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Can I Get an Occupational Drivers License?

 Posted on September 26, 2023 in DWI

Tarrant County, TX ODL lawyerIf you have had your driver’s license suspended, revoked, or canceled, including for a DWI charge, you may be wondering how you can get your life back on track without the ability to drive. People with suspended licenses in Texas may still be able to get an occupational driver's license (ODL). However, there are some restrictions to eligibility.

It is important to note that the eligibility requirements for an ODL in Texas can change, so it is always best to speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney to get the most up-to-date information.

Am I Eligible for an Occupational Driver's License?

A law that came into effect September 1st, 2023, broadens the reasons a person can get an ODL. These include the need to drive so you can:

  • Go to work at a trade or occupation 

  • Go somewhere in “pursuit” of a trade or occupation (such as training or classes)

  • Go to the school where you are enrolled

  • Go somewhere for “essential household duties” (such as grocery shopping, taking the kids to school, or getting the oil on the car changed)

You cannot get an ODL if your license was suspended, canceled, or revoked for the following reasons: 

  • A mental or physical disability 

  • A determination by the state Medical Advisory Board that you are incapable of safely driving

How Can I Get an Occupational Driver’s License? 

To get an ODL, you must first file a petition with the court describing your essential need to drive, including when and where you will be driving. You will then need to submit the court order and the following documents to the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS)

  • A certified copy of the petition

  • A certified copy of the court order granting the ODL

  • An SR-22 proving you carry liability insurance

  • Payment of the occupational license fee

  • Payment of all reinstatement and issuance fees

  • If your suspension was for a DWI, you need to show that you have had an ignition interlock device installed in your car

If the judge grants your petition, the court order will allow you to drive for 45 days while your request for an ODL is processed. You can check the status of your license by visiting the DPS Eligibility Website

Doing this by yourself can be confusing and even a small mistake in paperwork can derail the process and cost you valuable time and money. An experienced attorney can guide you throughout the process and give you the best chance of getting back on the road.

Contact a Tarrant County, TX ODL Lawyer

 Getting an ODL can be a complex process, but it is important to remember that you have rights. The Dameron Law Firm can help you prepare the petition for an ODL as part of your DWI defense or for any other reason. Craig Dameron is an experienced Fort Worth, TX occupational driver’s license and DWI attorney with over 15 years on the job. Contact his law firm at 817-222-0624 to come up with a plan to keep you on the road.

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