Q&A Limited Work License in PA

Q & A with info about the Limited Work License.


Q: What is an Occupational Limited License?

A: An Occupational Limited License (OLL) is a limited driver’s license issued to a driver whose Pennsylvania driving privilege has been suspended. If your driving privilege has been revoked, disqualified, canceled or recalled, you are not eligible for an OLL. If you have never been licensed by this or any other state, and you are not a resident of PA, you are also ineligible to apply. An OLL authorizes driving a designated non-commercial motor vehicle, under certain conditions, only when it is necessary for the driver’s occupation, work, trade, medical treatment or study.

(My Comment) – You need to have held a license in Pennsylvania or another state prior to being suspended to qualify for a Limited Work License. If you have never had a driver’s license – you can NOT get a limited Work License / OLL.

Q: What types of violations are NOT eligible for an OLL?

A: Certain violations may make you ineligible depending on previous violations or a conviction date. In most cases, after the suspension time has been fully served for an ineligible violation or the violation has been released, it is no longer a disqualifying violation.

OLL Disqualification Chart Drug ChargeOLL disqualification underage violations

Q: Am I still eligible for an OLL if I have 2 DUI’s that are more than 10 years apart?

A: No, unless you have a second 18-month suspension, the vehicle code does not outline a previous violation time-frame (such as 10 years) for DUI’s when determining OLL eligibility.

(My Comment) This is a big one. A 2nd DUI requires you serve 12 months of suspension before you can apply, no matter how much time has passed for the prior DUI.

Q: According to the chart I’m not eligible to apply until my vehicle is equipped with an Ignition Interlock Device, does having the device installed also count towards my 1-year restoration requirement for the Ignition Interlock device?

A: No. The Ignition Interlock is a separate requirement to obtain an OLL and from satisfying your restoration requirement, you may refer to Section 1553(d.2)(2).


Q: If the listed drug violation was sent court certified from 01/01/04 to 10/27/14 with a conviction date greater than 10 days from the processing date, how do I find the conviction/processing date for the violation?

A: If you’ve pulled a copy of your Driving History the Processing Date can be calculated by looking at the “Official Notice Mailed” date and subtracting 7 days. If you have letters from your suspensions your processing date will be shown in the top right corner of the letter. These violations must have a court certification date from 1/1/04 to 10/27/14. Additional information can be found under the Controlled Substance Act in the PA vehicle code under section 1532(c).

(My Comment) If your drug charge was outside of this “special” exception, you will NOT qualify for a limited license. 

Q: Can a suspended CDL driver get an OLL?

A: Yes, provided all requirements are met, you would be eligible for a non-commercial OLL only.

(My Comment) You can drive for work as long as you do not require a special license (CDL) to operate the vehicle and you are not transporting people like a bus or taxi. I must also clarify that you will not qualify for UBER or Lyft with a limited license.

Q: What are the first things I must do in order to qualify?

A: If your suspension is in effect, you must surrender your driver’s license if you have not done so already. If your driver’s license has expired, you must submit an application for renewal, along with the appropriate fee. All fines, costs, and restoration fees must be paid at the time of petition. Follow the instructions in the petition for further instructions.

Q: How do I apply?

A: In order to apply, you must complete an Occupational Limited License Petition (form DL-15). Then send the form, along with a check or money order, proof of insurance (copies only) and the required Restoration Fee (if not previously paid) by mail to the Department (address listed below.)

(My Comment) You may hire License Restoration Services to assist with your limited license application. They will help ensure you do not get delayed, have completed all necessary steps, and make the entire process much easier.

License Restoration Services


Q: Will I have enough time to apply and receive the OLL prior to my suspension date?

A: If the DL-15 form is received and approved prior to the effective date of your suspension, one of two things will happen:

1) If the effective date of suspension is less than 15 days from the process date, the Department will delay the start of your suspension for 15 days and issue an interim license;

2) If the effective date is greater than 15 days from the process date, the Department will not delay the suspension but will issue an interim license. The interim license provides you with a continuous driving privilege while the surrender of your regular driver’s license is used for the processing of your OLL.

Note: Credit toward your suspension will begin upon the new effective date or after if you delay in submitting your license to the Department.

Q: What is the cost?

A: A fee for applying for an OLL is $65.00 and is non-refundable.

(My Comment) Pay attention to the non-refundable part. They will not give you the money back if you are not eligible or your application is denied.

Q: After I apply, what happens next?

A: Within 20 days of receiving your petition, the Department will inform you in writing whether or not you qualify for an OLL. If you qualify, you will receive an OLL camera card to obtain a photo OLL. You are to carry your photo OLL and DL-15A together at all times.

 (My Comment) Our experience tells us this timeframe is much longer at the current time. If your application has any issues this could get extended by weeks and seriously delay your issue date.

Q: When does my OLL expire?

A: The OLL is valid for the length of your suspension term. After your driving privilege has been restored, the Department will return your valid regular driver’s license.


Q: Can the OLL be extended?

A: Only if you are given a suspension due to the result of a Departmental Hearing or if you were convicted of a point related violation which resulted in an “add on” suspension. The Department will notify you and send you the application to extend your OLL. (DL-80OP)


Q: I’ve bought/sold/changed vehicles, do I need to notify anyone?

A: The Department does not need to be notified of any vehicle changes for the purposes of maintaining a valid OLL but your DL-15A should be updated and kept with your OLL.


Q: What happens if I commit a violation while driving on an OLL or if a violation is placed on your record after receiving the OLL?

A: If you are convicted of an offense for which the penalty is a cancellation, disqualification, recall, suspension, or revocation of your driving privilege, the Department will recall your OLL and you must surrender the OLL to the Department.


Q: Can I get another OLL if I am suspended again?

A: You may be issued only one (1) OLL every five (5) years.

 (My Comment) 5 years from the end of the prior OLL to the eligibility of the new OLL.

Q: Can I take any action in the event that my OLL is recalled or my request is denied?

A: Yes. You may file with the Department a petition for an Administrative Hearing accompanied by a non-refundable processing fee of $100.00. Additional information regarding this filing process will be provided upon request.

“Hardship or extraordinary medical circumstances DO NOT qualify you to receive an OLL.”

(My Comment) This is the most important part of this entire post and needs to be repeated –

Hardship does NOT factor into your limited license application.

You need to apply based on the facts and details in your PennDOT driving record. It will not matter your personal matters, family issues, or how tough your life will be without a Pennsylvania driver’s license. If there are errors on your record, or you do not agree with part of your record, you need to fix those things prior to application. Contact License Restoration Services to get help.

Q: Where do I write to get further information about an OLL or get a petition (Form DL-15)?

A: You may write to: PA Department of Transportation, Bureau of Driver Licensing, OLL/PL Unit, P.O. Box 68689, Harrisburg, PA 17106-8689 or visit the Driver Vehicle Services website at www.dmv.pa.gov

In addition, you can hire License Restoration Services can help for a very reasonable fee. You can call License Restoration Services @ 610-355-9600 or Contact Here

License Restoration Services has been protecting the right of drivers for more than 16 years and has handled thousands of Occupational License petitions with PennDOT. LRS has pushed through all kinds of limited license petitions from the very basic to extremely complex.