DUI, Drink Driving, Traffic & Licences

DUI, Drink Driving, Drug Driving, Traffic Offences & Licences
Aitken Whyte Lawyers Sunshine Coast

DUI, Drink Driving, Drug Driving & Traffic Offence Lawyers And Solicitors For Maroochydore, Sunshine Coast, Qld

DUI, Drink Driving, Drug Driving, Traffic Offence & Licences

The services our team of solicitors offers in all Courts on the Sunshine Coast include:

Aitken Whyte Lawyers at Maroochydore on the Sunshine Coast will give you a fixed fee for appearing in court with you or preparing all the necessary documents and affidavits that you will need to safely manage your court attendance.

Our skilled solicitors literally appear hundreds of times every year in courts on the Sunshine Coast. They know what they are doing so you have the confidence to leave it in our capable hands.

We regularly see people in court representing themselves on the belief that they are saving some money. It can be a pitfall because the legislation that governs people’s rights and obligations in relation to drink driving, drug driving, unlicenced driving, disqualified driving and traffic offence matters in Queensland are complex and change regularly.

Representation by experienced, confident and competent lawyers at such an important point does save significant money and stress and whether you are appearing in court for a traffic offence or applying for a special hardship order, restricted work licence or for the removal of your licence disqualification.

Most importantly, we will give you the best chance in court and get you back on the road as soon as possible.

Take the stress out of appearing and have some certainty.

Aitken Whyte Lawyers will take control of your matter and ensure the outcome is not a lottery. Our lawyers will give advice on the anticipated sentence and penalty you will receive and the likely period of disqualification. If a disqualification should be avoided we will make sure this happens. You can be rest assured the solicitor from Aitken Whyte Lawyers who is dealing your matter will give you the personal service you should expect.

Drink Driving Lawyers, Drug Driving, DUI Solicitors

Anyone charged with a drink driving, DUI or drug driving offence in Queensland will be disqualified from holding a driving licence for a period of time. There is no tolerance under Queensland laws for anyone caught driving with a blood alcohol concentration above the required minimum level or driving under the influence of drug or with a relevant drug in their system. The minimum disqualification for a first offender open licence holder is 1 month. Those periods increase dramatically depending on the blood alcohol concentration of the driver or the drug and whether it is a second or further offence, the person’s traffic history and the circumstances of the offence itself.

The need for a licence for a lot of people is crucial not only for their daily lives and getting their family and children to and from school, going to the shops and taking them to sport activities, but quite often for work. A need for a licence may be required not only for getting to and from work due to the lack of public transport but also for carrying out their work obligations. 

Our experienced lawyers will ensure that any disqualification you receive is the minimum that can be achieved given your set of circumstances. It is our role to present your matter to the Court in the best light to ensure the period you are off the road is kept to as short a time as possible.

In more serious occasions, there may also be other considerations about the penalty and sentence that might be imposed. You should be well aware of the outcomes of your matter before you go to Court so we will give you a good idea of the result that you should expect.

While a fine is usually a further penalty imposed together with disqualifications, there are other options available to the Court such as probation periods coupled with attending driving programs or imprisonment including suspended sentences. It will all depend on the severity of the circumstances and the history.

Restricted ‘work’ licences

If faced with the prospect of losing your job, it makes sense to call us first before you go to Court to see if you can apply for a restricted ‘work’ licence. You only get one go at making the application so if you get it wrong, you not only won’t be able to drive, but you may well lose your job and with the wider ramifications that this entails.

Depending on your circumstances, we will advise you whether you are eligible to apply for a work licence and if you are, then give you advice on your prospects of obtaining such a licence. Our results speak for themselves in applying for a licence. If you are, we will provide a fixed fee arrangement to produce all your documents and appear for you at the application.

