Persons charged with drink or drug driving offences in Queensland are able to drive for the purposes of their employment under a work licence. It is important to engage the services of a professional for your work licence application.
Am I eligible for a work licence?
To be eligible to apply for a work licence in Queensland all of the following circumstances must apply:
- At the time of applying for a work license you hold a current Queensland provisional or open driver licence;
- At the time of the offence you held a current Queensland provisional or open driver licence;
- You were not driving in the course of your employment at the time of the offence;
- You have not, in the last five years, been convicted anywhere of a drink driving offence or similar offence, or failing to provide a specimen of breath or blood;
- You have not, in the last five years, been disqualified from holding a license, had your licence disqualified, suspended or cancelled in Queensland (not including disqualification for mental or physical handicap, or suspension for non-payment of fines and penalties, or offences later set aside on appeal);
- You have not been convicted of dangerous driving in Queensland in the last five years;
- Your blood alcohol concentration level was below 0.15%; and
- You were not driving under a licence that required your blood alcohol concentration to be zero at the time of the offence.
In order to be eligible for a work licence you must prove to the Court:
- That if you are not granted a work licence you will lose your job, which will cause extreme hardship for yourself and your family; and
- That you are a fit and proper person to hold a work licence.
Am I excluded from holding a Work License?
You cannot apply for a work licence if at the time of the offence:
- You were driving a motor vehicle that you were not authorised to drive under an open or provisional licence;
- You were under 25, on a provisional licence or learners permit and your blood alcohol concentration level exceeded 0% or you had illegal drugs in your system;
- you are unemployed;
- Being without licence will cause you inconvenience only;
- You were under the influence of drugs;
- Your blood alcohol level exceeded 0% while driving, attempting to put in motion, or in charge of any of the following:
(a) A motor truck;
(b) A motor omnibus;
(c) An articulated motor vehicle;
(d) A B-double;
(e) A road train;
(f) An operational tow truck;
(g) A taxi or limousine;
(h) A vehicle used while giving driver training (as a qualified driver trainer);
(i) A vehicle carrying a placard load of dangerous goods;
(j) A pilot vehicle escorting an excess dimensional vehicle.
Will my work licence be restricted?
Work licences often come with Court-imposed restrictions and limitations relating to, for example:
- The times when you may drive;
- The purposes for which you may drive;
- The class of vehicle you may drive;
- The carrying of passengers in the vehicle.
Ordinarily, work licences are issued for the entire period of your disqualification.
If you apply for and are granted a work licence the Court may elect to double the disqualification period you would have received had you not received the work licence.
When should I apply for my Work Licence?
Applications for work licences must be made to the Court that will hear your drink or drug driving charge and must be made before you have been found guilty of the offence.
When will my application be heard?
At the first Court appearance you should advise the magistrate that you wish to apply for a work licence. The magistrate will then set a time and date for your application to be heard.
What information must I provide to the Court?
In order to apply for a work licence you must provide all of the following:-
- An affidavit from yourself, addressing your work, financial, driving and personal circumstances – unless already included in the QP9 (police report), you should also exhibit your traffic and criminal history;
- An affidavit from your employer addressing the necessity of a licence to your job and the consequences of you not obtaining a work licence;
- An Application for an Order directing the issue of a Restricted Licence.
It is possible that you or your employer may be called to give evidence in the witness box before the magistrate regarding any of the matters disclosed in your affidavits.
What benefit will a lawyer provide?
Remember that you are only able to apply for a work licence once on the day of your hearing. Improperly prepared affidavits, incorrect forms, or poor representation on the day may lead to extended disqualification periods, larger fines, insufficient or improper work licence terms, or the rejection of your work licence application.
Allowing a solicitor experienced in work licence applications to guide you through the process affords peace of mind and may make the difference that allows you to keep working through your disqualification period.
Please contact us to find out more or to discuss our fixed fees and disbursements.
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