue.

If your Application is successful, a Restricted Licence will be issued.  If you are not successful, no Restricted Licence will be made and you will be unable to drive for any reason during the period of your disqualification.

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Conditions of a Restricted Licence Order

A Restricted Licence does not allow you to drive freely during the period of your disqualification.  The Restricted Licence will specifically state the days (and times) that you are allowed to drive.  The Restricted Licence will also detail the purposes for which you are allowed to drive, such as travel to and from your place of employment.

You are also required to comply with several requirements, such as:-

  1. driving to and from work by the most direct route;
  2. not carrying passengers;
  3. wearing your work uniform while driving; and
  4. keeping a log book of your travel.

It is pivotal that you comply with the conditions of your Restricted Licence.

There are significant penalties for failing to comply with the conditions of your Restricted Licence.  The penalties include a maximum fine of 20 penalty units.  Your Restricted Licence will also be revoked and you will be subject to a further period of disqualification should you fail to comply with the conditions of your Restricted Licence.

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Why seek legal advice?

Successfully obtaining a Restricted Licence can prevent you from becoming unemployed during your period of disqualification.  It is important your Application is in the correct format, and contains all information the Court requires to properly consider your circumstances.  Our experienced traffic lawyers are able to prepare your Application to a high standard, and give you the best chance at securing a Restricted Licence.

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Demerit Point Suspension

Your driver’s licence will be suspended if you accumulate too many demerit points within a specified period.  You will receive a Notice of Suspension from the Department of Transport and Main Roads.  The Notice of Suspension will set out the length of your suspension and the date your suspension will commence.

You may be able to apply for a Special Hardship Order if you are facing suspension due to the accumulation of demerit points.

High Range Speed Offences

A high range speed offence occurs if you are found travelling more than 40km/hr over the posted speed limit.  You will face an automatic suspension of 6 months should you receive an Infringement Notice for a high range speed offence.  The Notice of Suspension will set out the date your suspension will commence.

You may be able to apply for a Special Hardship Order if you are facing suspension due to a high range speed offence.

Drink & Drug Driving

You will face a mandatory period of disqualification if you are charged with drink driving or driving with a relevant drug in your system.  In certain circumstances, you are able to apply for a Restricted Licence (also referred to as a “Work Licence”).

You may be eligible to apply for a Restricted Licence if you have been charged with:-

  1. low-range drink driving;
  2. mid-range drink driving; or
  3. driving with a relevant drug present in blood or saliva.

A Restricted Licence allows you to drive for purposes directly connected with your employment during the period that your licence is disqualified.

Eligibility

There are specific eligibility criteria that you must satisfy to apply for a Special Hardship Order or Restricted Licence (also referred to as a “Work Licence”).

You are only eligible to apply for a Special Hardship Order if:-

  1. you have been charged with a high speed offence (driving at more than 40km/h over the posted speed limit); or
  2. you have accumulated too many demerit points within a specified period.

You must also:-

  1. hold a current Queensland provisional or open driver licence; and
  2. not have had your licence suspended or cancelled within the last 5 years; and
  3. not have been convicted of dangerous driving within the last 5 years.

A Special Hardship Order allows you to drive for certain reasons during the period your licence is suspended, such as driving to and from your place of employment.

You are only eligible to apply for a Restricted Licence if:-

  1. you have been convicted of drink driving (low or mid range); or
  2. you have been convicted of driving with a relevant drug present in your blood or saliva; or
  3. you have been convicted of failing to provide a specimen of breath or saliva.

You must also:-

  1. hold a current Queensland provisional or open driver licence; and
  2. not have had your licence disqualified, suspended or cancelled within the last 5 years; and
  3. not have been convicted of dangerous driving within the last 5 years.
  4. not have been driving in connection with your employment at the time of the offence;
  5. satisfy the Court:-
  • you are a ‘fit and proper’ person to hold a licence; and
  • having a licence is integral to maintaining your employment; and
  • you would lose your employment if you were unable to drive; and
  • you or your family would suffer extreme financial hardship if you were deprived of earning your income.

A Restricted Licence allows you to drive for certain reasons during the period your licence is disqualified, including driving for purposes connected with your employment.  Obtaining a Restricted Licence can prevent you from becoming unemployed during your period of disqualification.

Why it’s important to get advice

There is always a range in the severity of penalty that could be imposed, even in matters where a period of mandatory imprisonment applies.  The presiding Judge or Magistrate has discretion and will impose a penalty that is appropriate in your circumstances.

We can assist by ensuring the presiding Judge or Magistrate has all of the relevant information, and is aware of your particular circumstances and mitigating factors.  This can result in you having a lesser penalty imposed.

If you would like legal advice about your matter, or for our office to represent you, please contact our office on (07) 4963 2000 or via our online contact form.

Don’t risk your licence or your livelihood

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