There is no automatic right to a hardship license in Massachusetts and the Mass. RMV is not required to grant a hardship license, even where an applicant meets hardship licensing requirements. Instead, the Registry can consider the applicant’s driving record, criminal history, and other factors. The highest court in Massachusetts has ruled that it “purely discretionary with the Registrar of Motor Vehicles whether and on what conditions to grant any such limited [hardship] license.” Commonwealth v. Deramo, 436 Mass. 40, 44 n. 6 (2002).
Just like the Registry is not required to grant hardship licenses, neither is the Board of Appeal. The Board has the legal authority to provide hardship relief even in cases where the Registry has refused to do so. However, like the Registry, the Board is not required to grant anyone a hardship license. Courts have ruled that “the Board can consider hardship, but is not bound to issue a hardship license even if hardship is present.”
Anyone who is seeking a hardship license should know that getting one is not automatic and thousands of people are denied hardship relief, by both the Mass. RMV and the Board of Appeals. The best way to improve your changes of success at the Registry of Motor Vehicles and the Board of Appeal is to hire a lawyer to review your situation, prepare your case, and represent you at your hardship license hearing.
There is no substitute for having the right lawyer by your side when you are trying to get back on the road. Although many hardship license applicants represent themselves, having the right lawyer argue your case can and often does make the difference.
Winning at your hardship license hearing before the Registry or the Board is critical, because no Superior Court has ever ordered the Board or the Mass. RMV to issue a hardship license. If you appear unprepared and do not put on a strong enough case, you risk being denied hardship relief. Call today for a free consultation and review of your situation by a lawyer who specializes in Mass. Hardship Licenses.