National Driver Register License Suspensions

In 1982, Congress had enacted the National Driver Register Act of 1982, which was designed to create a national driver register to assist state driver license administrators in identifying problem drivers. The NDR Law was difficult to implement due to federal-state constitutional tensions and the utter lack of uniformity between states as to how offenses such as DUI, leaving the scene of an accident, operating after suspension, and other such driving violations are recorded and handled. After years of negotiations, the states settled on a national clearinghouse which is not a national repository of driving records, but merely a means of sharing information and some agreed-upon terminology to communicating. This developed into the Problem Driver Pointer System (PDPS), under which a state processing an application for a new or renewed license sends a “PDPS check” to the national clearinghouse computer in Arlington, Virginia, which relays the request to all member jurisdictions instantaneously. Any jurisdiction which has a negative history on that person responds and sends the information back to the requesting state.

The purpose of the National Driver Register, which some refer to as the National Driver Registry is to allow all state registries of motor vehicles to ensure, at the time an individual applies for or renews a driver’s license, that an individual whose driver’s license has been suspended, revoked, or cancelled in another state cannot obtain a license from a different state.

The Problem Driver Pointer System (PDPS) of the NDR has been simplified to maintain only certain identifying information on problem drivers contained in ‘pointer’ records. These records ‘point’ to the State where the substantive adverse records can be obtained. The PDPS system is fully automated and enables State driver licensing officials to determine instantaneously whether another State has taken adverse action against a license applicant.” Thus, the NDR notification only advises Massachusetts that there is an unresolved offense in another state, and no license can be issued until the individual satisfies whatever requirements necessary. The NDR does not contain detailed information regarding the block or the license suspension. Instead, this information must be obtained from the source, which is the motor vehicle department (DMV) or Registry which initiated the NDR block.

If you are listed as “not eligible” in the NDR, you must contact the Registry or Motor Vehicle Department in the state where the block originates. For example, if you are a Massachusetts license holder whose license is suspended here or denied renewal because of a NDR block originating out of say the State of Florida you should contact a Florida License Suspension Lawyer. Conversely, drivers from other states whose licenses are blocked in the NDR because of the Mass. RMV, should contact a Massachusetts Registry Attorney.