DWI Q&A: How to Get a Limited License in Minnesota After DWI

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Without a doubt, being charged with DWI in Minnesota has the potential to have a profound impact on your daily routine. By knowing the ins and outs of the system, however, you can proceed with as little impact as possible.

How to Get a Limited License in MN

One of the most problematic consequences of facing a DWI-related arrest is that your driver’s license is suspended. Usually, first time offenders with an alcohol-concentration level of under 0.16 receive a penalty of no regular driving privileges for a 90-day period. But what if you need a way to get to work, or require transportation for other means?

It is possible to get your driving privileges back after just 15 days following your arrest by receiving what’s called a “limited license,” which is a piece of paper. To receive one, you’ll generally need to have one of the following reasons:

  • You need to drive to treatment/counseling
  • You need to drive to locations for one of the following purposes: work, education, support programs that are abstinence-based
  • You need to get to and from your job

In order to apply, you’ll need to contact your local DVS commissioner, who will then be able to tell you if you’re eligible. Aside from simply applying, in order to be eligible, you’ll also need to:

  • Pay a reinstatement fee
  • Pass a test

Limited License & Ignition Interlock

One-year limited licenses are also required in instances where the driver must use an ignition interlock device on their vehicle. Ignition interlock devices allow the driver to start the vehicle only when they breathe into the device, and it determines that they haven’t been drinking. To find out more about Minnesota’s Ignition Interlock Program, read our previous blog post, Re-gaining Your Driving Privileges with Minnesota’s limit Interlock Program.

Limited License VS a Restricted License

A limited license is broader, and generally sets the guidelines that the person in question can drive for the aforementioned purposes (school, work, support programs). Meanwhile, a restricted license specifically says the person can only drive the vehicle they’ve been assigned to use with the ignition interlock device.

Limited License Revocation

A person who has a limited license can have it revoked by the Commissioner of Public Safety if the person has been caught consuming alcohol or an illegal controlled substance. In such an instance, the driver would be considered dangerous or “inimical” to the safety of the public.

For more Minnesota DWI limited license info and qualification requirements, visit Minnesota’s Office of the Revisor of Statutes website.