In this section
START OF Cars and driving
START OF Drink driving and drug driving
END OF Drink driving and drug driving
END OF Cars and driving
If you are pleading guilty to any sort of charge of drug driving you will lose your licence. You may be able to apply for a work licence. There is no other special licence that you can get no matter how much you need a licence or how good your reasons are (eg for taking children to school; taking mother for cancer treatment). Because it’s not for work, there is no power for the court to give you a licence.
It depends. There are different types of ‘drug driving offences’. You may be charged with driving or being in charge of a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or you may be charged with driving or being in charge of a vehicle with cannabis, ecstasy or ICE in your saliva or blood (but not under the influence).
If the charge is driving or being in charge of a vehicle while under the influence of drugs, you cannot get a work licence or any sort of order which lets you drive.You will be disqualified from holding or obtaining a licence for a period. During this period and afterwards until you get a licence, if you drive you are breaking the law.
If you are charged with driving or being in charge of a vehicle with cannabis, ecstasy or ICE in your saliva or blood (but not with driving or being in charge or a vehicle while under the influence of drugs, which is a more serious charge), then you may be able to get a work licence. See the next question for more information.
No, although there is a similar process. If you drive after using drugs, you may test positive to drugs in your system. If you are charged with driving or being in charge of a vehicle with cannabis, ecstasy or ICE in your saliva or blood (but not with driving or being in charge or a vehicle while under the influence of drugs, which is a more serious charge), then you may be able to get a work licence. Always ask a lawyer about the charge before you go to court.
As with drink driving, you will need to apply in writing to the court and it will decide whether you get one or not. And to be entitled to apply for a work licence at all, you must be able to say "yes" to all of the things below:
Even if you can say "yes" that all of these things apply to you, to get a work licence:
If you have questions about a work licence, ask a lawyer for legal advice. Legal Aid Queensland has a free guide, Are you going to lose your driver licence? to help you apply for a work licence or special hardship order.
You may need legal advice if you
Important: before seeking legal advice you must have a copy of your traffic history to show the lawyer - this is available from a Department of Transport and Main Roads Customer Service Centre by filling in a form and paying a fee. You should also apply for your QP9 before seeing a lawyer - contact your local police/police prosecutions office to find out how.
Legal Aid Queensland may provide legal advice about drug driving.
Our Traffic Clinic provides specialist legal advice on complex matters, including contesting a drug driving charge.
The services below may also provide legal advice on your matter.
Community legal centres may provide preliminary legal advice on drug driving - check with individual CLCs whether they will advise on your matter.
Queensland Law Society can refer you to a specialist private solicitor for advice or representation.
The following organisations may also be able to help you. They do not provide legal advice.
Queensland Traffic Offenders Program (QTOP) is an educational court diversion program for first and second time offenders who want to plead guilty to a traffic offence, including drink driving, unsafe driving, disqualified driving, suspended licence, appealing licence disqualifications (fees apply for this service).
Department of Transport and Main Roads deals with complaints and enquiries concerning drivers licence, registration, traffic fines, etc.
Last updated 26 May 2021