A driving restriction is a limitation of your driving privileges that may have been imposed for various reasons. For example, you may be required to wear glasses when you drive or have special or adaptive equipment on your vehicle, or you may be allowed to only drive to and from your school or job. For more information about driving restrictions, see Driving Restriction – Placement of a Restriction and Driving and Restriction – Removal of a Restriction.
If you have a driving restriction, it is usually identified on the front of your driver’s license under the heading RESTR.
What happens if I receive a citation for having a violated a driving restriction?
The MVA is required to suspend or revoke your driver’s license for having violated a restriction. However, the timing of the suspension/revocation depends upon whether or not the restriction is alcohol related. If the restriction is alcohol related, the Administrative Adjudication Division (AAD) of the MVA will move to suspend/revoke your license immediately, sometimes before you pay the fine or appear before the District Court. If the restriction is not alcohol related, the AAD takes action only after it has received information from the District Court that you either paid the fine, thereby admitting guilt, or were found guilty by the judge.
What are some examples of an alcohol related driving restriction?
One example of an alcohol related restriction is the required use of an ignition interlock device that measures your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level and prevents your vehicle from starting if you have been drinking. Another example is that if you are under 21 years of age you are restricted from driving or attempting to drive a motor vehicle while having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level between .02 grams/100ml and .08 grams/100ml.
What should I do if I receive a notice of suspension/revocation from the MVA for violating a driving restriction?
Complete and immediately return your notice to the MVA. When completing the notice, you will have two options:
- Waive your right to a hearing – If you select this option, your license will be suspended or revoked on the date indicated on the notice.
Note: Your driver’s license must be returned with the notice; be sure that it is the most recent license issued to you. If you no longer possess the license, you must submit a Certified Statement that explains why you do not have the license. However, the required minimum suspension/revocation period cannot begin until your license is received. If you delay in returning your driver's license, the actual duration of your suspension/revocation could be much longer . Also if you violate more than one restriction, you will receive separate suspensions that run consecutively, one after the other, unless otherwise ordered by the OHA administrative law judge.
- Request a hearing – You may request a hearing to show cause why your driver’s license should not be suspended or revoked. The Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) will hold your hearing. If you select this option, your request for a hearing must be mailed to MVA’s Administrative Adjudication Division (AAD) office before your suspension date. You do not have to turn in your driver’s license until your hearing.
What happens next?
If you waive your hearing rights, or if you do nothing within the 15-day response period, the suspension or revocation will begin on the date identified on the notice. At a minimum the suspension period will last 6 months, while the revocation period depends upon your driving record. Note, however, that the required, minimum suspension/revocation period cannot begin until your license is received. If you delay in returning your driver’s license, the actual duration of your suspension/revocation could be much longer. Also, if you violate more than one restriction, you will receive separate suspensions that run consecutively, one after the other, unless otherwise ordered by the OAH administrative law judge.
If you request a hearing, the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) will notify you of the hearing date, time and location. Usually, the hearing will be held at the hearing office nearest to your residence, unless you request a different location.
Why would my license be revoked rather than suspended?
The MVA will revoke your license if you have had previous violations of your license restriction(s). Otherwise, your license will be suspended.
What must I do after the suspension or revocation period has ended to regain my driver's license?
When the suspension period is over, you may apply for a duplicate driver's license at any full service MVA branch office. However, if your driver’s license expires during the suspension period and the suspension period extends for more than one year past the expiration date, you will need to apply for a new license and be retested.
The MVA’s Driver Wellness and Safety Division (DW&S) determines the revocation period and when you can apply to have your license reinstated. For more information about reinstating a license, see Reinstatement of a Revoked Driver’s License.
- There is no fee involved in this process.
Administrative Adjudication Division
6601 Ritchie Highway,NE
Glen Burnie, MD 21062
For telephone questions:
MVA Customer Service Center: