Are you eligible for a Work Licence?

Work Licence Applications

If you are charged with drink or drug driving offences, you may be eligible for a Work Licence which will allow you to drive for the purposes of your employment.

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 you extreme hardship and that you are a fit and proper person to hold a Work Licence.

Are you 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 Licence 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 licence, 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.

Are you excluded from holding a Work Licence?

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.

Will your Work Licence be restricted?

The Court may grant you a Work Licence but impose restrictions on you, such as the times when you may drive, the purposes for which you may drive, the class of vehicle you may drive and the carrying of passengers in the vehicle.

Disqualification Period

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 you apply for a 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 your 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.

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.

Do you need a lawyer?

Whilst you can complete the documentation, submit it yourself and also appear in court on your own behalf – and whilst appearing biased – we recommend that you engage a solicitor to assist you.

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.

Lockett McCullough Lawyers can assist you with your Work Licence application by appearing for you in Court and also by preparing all of the documentation required for your application. This includes:

• 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 Work 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.

Alternatively, if you wish to prepare the documents yourself, we are happy to peruse your documents and make recommendations in order to reduce your costs.

Please contact us today if you require any further information or assistance with your Work Licence Application.

Written by

Courtney Lockett is a solicitor admitted in the Law Court of Queensland and the High Court of Australia with years of law practice in Brisbane and Townsville. She has experience in various specialised areas of law such as property law, business and commercial law, family law, criminal law, succession law, and litigation. Click here to learn more about Courtney or follow her on Linkedin

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