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A medical condition can cost you your driving privileges

On Behalf of | Apr 5, 2021 | Traffic Violations

Most people don’t realize it until it happens to them, but you can lose your South Carolina driver’s license if a law enforcement officer believes that a medical condition (mental or physical) may make you unfit to drive. They will leave it to your doctor and ultimately the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to determine whether your license can be reinstated and, if so, whether it will have restrictions.

The DMV may require a driver to undergo a medical evaluation by their physician. The doctor then has to fill out a form regarding that person’s medical condition(s) and any impact those conditions may have on their driving ability before it makes a determination.

Understanding reporting requirements

Medical conditions like epilepsy and diabetes can be especially problematic for some drivers if they’re accompanied by seizures or periods of unconsciousness. Here in South Carolina, unlike some states, doctors are not required to report a patient with these conditions to the DMV.

The DMV expects you to self-report any conditions that could affect your ability to drive safely or that have caused loss of muscle control or consciousness or seizures within the past six months whenever you apply or renew your South Carolina driver’s license. Those who self-report require a medical evaluation before they can get or renew their license.

Understanding your rights

If you’ve lost your license pending a medical evaluation due to an accident or other incident that attracted the attention of law enforcement, it can be harder to get it back than you might realize. That’s when you fully understand that driving is a privilege – one that the DMV can take away.

However, you have rights. If the DMV denies your request to reinstate your driving privileges, you have the right to a hearing to appeal the denial. It’s wise to have an experienced attorney by your side who can help you maneuver the maze of DMV policies and procedures and – more importantly – help you make the strongest possible case for getting your license back.