Extraordinary Drivers Licences

EXTRAORDINARY DRIVERS LICENSE 1024x314 1

Extraordinary Driver’s Licence Applications

An “Extraordinary Driver’s Licence” (EDL) is a conditional driver’s licence which can be granted by a court in certain circumstances.  An EDL may be granted where a person is otherwise disqualified from holding a driver’s licence.  Such a licence will have conditions attached to it which can restrict:

  • The location/s where the holder may drive;
  • The purpose for which the holder may drive;
  • The hours during which the holder is permitted to drive; and
  • The class or classes of vehicle/s which the holder may drive.

If a person is granted an EDL, that EDL will be current until the end of the period for which it was granted or until the person’s disqualification ends.

Who Can Apply for an Extraordinary Driver’s Licence?

Pursuant to s.27 of the Road Traffic (Authorisation to Drive) Act 2008 (WA), (The Act), a person who is disqualified from holding a driver’s licence under The Act or any other written law in WA may apply to a court for an order directing the CEO (Chief Executive Officer of the department of the Public Service principally assisting in the administration of this Act) to grant an EDL.

There are some exceptions to the above general rule.

Pursuant to s.27(3), a person cannot apply for an EDL if that person:

  • Is disqualified from holding a driver’s licence as a result of demerit points;
  • Has been given a disqualification notice by police as a result of being charged with:
    • Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs;
    • Driving with a blood alcohol content of or above 0.08; or
    • Failure to comply with a requirement to provide a sample, allow a sample to be taken or accompanying a police officer pursuant to s.66 of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA); or
  • Has had their driver’s licence suspended under a provision of the Fine, Penalties and Infringement Notices Enforcement Act 1994 (WA).

When Can an Application for an Extraordinary Licence be Made?

S.28 of The Act sets out when a person who receives a driver’s licence disqualification becomes eligible to apply for an EDL.  The default period is 21 days after the disqualification; however, for certain classes of disqualification, the period a person must wait can be 2, 3 or 4 months:

  • A person must wait 4 months before applying for an EDL If the person was disqualified for;
    • Driving under the Influence of Alcohol/ Drugs where it is a second or subsequent offence;
    • Failure to Comply with Requirement of a police officer made pursuant to s.67 of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA) where it is a second or subsequent offence;
    • Driving Whilst Impaired by Drugs if it is a second or subsequent offence; or
    • Failure to undergo a driver assessment or to provide a blood/ oral fluid sample pursuant to s.67AA of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA) where it is a second or subsequent offence;
  • A person must wait 3 months before applying for an EDL if the person was disqualified for;
    • Driving under the influence of alcohol/ drugs where it is a first offence but the person has previously been convicted of driving with a blood alcohol concentration of or above 0.08;
    • Driving with a blood alcohol content of or above 0.08 where it is a third or subsequent conviction of that kind;
    • Failure to comply with requirement of a police officer made pursuant to s.67 of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA) if the person has previously been convicted of driving with a blood alcohol content of or above 0.08, has previously been convicted of failing to comply with a requirement under s.66 of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA) or – where the offence arose after an accident which caused grievous bodily harm or death to another person – has previously been convicted of failing to comply with a requirement under s.66 of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA) or driving with a blood alcohol concentration of or over 0.08;
    • Driving While Impaired by Drugs if the person has been convicted previously of driving with a blood alcohol content of or above 0.08 or has previously been convicted for failing to comply with a requirement under s.66 of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA); or
    • Failure to undergo a driver assessment of to provide a blood/ oral fluid sample pursuant to s.67AA of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA) if previously convicted of driving with a blood alcohol content of or exceeding 0.08 or failing to comply with a requirement under s.67A of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA):
  • A person must wait 2 months before applying for an EDL if the person was disqualified for:
    • Driving with a blood alcohol content of or above 0.08 where it is a second offence or the person has been previously convicted for an offence against s.67A of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA).

For any other disqualification a person must wait 21 days before being able to make an application for an EDL.

If a person was served with a disqualification notice by police, pursuant to s.71C of the Road Traffic Act 1974 (WA), then any period of disqualification under than notice is counted towards the relevant waiting period as above.

Conversely, if a person was imprisoned as a result of the disqualifying offence, any term of imprisonment is not counted towards the relevant waiting period.

Court to Which an Application for an Extraordinary Driver’s Licence Can be Made

If a person’s driver’s licence was disqualified by the Supreme Court or District Court any application for an EDL must be made in the court which imposed the disqualification.

Where the disqualification was made by a court of summary jurisdiction – for example, the Magistrates Court – or arose by virtue of the operation of a provision of a road law, any application for an EDL must be made to the Magistrates Court, or, if the applicant is a child, the Childrens Court.

Matters a Court Will Consider When Hearing an Application for an Extraordinary Driver’s Licence

When hearing an application for an EDL, the court can – pursuant to s.30 of The Act – grant the application for a period of not more than 12 months or it can refuse the application.

In making such a decision, the court will take into account such things as:

  • The safety of the public;
  • The general character of the applicant;
  • The circumstances of the applicant’s case;
  • The nature of the offence or offences which gave rise to the disqualification; and
  • The conduct of the applicant subsequent to the disqualification.

The court may only grant an application for an EDL after consideration of the above factors AND if satisfied that a refusal of the application would:

  • Deprive the applicant of the means of obtaining urgent medical treatment for an illness, disease or disability known to be suffered by the applicant or a person who is a member of the applicant’s family;
  • Place an undue financial burden on the applicant or their family, by depriving the applicant of their principal means of obtaining income; or
  • Deprive the applicant or a person who is a member of the applicant’s family of the only practicable means of travelling to and from the applicant’s place of employment.  This ground will only be satisfied if there are no other practicable means of transport available which includes public transport.

Making a Further Application if an Extraordinary Driver’s Licence Application is Refused

If an application for an EDL is refused by the court, the person may not make another application for an EDL for 6 months after that refusal.

Variation or Cancellation of an Extraordinary Driver’s Licence

Pursuant to s.35 of The Act, an application to vary the conditions of an EDL or to cancel certain conditions and replace them with other condition/s can be made by the person to whom the EDL was granted or the CEO (Chief Executive Officer of the department of the Public Service principally assisting in the administration of this Act).

The court hearing the application for variation can grant the variation/s sought if it is satisfied it is necessary on the basis the applicant has;

  • Changed their address;
  • Changed their employment or hours of employment; or
  • Any other matter the court considers to be sufficient.

The CEO may also make an application to cancel an EDL.  If such an application is made, the court will grant the order if it is satisfied:

  • The person is addicted to alcohol or drugs to such an extent as to render them  a danger to the public when driving a motor vehicle;
  • The person is suffering from a mental disorder or physical condition that is likely to impair their ability to drive a motor vehicle;
  • The person is no longer capable of driving in accordance with the conditions of the EDL; or
  • The person should no longer hold an EDL as a result of further offending since the EDL was granted, where that further offending involves offences under any road law whether in WA or any other jurisdiction.

Failing to Comply with the Conditions of an Extraordinary Driver’s Licence

Pursuant to s.38 of The Act, a person who is granted an EDL commits an offence if they do not comply with the conditions that the court imposed when granting the application or any subsequent variation.  A person charged with failing to comply with the conditions of an EDL can be fined up to a maximum of $1,200.00. 

In addition to a fine the court must also order that the EDL be cancelled unless to the court is satisfied that any special circumstances of the case mean it would be an adequate punishment to impose a fine only.

This offence is heard summarily in the Magistrates Court.

Call Now ButtonCall
%d bloggers like this: