Hardship License

Having your license suspended can seriously disrupt your life. It can be difficult to navigate getting to work, college or dropping your children off for school. Simple tasks such as picking up some household supplies become a nightmare to coordinate. Fortunately, fi you have had your license revoked in Florida you can apply for a hardship license.

A hardship license, also known as a restricted license, allows you to drive under certain conditions. Depending on the outcome of your hearing, you will be court ordered to only drive for specific reasons such as picking up your children from school. You may also be barred from using your vehicle during specific times of day such as late at night or early evening.

If you or someone you know is interested in obtaining a hardship license, we recommend you get in contact with an experienced criminal defense attorney.

DUI Attorney Explains Hardship Licenses in Broward County, Florida

Was your license suspended or revoked recently? Are you having serious issues navigating your daily life? If so, we suggest you get in contact with an experienced defense lawyer. The attorneys at Meltzer & Bell are more than qualified to help you. We can review your driving record and explain all the steps you need to take to ensure you obtain a hardship license.

You can learn more about us and how to schedule an appointment by calling (754) 755-8554. Our phones are always open to calls 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Rest assured you will never be on the backburner with Meltzer & Bell. We accept clients throughout the greater Broward County area including Davie, Miramar, Pembroke Pines, Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood.

Overview of Hardship Licenses in Florida


What is a Hardship License in Florida?

Hardship licenses are temporary restricted license that is granted to you by a hearing officer or judge. It allows people with a suspended license to drive during specific times of day for certain tasks. Many associate hardship licenses with driving under the influence, but other people have obtained a hardship license because of failure to pay child support or to appear in court.

Most licenses are suspended or revoked because there’s too many points on a person’s record. The following is the schedule of point violation suspensions and length of suspension.

  • 12 points in 12 months is a 30-day suspension.
  • 18 points in 18 months is a 3-month suspension.
  • 24 points in 36 months is a 12-month suspension

No matter the scenario, a hardship license is extremely useful. Depending on the situation, you may be able to commute to work, school and complete essential tasks. However, if you violate another traffic law or don’t follow the conditions for the license, Florida’s Department of Motor Vehicles and Highway Safety will revoke your hardship license.


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How Do I Obtain a Hardship License in Florida?

Before applying for a hardship license, you must complete some steps beforehand. Failure to finish these tasks will result in your hardship license being barred. The first step is for signing up for the appropriate traffic school. If the points are from traffic tickets and other various instances, then you will be required to complete a 12-hour Florida ADI course.

The ADI course teaches its students how to drive safely and what reckless drivers do to the roads. If your license was revoked because you were under the influence (DUI), then the law requires you to sign up for DUI School Level 1. For each of these classes you will be required to bring your driving record and proof of residency. If you were arrested for DUI, then you must bring your complete arrest and booking report to apply.

Once you’ve applied, you must obtain an enrollment certificate to present to DHSMV. Your second step is to obtain your 30-day driving record from your county clerk. You must submit both to DHSMV and then wait to hear if you’re eligible for a hardship license hearing.

It’s recommended you bring qualified legal representation to the hardship license hearing. Having an attorney on your side will greatly increase your chances of receiving a hardship license. They can obtain all the appropriate information and present to the hearing officer or judge why you require a hardship license.


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Am I Eligible for a Hardship License in Florida?

Most Floridians are eligible to obtain a hardship license if they have a positive driving background. However, there are some cases where DHSMV will reject your application because your past indicates you have issues following traffic laws. These exceptions include people who were convicted for the following:

  • First DUI conviction with two or more prior refusal suspensions;
  • Two or more DUI convictions and the instance for the suspension is a refusal;
  • Second DUI more than 5 years after the first conviction;
  • Third DUI offense more than 10 years after the second conviction;
  • Felony possession of a controlled substance;
  • Theft of a motor vehicle;
  • Possession of tobacco by a minor;
  • Habitual drunkard/excessive drinker by the Medical Advisory Board;
  • Failure to pay child support;
  • Failure to fulfill a financial obligation; or
  • Failure to pay or appear in court

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Additional Resources

Florida Hardship License Laws – Visit the official website for Online Sunshine, a collection of Florida laws and legislation. Access the site to read more about modifying suspensions, cancelling them and specific restricted licenses.

Driver License Suspensions and Revocations – Visit the official website for the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicle Department (DHSMV) to learn more about driver license suspensions. Access the site to see the various reasons for a suspension, suspension terms and various reasons for revocation.


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Hardship License Lawyer in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

If you or someone you know needs a hardship license, then it’s crucial you have legal counsel on your side. You will need an attorney who understands traffic laws and how to craft a sturdy defense. Call Meltzer & Bell to find that attorney. We can assist you with drafting your application, representing you at the hearing and more.

You can call us at (754) 755-8554 to schedule your first consultation. Our defense lawyers are more than happy to sit with you and discuss your charges in detail. Meltzer & Bell represents people throughout the greater Fort Lauderdale area including Pompano Beach, Coral Springs, Hollywood, Davie and Miramar.


This article was last updated on September 4, 2019.

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