Road Tests for Mass. License Reinstatements

If your Massachusetts Driver’s License is suspended or revoked for over one year, MassDOT may require you to take a written and road test prior to getting your license reinstated. Also, the Registry routinely requires competency road exams for those who have had their licenses suspended as a result of a “complaint medical” or an “immediate threat medical.”

Depending on how long you have been off the road, you may want to attend a driving school and practice driving prior to taking your road test with the Registry of Motor Vehicles. As adults, we may pick up some bad driving habits and these habits may cause you to fail your road test and have to re-schedule.

When you a take a road test in Massachusetts, you will be held to the same standard of a sixteen and a half year old who has never held a driver’s license before. The Registry examiner may require to you to demonstrate all of the driving maneuvers customarily required of those who are being licensed for the first time. These include parallel parking, three point turns, using hand signals, demonstrating the proper use of the parking brake and the like.

Also, as the operator of a motor vehicle in Massachusetts, the Registry will require to insure that all passengers have their seat belts securely fastened before you start the vehicle or put the vehicle in motion. Not wearing your seatbelt or insuring that the road test examiner and sponsor have their seatbelts fastened before proceeding is an easy way to fail your road test.

Common ways that people fail road tests in Massachusetts include: failing to come to a complete stop at a red light or stop sign, failure to signal, blocking a crosswalk, and failing to look while backing. These are just a few examples a good driving instructor can help insure that you do not make these common mistakes.

If you are reinstating after a 2rd, 3rd, or 4th offense DUI suspension, you will be ignition interlock required pursuant to the IID Provision of Melanie’s Law, G.L. c. 90 § 24 ½. This means that you will have to take your road test in a vehicle which is equipped with a certified ignition interlock device. You will be ignition interlock required, and have a “Z” restriction on your driver’s license while any hardship limitation is in place and for at least two year after the removal of the 12 hour driving restriction.

If you are taking a road test in a vehicle which does not have a center console mounted emergency brake, you should notify the Registry Hearings Officer who schedules your road test. Notifying the Registry of this will allow them to schedule the test with an examiner who can perform the road test without a center console emergency brake. Otherwise, your road test may have to be rescheduled.

You must have a sponsor accompany you for the road test, just as you would if you were getting a driver’s license for the first time. The sponsor will be required to sit in the back seat and the RMV examiner will sit in the front passenger seat.

The vehicle which you are using for the road test must be registered, inspected, insured, and in good working order. It must have functioning seatbelts, turn signals, and other required equipment. If you are IID restricted, your vehicle must have a functioning ignition interlock device which you must use during the road test.

If you have questions regarding road tests in Massachusetts, you can contact the Registry of Motor Vehicles at 857-368-8000.