What is a Hardship License?
If you have been charged with a DWI, you are probably worried about both the short-term and long-term effects this will have on your life. You may be asking yourself, “What is a hardship license? Who is eligible to receive one?” These are things that can be discussed with your attorney. Contact our office today to learn more.
What is a Hardship License? | Eligibility
In New York, if you are charged with a DWI or DUI, you will go in front of a judge. At the time that you go in front of the judge for the very first time, if your blood alcohol content is a .08 or more or if you refuse to take a breath test, the judge will suspend your privileges. If you refuse to take a breath test, you are not eligible for a hardship license. However, if you do blow a .08 or more, you are eligible for a hardship license. A hardship license is not given by the Department of Motor Vehicles. It is only handed out by the judge. Ordinarily the process is to ask the judge to put the case on for a few days later in order for a hardship hearing. The purpose of the hardship hearing is to determine whether the judge will give you a hardship license based on financial hardship.
What is a Hardship License? | Reasons for Hardship Licenses
In the more rural areas of New York State, it is very difficult to get from one’s home to their work without using their motor vehicles. There is not very much mass transit, buses, or subways. Therefore, someone might have to hire a car or a driver or in these cases a taxicab or maybe an Uber. That can be very expensive. Everybody is on their own income and it’s fixed to some extent, of course. If you can prove to the court that based on your income it would be a financial hardship for you to essentially hire a driver, then the court would grant you a hardship license.
What is a Hardship License? | Difficulties Obtaining a Hardship License
However, in the City of New York, getting a hardship license is a little more difficult due to the advent of copious mass transit. If you live in Brooklyn and you have to go to Washington Heights, there are buses and subways, which would not create, in most cases, a financial hardship. Remember, a financial hardship is not that it’s going to take you longer; it’s that while it might be a hardship, it’s not a financial hardship. These are things that should be discussed with your attorney before you go in front of the judge.
If you need experienced representation, contact our office to find out how we can help you.