Suspended License in Texas

Driver License Suspension in Texas

NOTICE: Driver Responsibility Program Repealed

On September 1, 2019, the state of Texas ended its Driver Responsibility Program (DRP), under which your license could be suspended for failing to pay additional annual surcharges on top of traffic ticket fees. All licenses suspended under the DRP are now reinstated. For a detailed breakdown of what this means for you, visit the DPS' questions and answers on the repeal.

If your license was suspended under the DRP, check your driving record to ensure it reflects your license reinstatement.

If your Texas driver's license and driving privileges have been suspended by the Department of Public Safety (DPS), you'll need to reinstate your license by satisfying the requirements and paying your reinstatement fees.

The DPS can suspend or revoke your driver's license for various reasons, including:

  • Being evaluated as medically unable to drive.
  • Driving or boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DWI or BWI).
  • Committing multiple traffic violations.
  • Having no car insurance while being involved in an accident resulting in injury, death, or at least $1,000 in property damage.

On this page you'll find information about your license suspensions, how to reinstate your driving privileges, and how to obtain an occupational license.

About Your Suspended License in TX

When your driver's license has been suspended, the Texas DPS will mail you an enforcement notification.

NOTE: If your current address is not on file with the TX Department of Public Safety, you will not receive your notification, but your driver's license will still be suspended. If you need to change your address, please see our Changing Your Address in Texas page.

The length of your driver's license suspension will vary depending on the offense.

If you were convicted of a DWI, your license can be suspended:

  • For up to 2 years, if you are 21 years old or older.
  • For 1 year, if you are under 21 years old and:
    • An additional 180 days, if you don't complete an Alcohol Education Program.
    • 90 days if you are required to get an interlock ignition and to complete community service.

NOTE: If you refuse to take a blood or breath test, you can still receive the same driver's license suspensions listed above.

Administrative License Revocation

In addition to criminal charges and suspensions you may face for DWI and alcohol related convictions, you can also face license suspensions under the Administrative License Revocation (ALR) Program.

If you fail a breath or blood test, or you refuse to submit to one when pulled over for DWI, a police officer will take your TX license and issue you a 40-day temporary driving permit.

You have 15 days from your arrest, to challenge your pending ALR license suspension and request a hearing. If you don't request a hearing within this time, your license will be suspended after 40 days. To request an ALR hearing, see “Suspension Hearings and Appeals" below.

Under the ALR program, your TX driver's license can be suspended for 90 days to 2 years.

If you are under 21 years old, you can also receive a 30, 60, or 90-day license suspension for:

  • Buying or attempting to buy alcohol.
  • Possessing or consuming alcohol.
  • Public intoxication.

If you are convicted of a drug or substance offense, your TX driver's license will be suspended for 180 days.

Other offenses and violations may carry different suspension terms. Please refer to your TX DPS suspension enforcement notification or contact the Texas Department of Public Safety for more information:

  • Phone:
    • (512) 424-2600 (English).
    • (512) 424-7181 (Spanish).
  • E-mail: Use the e-mail form to e-mail the TX DPS.

NOTE: If you drive while your license is suspended, you can receive an additional suspension for the same duration as your current suspension.

Check Your Driver License Status

You can check the status of your driver's license on the Texas DPS website. After you enter your personal information, you will see:

  • Your driver license status.
  • Any fees you owe.
  • Any documents or items you must submit.

NOTE: Driver's license suspensions will always remain on your complete driving record and can lead to higher car insurance premiums.

For information about requesting your driving record, please see our Driving Records in Texas page.

You may be able to lower your driving record points and dismiss traffic tickets by enrolling in an online defensive driving course.

Suspension Hearings and Appeals

Depending on the type of suspension you have, you may be able to contest the decision with a hearing or appeal.

If you are facing a license suspension under the ALR program (see “ Administrative License Revocation" above), you can request a hearing before the suspension goes into effect.

NOTE: You may need to pay a fee to have a hearing or appeal.

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Suspension Hearings

Within 20 days of a license suspension, you can request a hearing to contest it.

NOTE: You must request a hearing within 15 days of receiving your notice for an ALR suspension. See “Administrative License Revocation" above.

If your request is received in time, the Texas DPS will mail you a letter that includes your hearing date, time, and location. If you request a hearing too late, you will received a denial notice in the mail.

NOTE: Your hearing request can take up to 120 days to process and schedule.

Suspension Appeals

If you've already had a hearing, but want to contest the decision, you can request an appeal within 30 days of receiving your hearing suspension letter.

To request an appeal for your suspension, mail a stamped and certified appeal petition from the court by certified mail to:

Department of Public Safety
Enforcement and Compliance Service
P.O. Box 4087
Austin, TX 78773-0320

To appeal an ALR suspension, return your certified petition to the Texas DPS:

  • By mail to:
      Director of Hearings – ALR Program P.O. Box 15327 Austin, TX 78761-5327
  • In person to:
      Director of Hearings – ALR Program 5805 N Lamar Blvd, Main Building Austin, TX 78752-0300

NOTE: If your appeal request is approved, the DPS will remove your license suspension for 90 days. Once a final decision is reached, you must return a certified copy of the court's decision to the Texas DPS at one of the addresses above.

Reinstate Your Texas Driver's License

When your driving privileges are suspended, you'll need to wait out your suspension period, complete your requirements, and pay your fees before you can fully reinstate your drivers license.

