The state of Florida defines a hardship license as one that only allows the holder to drive for business or commercial purposes. It’s typically granted to people who have displayed behaviors or had outcomes that make it unsafe for them to have unrestricted licenses. If you think you’re eligible for a hardship license and want to apply for one, it’s crucial to take the proper steps in the right order. Moreover, there are specific things to do or learn before moving forward.
Determine Your Eligibility for a Hardship License
The website of the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles lists some common scenarios that potentially make a person able to apply for a hardship license. For example, a person who commits 15 points-based moving violations or three major violations in five years gets classified as a habitual traffic offender. Such an individual has their driving permission revoked for five years but can then apply for a hardship license afterward.
Additionally, if a person commits a traffic offense not related to driving under the influence that relates to someone’s injury or death, they can apply for a hardship license after a one-year revocation period. As you can see from these differing timelines, your eligibility for a hardship license depends both on the type of infraction and when it occurred. Take the time to see if your situation applies before proceeding
Check the Opening Hours of the Clerk of the Court’s Office
One of the steps in getting your hardship license requires going to the office of the clerk of the court and getting information associated with a 30-day search of your driving record. Once they see the information in their system, they’ll give you the correct details for applying for the hardship license. However, the COVID-19 pandemic makes it particularly essential to verify that you can get in-person service at this time.
For example, Florida’s governor temporarily extended license expiration dates due to the pandemic. However, the extensions do not apply to people with suspended or revoked licenses. Call your local offices to verify that service will be available once you show up.
Register for a Driving Course
Laws dictate that a person who submits a Florida hardship license application must complete state-approved advanced driver improvement (ADI) classes even if they receive permission to drive while the class is still in progress. Fortunately, you can take many of these courses online, meaning you get the necessary knowledge without leaving home.
This overview shows why you cannot assume that you know the right way to go about applying for a hardship license. It’s best to find out everything you need to know from reliable sources first. Otherwise, you risk wasting time and becoming frustrated.