Getting your Massachusetts Driver’s License reinstated from an out of state DUI suspension or revocation can be a very frustrating process. This is because you must satisfy the reinstatement requirements of the jurisdiction where the DUI offense occurred as well as the requirements of MassDOT.
You cannot get a Massachusetts Hardship or Cinderella license while your right to operate a motor vehicle is under suspension or revocation in any other state or jurisdiction. This means that you cannot get an DUI in New Hampshire, for example, and then get a Mass. Hardship License while the State of New Hampshire has your driving privileges under suspension in that state. Instead, you must satisfy all outstanding obligations to the State of New Hampshire, which may include an SR-22 Insurance Certificate, which proves to the Financial Responsibility Section of the NH DMV that you have adequate liability coverage.
You can reinstate in Massachusetts only when your outstanding obligations to the other state has been satisfied. However, your troubles usually do not end there. This is because the Mass. Registry will penalize you for an out of state DUI conviction or motor vehicle infraction as if the incident had occurred here in Massachusetts. This means that in addition to whatever penalty you served in the state where the conviction occurred, you must serve the penalty imposed by Massachusetts Law. This penalty will depend primarily on your driving record, with increased suspension periods based on the number of prior DUI convictions or program assignments, regardless of where or when they occurred.
Fortunately, in many cases, there are ways to avoid or reduce the suspension imposed by MassDOT for out of state convictions. However, this requires a Registry Hearing and situations like this must be handled on a case-by-case basis. The first step in this process is to collect all relevant court documentation from the state where the offense occurred. Examples of important items to collect and retain include a copy of the court docket or an abstract showing the charges, offense date, disposition date, and outcome of the case.
If you need assistance dealing with an out of state DUI, please contact my office for a consultation and review of your situation. My office has successfully worked with out of state DUI lawyers to achieve the best outcome in these cases, so as to avoid or reduce the suspension and revocation consequences.