ODL with an Ignition interlock FAQ

Watch this video for an explanation of the Occupational Driver's Licenses in Texas

Q: What is an “Occupational License”?

A: It is a temporary court order that allows to you drive while your regular license is suspended. It lasts for the term of your suspension – anywhere from three months to two years.

Q: Can I drive anytime and anywhere I want?

A: Yes, as long as you have an Ignition Interlock Device installed in your car. If you are just now getting an IID, here is a coupon for 10% Off monthly lease.

Q: When do I get the Occupational License? Can I get it before my regular license is suspended?

A: We apply for the ODL if/when your regular license is suspended – you can’t get it before the suspension happens.

Q: How will I know when the ALR hearing is going to be?

A: We send e-mails with updates on the status of the hearing.

Q: Do you need anything from me for the Occupational License?

A: YES! We can’t get the license without you getting us certain items (YOU CAN ALSO DOWNLOAD/PRINT A CHECKLIST AT THE TOP OF THIS PAGE):

  1. SR-22 Certificate of Financial Responsibility
  2. Copy of a recent Ignition Interlock Device download or receipt.
  3. Copy of your Texas Type AR (Certified Abstract) driving record
    • — If you have never had a Texas license, call our office at (512) 472-1113.
  4. A pay stub from your employer. If you are self-employed or unemployed, please write a letter addressed to the judge explaining why you need to drive.
  5. $350 filing fee for the Travis County Clerk. You pay this fee to our office (credit card, check, cash, money order) and we pay the Clerk when we file the petition.
  6. $135 license reinstatement and ODL fee for DPS (subject to change if you’ve had other issues with your license). You also pay this fee to our office, and we will pay DPS on your behalf when we send in the completed ODL.
  7. Come in to the office and sign the application for the ODL. Or, print out the "Verification" PDF below, sign it in front of a notary, and mail it to us or drop it off in the mailbox of our office. We need to have the original. Another option is to do a virtual notarization. Watch this video about how it works.

Q: How soon can you get the ODL?

A: It takes from 3-6 business days to get the ODL signed by the judge once you have given us all of the above documents/information/signature.

Q: What if I give you some (but not all) of the documents and information you need? Can you get started?

A: Unfortunately, no. Everything must be submitted to the Judge at the same time.

Q: What is a SR-22 certificate of financial responsibility?

A: SR-22 is a certification issued by a car insurance company showing proof that you are carrying the minimum liability coverage required by the state.

Q: Where should I get it?

A: We know the people who run Speedy SR-22. They are great! However, you can google “SR-22 Texas” and a thousand companies to choose from will pop up.

Q: Can I buy it from my regular insurance company? Will they raise my rates?

A: If your current insurance company sells SR-22, you can get it from them. Unfortunately, I don’t know if your rates will be affected by this decision. This is why many of our clients prefer to buy SR-22 from a different company.

Q: What do I do with the proof of SR-22 insurance?

A: Send us a copy. We need to attach it to the application for your ODL.

This is what an SR-22 certificate looks like:

sr-22 image.png

Q: Where do I get a copy of my driving record?

A: If you have your Texas license- Order your AR driving record online through the DPS website. The cost is $22.

    If you never had a Texas license- Call the office at (512) 472-1113 and we can help you.

How to get your Texas AR driving record online

Q: How do I check my license eligibility online?

A: After the judge signs the judgment suspending your license, it usually takes DPS 1-2 days to process the license suspension. I recommend checking your license online after the hearing to make sure your license is still eligible during the “grace period.” Here is the link to check license eligibility.

If the suspension has not been processed, the status will read “ELIGIBLE.” If you check your license and the status is “ELIGIBLE” but you see a suspension date below, this means DPS knows you have a pending suspension. This is a placeholder suspension and not your actual suspension date (i.e., the suspension dates you would have served had we not requested the hearing and tried to stop the suspension).

If the status reads “NOT ELIGIBLE”, then the suspension has been processed and your license is suspended. The suspension shown below should be accurate.

Q: Why do I bring a payment of $350 to you? Why not give it directly to the Travis County Clerk?

A: The County Clerk’s ODL filing system only accepts payments from law office accounts.

Q: What about the $135 (for reinstatement fee)? Where do I pay that?

A: You pay this fee to our office. We will send DPS an office check when we submit your completed ODL to them. Office checks are easier to track than personal money orders. We want to make sure we can track the check in case DPS forgets to credit your account (unfortunately DPS has done this in the past).

Q: Why do you mail it in and not me?

A: We mail everything to DPS for you. We do this because so many of our previous clients have forgotten to mail the documents to DPS or lose them altogether. We provide this service for free.

Q: Is the ODL just paperwork? Or does it look like a regular license?

A: Once the judge signs the ODL order, we give you a certified copy of the order that describes the terms of the ODL. You can drive using only this paperwork for 45 days. Within that 45 day period, you should receive a physical ODL in the mail from DPS that looks like a regular driver’s license. Once you receive the hard copy of the ODL, it must be kept with the certified order you were given previously. Both of these items together make up your ODL. One is not valid without the other after the 45 day period is over.

Q: What if they don’t send me the license before the 45 days end?

A: This happens sometimes. Call us and we’ll discuss the options. Usually the license shows up within a week or two. We may be able to get you an amended order to cover you while you wait for the hard copy in the mail.

Q: What if I don’t want to get an Occupational License? It sounds expensive and inconvenient.

A: You do not have to get an ODL. However, you can’t drive legally during the suspension period without one. If you do drive without an ODL and they catch you, then it is another class B misdemeanor (Driving While License Invalid).

Q: Do I have to get an occupational license right away? Can I see how hard it is to use public transportation first?

A: You don’t have to get an ODL right away. We can get one whenever you decide you want it.

Q: I still have questions.

A: No problem. Call our office at (512) 472-1113. Or you can e-mail me at charlie@roadmanlaw.com.