Folks who get their drivers licenses suspended for DUI arrests in South Carolina have options to get back on the road. None of these options is perfect, but we’re convinced the best is contesting the suspension. Other options are ignition interlock—which is both embarrassing and annoying—or the option we discuss here: a route restricted license.

Sure, a route restricted license is cheaper than ignition interlock. And some think it makes you look like a “nice guy” who’s sorry for what he’s done, so maybe the officer will cut you a break on the DUI. I’d sooner invest in oceanfront property in Kansas. Let’s discuss the basics of route restricted licenses.

Features of Route Restricted Licenses in South Carolina

Here’s why you don’t want a route restricted license unless you have no choice:

  • It’s restricted, just like it says on the label. You can only drive to and from work (including work-related trips), school, and the alcohol drug safety action program you complete to get your regular license back. That’s it. Nowhere else.
  • Big Brother is watching you. How will anyone know your route, you ask? Because you are required to list these places on the application, so it’s in writing and filed with the DMV. If any routes change, you have to go back to the DMV to report it. So if you get a new job or a new sales territory, the DMV is the second to know.
  • It’s costly. To get it, you’ve got to enroll in an alcohol drug safety action program (ADSAP), which costs anywhere between $500 to $2,500.
  • Driving outside the restrictions is a separate criminal offense. If caught outside the territory allowed by the DMV, you face driving under suspension charges. That includes jail, fines, and a mandatory longer drivers license suspension. Yes, it’s a real nightmare.

There’s a Better Way, Avoid a Restricted License 

As mentioned above, the best way to not worry about a route restricted license or ignition interlock is to contest the suspension. Why face these heavy requirements without a fight?

To have a fighting chance against a contested case hearing, you’ll need an experienced DUI/DUAC defense lawyer who knows the complex law and about the little technicalities that can make all the difference in your case. If you want to know more about your case, check out the other articles on our site and download our free report about these DUI and DUAC cases. Better yet, call us at (888) 230-1841 for a FREE, no-obligation meeting to discuss building your defense.


Rob Usry
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Rob is a Spartanburg personal injury lawyer. Rob also practices as a workers' compensation attorney.
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