What is an occupational license?

Among the things being convicted of drunk driving can impact for a person here in Wisconsin is their everyday transportation. This is because one of the typical penalties for OWI in the state is a license revocation. How long such a revocation would typically go depends on things like whether the convicted individual has previous OWIs on their record and whether any children were in the vehicle at the time of the incident.

Now, there is a way that a person who has lost their license in relation to an OWI can get legal authorization to do some driving during the license revocation period. This is through getting an occupational license. This is a license that gives a person with a revoked/suspended license limited permission to drive so they can keep their employment and household maintained.

As a note, a person cannot drive whenever and wherever they would like under an occupational license, as there are numerous limits a driver is subject to under such a license. Among the things a driver is restricted from doing with this type of license are:

  • Driving more than 60 hours a week.
  • Driving more than 12 hours a day.
  • Driving a commercial motor vehicle.
  • Driving for recreational reasons or any other non-permitted reasons.
  • Driving in locations other than those authorized by the license (individuals can specify what areas they need to drive in when applying for such a license).
  • Driving at times other than those specified by the license.

Also, unless it was their first offense, a person convicted of OWI will generally have to wait a certain amount of time prior to being able to apply for such a license.

When a person is facing an OWI charge, understanding what restrictions (including driving-related restrictions) they could face if convicted and what exceptions to these restrictions might be available is among the things that can be important for them when the time to make big decisions comes up in their case. Among the things experienced drunk driving defense attorneys can help OWI suspects with is getting accurate and complete information (including information on potential consequences) regarding their situation so they are ready when they need to make big decisions in their case.

Sources: FindLaw, “What Are the Wisconsin OWI Laws?,” Accessed Aug. 23, 2016

Wisconsin Department of Transportation, “Occupational license,” Accessed Aug. 23, 2016

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