Hardship License Plate

How To Obtain a Special License Plate After Multiple Convictions for Driving Under the Influence in Georgia

Some convictions require you to surrender your vehicle's license plate. For example, under O.C.G.A. § 40-2-136(a), a person who has been convicted of a second or subsequent Driving Under the Influence offense within five years will be required to surrender the license plates of all vehicles registered in the offender's name.

Not only does this directly affect the offender, but it can also have an adverse effect on other household members. A family member may drive a car that is registered in your name, or you may share a single vehicle.

In these situations, you can get a special license plate that will allow a member of your household to drive the vehicle after you have surrendered your tag.  The tag-holder must first surrender the tag before being considered for the hardship license plate, and as a result, his or her family will be without the ability to drive their vehicle for at least a few days.

The Georgia Department of Driver Services Rule 375-2-3-.03 governs Affidavits of Need for the Issuance of a Special License Plate After Multiple Convictions for Driving Under the Influence. To be eligible for this special license plate, the vehicle co-owner or a member of the applicant's family, other than the applicant, must be “completely dependent upon the motor vehicle for the necessities of life and subjected to undue hardship without the issuance of a special license plate.”

To be considered a member of the same household, the Department driver's license records must show that the same street address is listed for both the owner of the car (who has surrendered his or her tag) and the family member wishing to drive the car.  The records will reflect the street address that you provided the Department to show your proof of residency. The application for a special license plate will be denied if no other member of the applicant's household has a valid driver's license.

When you go to your local tag office to get this special license plate, make sure to bring the following:

  1. A completed form, which was approved by the Department of Driver Services. 
  2. Proof that you surrendered your tag. This can be in the form of a receipt or written acknowledgement from the court or local tag agent to whom you surrendered the previously issued license plate.  Sometimes the tag is directly surrendered to your probation officer.
  3. You must provide information about the person who will be driving the vehicle. This information includes that person's name, date of birth, and driver's license number.
  4. Proof of insurance. You will need to know the name of your insurance company, the policy number assigned to the vehicle, and the period of coverage for the insurance policy.

When you go to the tag office, you will have to wait up to 3 business days to hear back about your application status. During this time, a committee will determine whether you qualify for this special tag. The fee for this tag will be $20.00.

Is There An Alternative Solution?

An alternative solution (which is often far easier) is to transfer the title to the vehicle to the person you want to drive it.  However, this is usually only possible if the vehicle is owned without a lien.  Also, it is virtually impossible to switch the registration for a leased vehicle, although the vehicle could be purchased from the leasing company.

For more information on obtaining a hardship tag, contact your Atlanta DUI Attorney today.  Atlanta DUI Attorney Richard Lawson is a former DUI Prosecutor with more than 25 years experience defending people accused of DUI throughout Metro Atlanta and North Georgia. Call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  We are here when you need us most.

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Georgia Driver's License Resources:

Georgia Department of Driver Services

Georgia's Secure Document Requirements

Alcoholics Anonymous of Georgia

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