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Special Hardship Licence

September 6, 2019




Are you going to lose your licence…and your job?


What happens if your driver's licence is critical to your job and you have just received a suspension notice?


In Queensland, if your licence has been suspended and you are likely to suffer extreme hardship as a result you may be entitled to apply for a Special Hardship Order ("SHO").


Previously you had to apply for a SHO within 21 days of your licence being suspended.


However from 1 April, 2019 the legislation has changed now allowing a driver on a suspended licence to apply for a SHO at any point during their 6 month suspension period.  You should bear this in mind in case your circumstances change at some time during your suspension period.


You may apply for a SHO if you accumulate more than 2 demerit points on a good driving behaviour period or have exceeded the speed limit by more than 40km/hr and can show that:


  • You are a fit and proper person to continue to drive;

  • Refusal to grant a SHO would cause extreme hardship to you or your family by depriving you of your means of earning a living; or

  • Severe and unusual hardship to you or your family, other than by depriving you of your means of earning a living.


A SHO is a Court Order that allows you to drive on certain restrictions which may include the days and times you are allowed to drive. 


To be eligible to apply for a SHO you must:


  • be the holder of a valid open or provisional Queensland licence;

  • not have had your licence disqualified, suspended or cancelled in the last five years;

  • not have been convicted by a Court of dangerous driving in the last five years.


To apply for a SHO you must make an application to the Magistrates Court.  It is necessary to provide affidavit evidence to the Court to show the Court you are a "fit and proper person" to be granted a SHO and that you will extreme hardship, such as your employment being terminated as a result of your suspended licence.





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