Are you a professional driver or are you considering becoming one? If you drive as a job, there are certain laws and rules that apply to you as a professional. It’s not always fun taking care of legalities, but it is necessary. Here’s a look at some of the main points involved in becoming and remaining a professional driver.
1. Have You Been Charged With DUI?
If you’re already a professional driver but were charged with DUI in your own time, you can apply for a work licence so you can still drive for work purposes. You’ll need to prove that you need a licence to earn a living and that your family will be in extreme hardship if you don’t work. Consider consulting with lawyers who specialise in traffic law, like GC Traffic Lawyers . True traffic law experts have a stronger chance of helping you get your driving life back.
2. Have You Accrued Demerit Points?
Professional drivers have a threshold of 14 demerit points, unlike unrestricted licence holders, for whom the threshold is 13 points. Other than this 1-point difference, everything else is the same – that is, you’re sent a Notice of Suspension or refused a licence if you apply for one.
3. What Kind Of Driving Do You Actually Do?
In the past, some people mistakenly thought they qualified as a professional driver just by driving a vehicle in order to do their jobs. For example, if you’re driving a motor vehicle as a tow truck operator, tradesperson, food vendor, vehicle repairer, salesperson or carer, this is considered ‘incidental’ driving. The same goes for driving an implement as part of your job, like a bulldozer or road roller.
4. What Is The Eligibility Criteria?
You must have an unrestricted driver licence and drive a motor vehicle to transport goods interstate or intra-state, or drive a bus, taxi or private hire car.
5. How Many Hours Do You Drive?
To be considered a professional driver, you must be earning an income from driving and drive for more than 20 hours per week. Unfortunately, volunteer drivers don’t qualify.
6. Are You From Another State?
Just as you would with a personal driver licence, if you have recently moved interstate, you need to apply and be granted a licence for the state you’re now living/working in. Then you should be able to apply for professional driver status without much further ado.
7. What Exactly Do You Need For Your Application?
You’ll need to meet all the aforementioned criteria for a professional driver. If you have been suspended, bring your notice of suspension with you. Complete a Professional Driver Declaration form. If you drive a bus, taxi or hire car, provide your current Driver Authority. If you have been refused a licence renewal because you’ve reached 13 demerit points, you can still apply for professional driver status if your licence hasn’t been disqualified or expired for longer than six months.
As you can see, being a professional driver first requires a fair amount of red tape. But so long as you follow the law and adhere to the rules, you shouldn’t have any issues becoming or remaining a professional driver!