SPECIAL HARDSHIP ORDER QLD (SHO)

At Craven Lawyers Brisbane we will help you get back on the road by assisting you to apply for a Special Hardship Order. When applying for a Special Hardship Order there are certain rules that need to be followed, so it is critical you have someone such as ourselves doing the work for you. Our traffic lawyers prepare comprehensive affidavit material for clients so that all of the critical information is covered to ensure we achieve the ultimate outcome. Don’t miss out by doing it yourself- engage an expert.  

Our Success Rate

%

Our Guarantee

To approved clients, we guarantee the Court will make you a Special Hardship Order. We are the first Queensland law firm to give such a guarantee. If the Court doesn’t make you a Special Hardship Order, then we will not charge you.

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1800 529 000 FOR YOUR

FIXED FEE QUOTE

To give you peace of mind, we offer an affordable fixed fee service for clients applying for a Special Hardship Order. The fixed fee is all-inclusive and includes:

  • Communicating with your lawyer.
  • Meetings with your lawyer.
  • Drafting your application for the Special Hardship Order.
  • Drafting affidavits to support your application for the Special Hardship Order.
  • One of our lawyers attending Court with you and speaking on your behalf at the hearing of your application for the Special Hardship Order.
  • Our lawyers communicating with Queensland Transport regarding your application.
  • Giving you advice about what you can do to improve your chances of getting the Special Hardship Order.

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Do I need a lawyer to apply for a

Special Hardship Order?

 

The laws and processes in obtaining a Special Hardship Order are not straightforward. They are complex and technical in nature.  If you make an application to the Court for a Special Hardship Order and you are unsuccessful then you cannot appeal. The decision of the Magistrate is final and your driver licence will be suspended for 6 months from your Court date.

Before attempting to apply to the court for a Special Hardship Order, we recommend you get some legal advice. You want to make sure you are eligible to make the application, and secondly you will be successful. Remember, you only get one shot!

How Craven Lawyers can help you apply for a Special Hardship Order

Our lawyers will assist you in your application to the Court by:

  • Drafting professional affidavits that will include all the relevant information necessary to persuade the Magistrate to grant you the Order.

 

  • Communicating with the Department of Queensland Transport and Main Roads. The Department of Queensland Transport and Main Roads can oppose your application. A representative from Queensland Transport generally attends Court. The representative will tell the Magistrate if your application is opposed. We avoid being caught by surprise at Court by making sure in advance that Queensland Transport has no issues. We also communicate with them to try and reach an agreement about the conditions to be imposed so they are not too restrictive.

 

  • Attending Court with you at the hearing of your application. Our lawyers make submissions to the Magistrate why you should be granted the Order and what conditions should be included.
What is a Special Hardship Order?

A Special Hardship Order is an order made by the court authorising a person to continue driving a motor vehicle in certain circumstances.

 

Who can apply for a Special Hardship Order?

You can only apply for a Special Hardship Order if you have an open or provisional licence that has been suspended because you:-

(a) were convicted of driving more than 40 km/hour over the speed limit.

(b) accumulated two or more demerit points while you were subject to a good driving behaviour period.

 

Who cannot apply for a Special Hardship Order?

You cannot apply for a Special Hardship Order if within 5 years before your licence became suspended: –

♦your Queensland driver licence had been suspended or cancelled, or you had been disqualified from holding or obtaining a Queensland driver licence.

♦ you had a non-Queensland driver licence that permitted you to drive on Queensland roads that had been suspended.

♦ you were made ineligible to hold a Queensland driver licence because:-

           (i) you accumulated too many demerit points.  

           (ii) you were convicted of driving more than 40 km/hour over the speed limit while you were unlicensed.

♦ you had been convicted of the offence of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle under section 328A Criminal Code (Qld). 

 

What conditions must the Special Hardship Order Include? 

The Special Hardship Order must include the following conditions: –

♦ the purpose for which a motor vehicle may be driven under the licence.

♦ the class of motor vehicle that may be driven under the licence.

♦ the times at which or period of time during which a motor vehicle may be driven under the licence.

♦ that a motor vehicle may be driven under the licence only if the licence holder is carrying a copy of the order.

 

What conditions may the Court include in a Special Hardship Order?

The Court may include conditions like:

♦ the areas where you may drive the motor vehicle.

♦ If you can carry passengers in your motor vehicle.

♦ If you need to keep a logbook of where you travel.

♦ If you must wear a work uniform when driving.

 

How do you apply for a Special Hardship Order?

