Get a limited licence

If you’ve been disqualified from driving, or have received too many demerit points and lost your driver’s licence, you may be able to apply for a limited licence.

A limited licence can be granted under certain circumstances and it means you can only drive for specific reasons at specified times.

You have to apply to the court for an Order that authorises you to get a limited licence through the NZ Transport Agency.

In your application you need to prove to the court that not being able to drive causes extreme hardship to yourself (not just inconvenience) or undue hardship to someone else (such as an employer or dependants).

If the Order is granted by the court - you then need to apply to the Transport Agency for your licence and pay their application fee.

The court could deny your application or the Transport Agency may not issue the licence, any fees paid won’t be refunded.

Applying to the court for a limited licence can be complex. Your application needs to be in a certain format with specific information, but there’s no application form to use.

You can seek legal advice or free community legal help

More information on this process is available from:

Citizens Advice Bureau website(external link)

Community Law factsheet(external link)

NZ Transport Agency limited licence factsheet(external link)

If you’ve been disqualified from driving in court

You generally have a stand-down period of 28 days once you’ve been disqualified. You can still make your application to the court during this time but the stand-down period will still apply.

It costs $150 to apply to the court for a limited licence. Your application should be filed at the court you were disqualified in. 

However, there are certain situations where you cannot apply for a limited licence if you have been disqualified. These include, but are not limited to:

  • you have been disqualified from holding or obtaining a driver licence due to repeat offending involving alcohol or drugs or are required to use an alcohol interlock device
  • you are disqualified for driving while disqualified or suspended, or driving contrary to the conditions of a limited licence
  • you have been disqualified for dangerous driving, failing to stop after an accident, or careless or inconsiderate driving causing injury or death
  • have a Driver Licence Stop Order(external link) in effect.

If you lost your licence due to demerit points

If you have been suspended from driving for too many demerit points there is no stand-down period before applying for a limited licence.

It costs $200 to apply to the court for a limited licence. You can file your application at your local District Court.

If the order is granted you will need to pay an additional $50 sealing fee to the court before you approach the Transport Agency.

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