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occupational drivers license

What’s An Occupational Driver’s License and How Do I Get One?

Did you get your drivers license suspended or revoked? Good news: You may still be able to drive by using an occupational drivers license!

An occupational license (also known as an “essential need license”) is a special type of restricted license that allows you to drive a non-commercial vehicle for work purposes, school, or essential household duties. If your driver’s license has been suspended, revoked or denied for reasons other than medical or delinquent child support, you may be issued an occupational license.

Getting an Occupational Driver’s License

Keep in mind that the overall process can sometimes take weeks, so don’t get frustrated if it’s taking longer than you anticipated. 

Step 1: Request an occupational driver’s license

To make a request, you must go to the Justice of the Peace, country or district court where you live OR the court of original jurisdiction where the offense occurred.

Step 2: Fill out an application

Also called a petition, the application is free and available at the Travis County Law Library. You can also download it online at TexasLawHelp.org. 

Step 3: Wait for eligibility

You will receive a court order if the Justice of the Peace, county or district court deems you eligible to apply for an occupational license. This is the only order that authorizes the Department of Public Safety (DPS) to issue the occupational license.

Step 4: Submit your court order and documents

Once you receive your court order, you must submit that and other required documents to the DPS in order to receive your occupational license. You may use the court order for 45 days from the date of the judge’s signature.

Here are the documents you must submit to the DPS:

Step 5: Receive your occupational license

Once you’ve received your occupational license, you’re good to go! Please note that your license is issued for one year or less, with a maximum length of two years. If you need your license for more than one year, you must get approval from the court first.

Images sourced in order of appearance: Victor Xok

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