To make an application for an Special Hardship Order, you must:

1. Complete the approved Special Hardship Order application form. Please remember to include all of the information, or details of the information you rely upon for your application (please see below in relation to providing affidavits and statutory declarations).

2. File your application in the Court.

3. Serve a Court sealed copy of your application and accompanying documentation on the Department of Queensland Transport at least 7 days before your hearing date.

PLEASE NOTE: Once you have served a copy of your application and accompanying documentation on the Department of Queensland Transport your driver licence suspension is lifted until the day before your hearing.

 

What must the Court be satisfied of before making a Special Hardship Order?

Before a Court can make a Special Hardship Order, it must be satisfied that: –

(a) you are a fit and proper person to continue to drive, having regard to your traffic history and the safety of other road users and the public generally; and 

(b) a refusal to make the order would—

(i) cause extreme hardship to you or your family by depriving you of your means of earning a living; or

(ii) cause severe and unusual hardship to you or your family, other than by depriving you of your means of earning a living; and 

when the order is made, you hold an open or provisional licence that would be valid, but for the suspension due to you being convicted of driving more than 40 km/hour over the speed limit or accumulating two or more demerit points while you were subject to a good driving behaviour period.

Affidavit

If the basis for your application is because the suspension would cause extreme hardship to you or your family by depriving you of your means of earning a living then you must provide: –

(1) An affidavit from yourself outlining how the refusal to make the Special Hardship Order would cause extreme hardship to you or your family.

(2) If you are employed, you need to provide an affidavit from your employer confirming you would be deprived of earning an income if the Court refused to make the Special Hardship Order. 

If the basis for your application is because the suspension would cause severe and unusual hardship to you or your family, other than by depriving you of your means of earning a living, then you must provide an affidavit: –

(a) outlining how the refusal to make the order would cause severe and unusual hardship to you or your family; and 

(b) attaching:-

(i) statutory declarations from persons other than yourself in support of each matter stated in your affidavit.

(ii) other documentary evidence, or certified copies of evidence that supports each matter stated in your affidavit.

 

What happens if the Court makes a Special Hardship Order?

 

If a court makes a Special Hardship Order:-

(1) the suspension of your open or provisional licence ends when the order is made; and

(2) while the order applies in relation to you, you are authorised to continue to drive under a Queensland driver licence subject to the restrictions stated in the order.

 

What do you need to do if the Court makes a Special Hardship Order?

 

If the Court makes a Special Hardship Order, then within 14 days of the order being made you must attend the Queensland Department of Transport and apply for a replacement driver licence.

When applying for a replacement driver licence you will need to complete the approved form and attach a copy of the Special Hardship Order.

The replacement driver licence must be for the same type, class or description as the licence that was suspended, and it will include an “X3” code indicating that you are authorised to drive motor vehicles only under a Special Hardship Order.

 

What happens if the Court refuses to make a Special Hardship Order?

If the Court refuses to make a Special Hardship Order, the suspension of your open or provisional licence continues for the remaining period of your driver licence suspension less anytime you had already served before you lodged your application.

 

Can you apply to the Court to have a Special Hardship Order varied?

Yes, however you need to demonstrate to the Court a change in your circumstances (e.g. your place of work has changed).

 

What happens at the end of the period of the Special Hardship Order?

You must return to the Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads to have your driver licence reissued without the Special Hardship Order condition on it.

 

What happens if the Court makes a Special Hardship Order and you do not comply with it?

If you do not comply with any of the conditions of the Special Hardship Order, then you can be fined a maximum of 20 penalty units ($2,523.00).

If you are convicted of not complying with the Special Hardship Order, then the court must disqualify you from holding or obtaining a Queensland driver licence for the following period—

♦ if you are convicted while the Special Hardship Order applies:-

♦ the period between the day of the conviction and the end of the order period; and

♦ 3 months from the end of the order period.

♦ if you are convicted after the Special Hardship Order stops applying to you—3 months from the day of the conviction.

The hearing of the Special Hardship Order Application

You will need to attend Court on the day of your hearing.

If your employer has provided an affidavit, they will need to attend Court with you unless the prosecutor has told you that they do not need them to attend. Likewise, if you have obtained affidavits from anyone else in support of your application then they too will need to attend court unless the prosecutor tells you they are not required.

Each person who has provided an affidavit in support of your application may be called to give evidence and be cross-examined in relation to their evidence. However, this is subject to what the prosecutor advises you.

Please remember, if your witnesses do not attend court and each of their affidavits do not address what the Magistrate wants to know then your matter may be adjourned to another day.

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DRIVER LICENCE

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