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Special Hardship Orders

A special hardship order is a type of order that can be made by a court which enables a person whose drivers licence is otherwise suspended, to continue to drive subject to certain conditions. A special hardship order, which is different from a restricted or work licence, can be made where a person has had their drivers licence suspended by the Department of Transport and Main Roads for one of the following reasons:

  • Driving more than 40kph over the speed limit
  • Accumulating too many demerit points (either on a provisional, open or good behaviour licence).

A combination of the above two reasons (called a dual suspension, imposed when a person loses too many demerit points because of driving more than 40kph over the speed limit).


Any person whose open, provisional or good behaviour, licence has been suspended for one of the reasons stated above, is entitled to apply for a special hardship order, unless within the last 5 years:

  • The person’s licence was suspended (including if that person was granted a special hardship order previously), and/or
  • The person was disqualified from driving, and/or
  • The person’s authority to drive in QLD on a non-QLD licence was cancelled, and/or
  • The person was made ineligible to apply for a licence because of committing driving offences while unlicensed, and/or
  • The person was convicted of driving dangerously.


The application process for a special hardship order is quite involved and the Armstrong Legal team stand ready to advise you on the process and to assist you in putting together and making, your application.

To apply for a special hardship order, you are required to do the following:

  1. Complete a Special Hardship Order Application Form, which is available from a Magistrates Court or a Department of Transport and Main Roads customer service centre.
  2. Lodge, this application form, along with supporting affidavits or other evidence, and your Notice of Driver Licence Suspension with a Magistrates Court within 21 days of your licence being suspended.
  3. Serve a stamped copy of your application (including all supporting evidence) on the Department of Transport and Main Roads as soon as possible after lodgement.

Once you have lodged your application for a special hardship order, your licence suspension will be lifted until the day before the court hears the matter.

where to next?

Traffic offences are treated seriously in Queensland. If you have been in an accident, received a licence suspension or received a charge and summons to attend court, it is important to obtain competent legal advice as early as possible. Our lawyers are highly experienced and understand the difficulties you face without a licence. We can guide you through the process while dealing with the various authorities related to your matter.

Why Choose Armstrong Legal?

Contact Armstrong Legal:
Brisbane: (07) 3229 4448
Sydney: (02) 9261 4555
Melbourne: (03) 9620 2777
Canberra: (02) 6288 1100
Perth: (08) 9321 5505