Below is an overview of some driver's license issues in Minnesota. Read through our Definitions tab for commonly used words related to driver's license issues, and read through our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for more information.
Driving privileges may be impacted or restricted in a number of different ways. One common restriction is suspension of a driver’s license.
A driver’s license suspension is when a person’s driving privileges are taken away for a temporary period of time. This means that the driver’s license is not valid and a person cannot legally drive during the period of suspension.
There are a number of reasons that someone’s driver’s license may be suspended, including unpaid child support, an unpaid judgment resulting from an incident with an uninsured vehicle, traffic tickets or criminal cases, among other things.
Canceled Driver’s License
When a person’s driving privileges have been taken away and they do not have a right to a driver’s license nor the right to drive. This could happen for a variety of reasons, such as being unable to pass a driver’s test through the Department of Public Safety, committing a crime that resulted in cancellation of the driver’s license, or not qualifying for a driver’s license under MN law. A person cannot legally drive while their license is canceled.
A final court order in a civil lawsuit. A civil judgment may include an amount of money to be paid by one party to the other party.
Expired Driver’s License
A driver's license that has passed its expiration date without being renewed. Driver’s licenses are valid for a specific period of time. A license expires at the end of this time period and drivers are responsible for renewing their licenses on or before the expiration date. A driver’s license is not valid past the expiration date and a person cannot legally drive while their license is expired.
The ability of the MN Department of Public Safety (Driver and Vehicle Services) to revoke your driver’s license. They can revoke your driver’s license if you were found to be driving, and you failed or refused to take the test to check for drugs or alcohol in your system.
A driver’s license with limited driving privileges. For example: the license only allows the driver to drive on certain days and for a limited amount of hours per week.
Minnesota Department of Public Safety
The state department that oversees driver’s licenses. Driver and Vehicle Services Division is an office within the Department of Public Safety.
Revoked Driver’s License
When a person’s driving privileges have been taken away. A person cannot legally drive while their license is revoked. This may happen because of a drug or alcohol related offense or other traffic or criminal offense. In order to get driving privileges back (also called “reinstated”), there may be a number of steps to go through, including following court orders, paying fees, taking a test through the Department of Public Safety, or following through with other requirements.
Suspended Driver’s License
When a person’s driving privileges are taken away for a temporary period of time. A person cannot legally drive while their license is suspended. Depending on the reason for the suspension, the license may be reinstated after the suspension period ends and fees are paid, or after the person takes some action, like paying off child support or traffic tickets.
The forms needed to request reinstatement of a driver’s license depend on the reason for the suspension.
- Unpaid Child Support: Motion to Reinstate Driver's License (child support)
- These forms are only to be used when the child support office is involved in the case. The MN Judicial Branch does not publish forms for cases where the child support office is not involved. Check with your local law library or talk to a lawyer in those situations.
- Implied Consent: The MN Judicial Branch does not publish forms for an implied consent petition. Check with your local law library or talk to a lawyer in those situations.
- Reasons other than Unpaid Child Support or Implied Consent: Petition to Reinstate Driver's License
The following is a list of some
of the laws and rules that relate to drivers’ license issues. We encourage you to talk to a lawyer
to get advice on how the laws and rules may affect your case. Learn more about Laws, Rules & Legal Research
You can get more help with your legal research at law libraries throughout Minnesota. County law libraries are open to the public, but hours will vary. Click MN County Law Libraries to see a directory of law libraries and their hours. You may also be able to get help with legal research from the State Law Library.
Talk with a lawyer to learn how the laws and rules may affect your case.