Your reinstatement fees and requirements will vary depending on the reason for your license suspension.

To reinstate your driver license, use the TX DPS online license eligibility service. You'll need to provide:

  • Your driver license number.
  • Your birth date.
  • The last 4 digits of your Social Security number.
  • Payment for the reinstatement fee.
    • The Texas DPS accepts VISA, MasterCard, Discover and American Express credit cards. Please note that:
      • Any court fees must be paid to the court.
      • ALR license suspensions require a $125 reinstatement fee.
      • If you've recently made a payment with the TX DPS online service, you must wait 72 hours before you can pay your reinstatement fees online.
    • If you cannot pay online, you can submit a check with your suspension compliance documents (see below).

You will also need to submit any required suspension compliance documents and a Financial Responsibility Insurance Certificate (SR22) (from your insurance company) to the Department of Public Safety.

  • By mail:
    • Department of Public Safety
    • Enforcement and Compliance Service
    • P.O. Box 4087
    • Austin, TX 78773-0320
  • By fax: (512) 424-2848.
  • By e-mail(documents must be PDF files):

Your Financial Responsibility Insurance Certificate (SR-22) must be maintained for 2 years.

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Medical Suspensions, DWI, & Uninsured Accident Requirements

Below are some additional requirements you may need to satisfy depending on the type of suspension.

Medical Advisory Board Suspension

If the TX Medical Advisory Board (MAB) suspended your driver's license, you may need to:

  • Be approved by the MAB.
  • Submit your medical information.
  • Pass a driving test.

DWI/DUI Suspensions

If your driver's license was suspended for a DWI, you may need to:

  • Complete a 12-hour Alcohol Education Program within 180 days of your conviction.
  • Complete a Repeat Offender's DWI Drug Education Program.

If your driver license was suspended for a drug-related offense, you'll need to complete a 15-hour Drug Education Program.

Ignition Interlock Device

If you are required to get an ignition interlock device (IID), you'll need to pay the $10 IID fee to add an interlock restriction to your driver's license.

Suspensions for Being Uninsured

If your suspension was the result of being involved in an accident while uninsured, you'll need to submit 1 of the following documents:

If you have questions about your specific situation and the documents required, visit the TX DPS license eligibility online service or contact the Department of Public Safety:

  • Phone:
    • (512) 424-2600 (English).
    • (512) 424-7181 (Spanish).
  • E-mail: Use the e-mail form to contact the TX DPS through its website.

Obtain a Restricted Occupational License

You may be eligible for a temporary occupational license, if you need to drive for:

  • Work.
  • School.
  • Carrying out necessary household functions.

You cannot request a restricted license if:

  • Your license was suspended for medical reasons.
  • Your license was suspended for failing to pay child support.
  • You wish to drive a commercial vehicle.

Restricted licenses are usually valid for up to 1 year. They can be issued for a maximum of 2 years if granted by the court.

To request an occupational license:

  • Visit the court in the county where your suspension occurred and make a petition.
  • Obtain a signed court order, which can be used as a 30-day temporary license.
  • Provide the Texas DPS with:
    • Your certified occupational license petition and court order.
    • A Financial Responsibility Insurance Certificate (SR22), from your insurance company.
    • Any required suspension documents.
    • Your drivers license reinstatement fees. (See “Reinstate Your TX Driver's License" above.)
    • Your $10 occupational license fee.

Submit the above in person at a TX DPS office or mail them to:

Department of Public Safety
Enforcement and Compliance Service
P.O. Box 4087
Austin, TX 78773-0320

Your occupational license request will be processed immediately unless your driver's license was suspended due to:

  • An alcohol or drug-related offense: You must wait 90 days.
  • An intoxication conviction: You must wait 180 days.
  • 2 administrative license revocations or more on your driving record: You must wait 1 year.

NOTE: If you want to apply for an ID card, please see our Identification Cards in Texas page.

Hardship Driver's License in Texas

The Texas Department of Public Safety may issue a hardship driver license to a person who complies with the requirements for the Hardship License for the following reasons:

1. The failure or refusal to issue the license will result in an unusual economic hardship to the family of the applicant.

2. The hardship license is needed due to the illness of a member of the applicant's family, or

3. A hardship license is necessary because the applicant is enrolled in a vocational education program and requires a driver's license to participate in the program.

You can download an Application for a Texas Hardship Driver License (Form DL-77).

CDL Suspensions in Texas

If you have a TX commercial driver's license (CDL), you are subject to both Texas and federal suspended license regulations, which are controlled by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).

Your CDL can be suspended for a period ranging from 60 days to a lifetime for criminal convictions, including:

  • DWI and alcohol convictions.
  • Serious traffic violations.
  • Being involved in a felony.
  • Convictions and violations committed in a noncommercial vehicle.

Under the ALR program (see “ About Your Suspended License in TX" above) your CDL may be suspended for 1 year or 3 years depending on your offense.

Your fines, reinstatement requirements, and duration of your suspension will vary depending on the conviction.

For a full list of CDL suspension types and periods, visit both the Texas DPS website and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration website.

To reinstate your CDL after the term of your suspension, please see “ Reinstate Your Driver's License" above.

If you apply for a restricted/occupational license, you can only use it to operate non-commercial vehicles.

NOTE: If your CDL suspension was caused by 2 violations or more within 3 years that were deemed to be serious traffic violations, your license will automatically be reinstated after 60 days.

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