Restricted Driver Licences
A magistrate may make an order under the Vehicle and Traffic Act 1999 s.18 authorising the issue of a restricted driver licence (subject to conditions) to a person whose Australian driver licence is, or is liable to be, suspended or cancelled because of –
- an accumulation of demerit points; or
- a disqualification order made by an Australian court; or
- an automatic statutory penalty (eg an excessive speed infringement or breathalyser traffic infringement).
The magistrate will only authorise a restricted driver licence if satisfied on evidence produced by you that:
- the licence suspension or disqualification is imposing, or will impose, severe and unusual hardship on the applicant or his/her dependants; and
- a restricted driver licence should be issued to mitigate or alleviate that hardship; and
- the issue of the restricted driver licence would not be contrary to the public interest.
You should be aware that, in certain circumstances, the Court has the power to increase your disqualification period by up to twice the original disqualification period if you are granted a Restricted Driver Licence following conviction of a drink-driving offence.
If the Court makes an order authorising a restricted driver licence to be issued to you because your licence is suspended or cancelled, you are not permitted to drive until you obtain that restricted driver licence from the Registrar of Motor Vehicles (via Service Tasmania).
You cannot obtain a restricted driver licence if:
(A) pursuant to s18(2) of the Vehicle and Traffic Act 1999:
- your licence is, or is liable to be, suspended because of the accumulation of demerit points and you have, or had, the option of entering into an undertaking for a period of good driving behaviour;
- you do not hold a current Australian driver licence and are ineligible to apply for an Australian driver licence because of the accumulation of demerit points;
- you are a novice driver who has not held a provisional licence for a continuous period of 12 months, or you are a P1 licence holder who has been, or will be, regressed to an L2 licence;
- you have been disqualified from driving in accordance with an Excessive Drink Driving Notice that has not been cancelled or determined by a court;
- you have never held an driver licence issued anywhere in Australia;
(B) you committed an offence contrary to the Road Safety (Alcohol and Drugs) Act 1972 and:
- your offence was committed during any period of disqualification, or within 3 years after the end of any period of disqualification under that Act;
- your offence was driving with a blood alcohol content equal to or greater than 0.15%;
- your offence was driving under the influence of a drug or alcohol;
- your offence was your objection to the analysis of a blood or urine sample;
- you offended when you were the holder of a learner licence or a provisional licence (unless your offence was driving with an illicit prescribed drug in your blood);
- at the time of the offence you were not authorised under an Australian driver licence to drive a vehicle in respect of which the offence was committed eg. driving a bus without a relevant licence (unless your offence was driving with an illicit prescribed drug in your blood);
- you were driving a prescribed vehicle at the time of the offence eg. taxi, bus, luxury hire car, or a vehicle with a GVM exceeding 4.5 tonnes;
- your offence was refusing or failing to submit to a breath analysis, blood sample, or medical examination;
Evidence you should obtain in support of your Application :
If your application is based on the need to drive in the course of your employment, you may ask your employer to attend court on the hearing day to give evidence of that fact. A letter may be acceptable evidence in some cases.
If your conviction was for an offence against the Road Safety (Alcohol & Drugs) Act 1972 the Court may require you to produce a letter from your doctor certifying that you are not alcohol dependent.
You must produce evidence that:
If your application for a restricted driver licence relates to a disqualification for excessive speed or a drink driving notice or demerit points, you need to produce the Notice received from the Registrar of Motor Vehicles. This Notice will set out the date on which your disqualification / suspension will begin. You must ask the court for any restricted driver licence to be issued on the same date as set out on that Notice.
A Statement of Licence Details can be obtained from the Registrar of Motor Vehicles by phoning1300 851 225. Other evidence of disqualification can include a Record of Prior Convictions (obtainable from Tasmania Police), or an order of the Court.
You must supply details of your Australian driver licence if you have had one. If your licence has been already been cancelled or surrendered, you can obtain details of your former licence at any Service Tasmania shop.
Court procedures :
Application forms are available from all Magistrates Court registries, to which you must attach all supporting documentation.
The Court will list the Application before a Magistrate not less than seven (7) days from the lodgement of your Application with the Court.
You must serve (deliver) a copy of your Application, at least 7 days before the allocated hearing date, on the:
You should ensure the person served signs the receipt on the copy Application form, and bring the signed copy with you to court on the day.
You should not serve the Application on Police or the Registrar of Motor Vehicles until after the Application has been checked by the Court staff.
A filing fee is payable upon lodgement of the Application.
Restricted Licence Conditions:
You must clearly outline in detail the conditions of the restricted driver licence that you would like the Magistrate to authorise. Two examples are set out below as a guide:
- To enable me to drive my motor vehicle a…Holden Commodore……..Reg.No…JE4545…..between my home at 23 Liverpool Street, Hobart…and my workplace at …Mighty Max Hardware at Kingston……,….one… hour before my rostered start time and …one... hour after the cessation of my daily roster, and to drive work vehicles Reg.No…A 1327 and B 4396…..at the direction of my employer, for a period starting on 3 May 2010 until 3 November 2010.
- To enable me to drive between my home at…23 Liverpool Street, Hobart .. and my workplace at …Mighty Max Hardware at Kingston ……. between the hours of … 8.00 - 8.30am … and …5.00 - 5.30pm.. , each Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday , for a period starting on 3 May 2010 until 3 November 2010.
The Court has the power to attach a wide range of conditions to a restricted licence, including:
- the use of one or more specified vehicles;
- driving on specified days, and hours of the day;
- imposing a "no alcohol" condition;
- limiting driving to specified routes; and
- keeping a detailed log book of journeys to be produced to a Police Officer if requested.
Severe and unusual hardship, & alternative transport options:
- The Court can only grant a restricted licence if satisfied that the applicant (or his/her dependant(s)) will suffer severe and unusual hardship if unable to drive. Loss of employment on its own may not be enough to satisfy a Magistrate.
- You must also be able to show that there is no alternative means of transport reasonably available to you, and that your hardship should be alleviated by being able to drive on a restricted licence.
- In order to satisfy the Magistrate that there are no reasonable alternatives, you may be required to produce bus timetables and taxi quotes. You may also need to prove that friends, relatives, or workmates cannot provide alternative transport for you.