The court needs to be convinced about 2 things before it will grant you a work licence:

  • First, that you are a fit and proper person to hold a restricted licence having regard to the safety of other road users and the public generally. The Court will look at your driving history and this offence and the circumstances surrounding each to determine these matters. 
  • That a refusal to grant a licence will cause extreme hardship to the applicant or your family by depriving you of the means of earning your livelihood. Basically this means that without a licence you won’t be able to continue to earn a living and this will cause extreme hardship to you or your family. This is an overriding question for the court and while the court will be reluctant not to grant a licence if the applicant is going to lose their job, if the traffic history, previous applications or circumstances of the offence are poor, then the licence may still not be granted.
Generally, if you meet the following criteria, you may be eligible to apply for a work licence: 
  1. You have not lost your licence in the last 5 years (other than a SPER suspension or Special Hardship Order); 
  2. You are the holder of a Queensland licence; 
  3. Your BAC reading was below 0.15 or you were driving with a relevant drug; 
  4. You were not engaged in an activity directly connected with the means of earning a livelihood at the time the offence was committed; 
  5. You were not required to have a nil alcohol reading. 
  6. You were not the holder of a restricted work licence at the time.

Don’t take the chance of not being successful.

Special Hardship Orders – Licence Appeals

Where a driver has accumulated too many demerit points on a good driving behavior period or has a high speed offence, their licence will be suspended. Obviously the results of not having a licence for some people can be disastrous either financially or for the family.

As long as certain conditions are met, a driver has the right to apply to the Court for a Special Hardship Order. Those conditions include:

  1. The driver held a valid Queensland licence before the suspension took effect; 
  2. The driver can’t have had their licence disqualified, suspended or cancelled in the 5 years before the suspension; 
  3. The driver has not been convicted of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle in the last 5 years.
An application can be made and the Court will grant a licence if it can be satisfied that:  
  • The applicant is a fit and proper person to continue to drive having regard to their traffic history and the safety of others and the public; and 
  • A refusal would either: 
    • Cause extreme hardship in that the applicant would lose their ability to earn a living; or
    • Cause severe and unusual hardship to the applicant or the applicant’s family for reasons not related to earning a livelihood.

Queensland Transport will write to a licence holder advising them if their licence is to be suspended. They will give a particular date from which the driver is not allowed to drive. Generally an application can then be lodged within a 21 day period and once the application is filed in Court and a copy served on Queensland Transport.

Seeing there is limited time within which to make the application, and affidavits need to be prepared and filed with the application, you should contact Aitken Whyte Lawyers as soon as you receive the letter from Queensland Transport.

Unlicenced and Disqualified driving

Being caught driving without a licence can mean you can be further disqualified for significant periods of time. There are many reasons why a person doesn't have a licence such as due to accumulation of demerit points, SPER suspensions due to non-payment of fines or they have failed to renew their licence. Each different circumstance will mean a different end result with some situations not requiring automatic periods of licence disqualifications while others may involve months or years of disqualifications.

If you have been caught driving while already disqualified by Court order, this can lead to serious consequences for you. There are minimum disqualification periods in such instances of a further 2 year disqualification, and that period will sit on top of any existing disqualification you have.

Of more concern however is the fact that you have been caught driving while a Court has told you not to. The Court’s take a strong view of such situations as basically you can be seen to be in contempt of a court order. It is in these more serious situations that Courts can and do impose imprisonment as part of the penalty they impose.

Removal of disqualification to hold a licence 

Any driver who has been disqualified by a court from holding a licence for a period in excess of 2 years, can apply after that 2 years is up to the Court to have the disqualification removed.

If these circumstances are relevant to you, you should call us to talk about your situation and we will advise you on whether we believe you have a good chance of having the disqualification removed.

The Court will be interested in what you have been up to in the intervening period and concerned that you have not been bringing yourself further to the attention of the authorities. The court will also be interested as to why a licence should be granted to you. If your life and work would be made easier by the granting of a licence or you are offered a better role if you had a licence then these are relevant considerations. The Court will also consider the circumstances surrounding the disqualification in the first place.

There are a number of factors that need to be measured when making such an application and the material that needs to be presented to the court goes into a lot of detail. We have significant experience in bringing such applications successfully.

Other traffic matters 

There may be other reasons you need to go to a Court for a traffic or licence related matter such as dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, careless driving or impounding of motor vehicles. If any of these are relevant for you, you should contact us first to see what assistance we can provide you.

Office Location and Contact Details

Sunshine Coast

Maroochydore
Aitken Whyte Lawyers
7/31-33 Plaza Parade, Maroochydore
Ph: +617 5408 0655
Fax: +617 3211 9311
Email Us