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Hardship Licenses for Fraud Suspensions

Massachusetts Registry News

The Special Investigations Unit of the Registry of Motor Vehicles will indefinitely revoke your license whenever it discovers that you have provided false information to the Registry in order to obtain a license or identification card. Most of these cases are discovered through facial recognition, where the Registry finds the same person’s photograph on multiple license records.

At minimum, false license and “Comp. Fraud Lic/Id” cases usually result in 6 month license revocations. False license cases can also result in felony criminal charges, pursuant to G.L. c. 90 § 24B. It is a crime to provide false information to the Registry when applying for a driver’s license.

If your Massachusetts license or right to drive is suspended or revoked for license fraud, you have the right to appeal the revocation to the Division of Insurance Board of Appeal. However, you can only appeal the revocation once you have proven your true identity to the Registry’s satisfaction and you have explained the fraud to the RMV Special Investigations Unit.  If you appeal a false license suspension to the Registry Appeals Board prior to clearing your record with the Special Investigations Unit, the Board will deny you appeal and refer you to the Registry, where you must meet with a Registry Hearings Officer or State Trooper assigned to the Compliance Unit.

Once you have attended the license fraud hearing and proven your true identity, you can be considered for a 12 hour hardship license or, in some cases, early reinstatement of your driving privileges. However, in cases where you used someone else’s social security number or other identifying information, getting a hardship license may be difficult. The Board of Appeal takes a very dim view of identity theft. Unlike license fraud, identity theft is not a “victimless crime” and getting a hardship license in cases where you have used someone else’s identity without their permission can be difficult. Contact Attorney Brian E. Simoneau for more information.

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