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  • Montana law establishes certain conditions under which a driver’s license or driving privilege is withdrawn for violating traffic laws.
  • A driver’s license or driving privilege can also be withdrawn from someone if they are not otherwise entitled to use our highways.
  • It is important that people understand and inform themselves of the responsibilities of having a license.
  • Under § 61-5-2, MCA a driver’s license may be suspended, revoked, or cancelled.

Driver License Suspension

When a driver’s license is suspended, the privilege to drive a motor vehicle upon public highways is withdrawn for a specified period.

Basis for SuspensionNumber of Convictions, Refusals or ViolationsPeriod of Suspension
Driving under the influence (DUI) or operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or greaterfirst conviction6-month suspension
second or subsequent conviction within 10 years1-year suspension
Refusal to submit to alcohol testing (implied consent or preliminary alcohol screening test)first refusal6-month suspension
second or subsequent refusal1-year suspension
Operation of a vehicle by a person under 21 years of age with a BAC of 0.02% or morefirst conviction90-day suspension
second conviction6-month suspension
third conviction1-year suspension
Commercial driver operating a commercial motor vehicle with a BAC of 0.04% or morefirst violation1-year suspension
first violation, if transporting hazardous materials requiring a placard3-year suspension
second or subsequent violationSuspension for life (reinstatement may be reconsidered after 10 years)
Non-payment of fines or non-appearance on a notice to appearn/aIndefinite suspension until all conditions of court sentence are met
Failure to pay child supportn/aIndefinite suspension until child support obligations are met
Unsatisfied judgmentn/a6-year suspension
Driver medically unable to safely operate a motor vehiclen/aIndefinite unless the medical condition changes

There are other penalties after conviction for alcohol-related driving offenses:

  • In the 24/7 Sobriety Program, drivers charged or convicted of a second or subsequent DUI offense can be ordered to undergo twice-daily breath tests or to wear a bracelet that monitors alcohol in their bodies.
  • Authority of court to order participation in a sobriety program: § 44-4-1205, MCA
  • Additional impaired driving information can be found through the Montana Department of Transportation.

Ignition Interlock Vendors

A driver who has been convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) or with an alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more may be restricted to operating a vehicle that is equipped with an ignition interlock device. The following companies are approved interlock vendors:

10520 Hickman Road, Suite F
Des Moines, IA 50325
Phone: 1-833-210-8427

Smart Start, Inc.
4850 Plaza Drive
Irving, TX 75063-2317
Phone: 1-800-880-3394

#1 A LifeSafer of Montana–LifeSafer
3630 Park 42 Drive, Suite 140C
Cincinnati, OH 45241
Phone: 1-888-855-0630

Clean Start of Montana, LLC
P.O. Box 1332
Bozeman, MT 59771
Phone: 1-406-589-5463
Toll Free: 1-800-820-4637

Parent Companies:

DMB Interlock & Safety Services, Inc.
1302 Ave D
Billings, MT 59101
Phone: 1-406-698-7297
Fax: 1-406-839-9214

Draeger, Inc.
1221 S. Beltline Road, #700
Coppell, TX 75019

Other Violations

For the following violations, Montana law and other established rules, regulations and standards mandate that a driver’s license is suspended for varied periods lasting from 30 days to one year (or in some cases, indefinitely). These violations include, but are not limited to:

  • drivers convicted of three reckless driving offenses committed within a period of 12 months
  • drivers who use a motor vehicle in the theft of motor vehicle fuel
  • failure to obtain required medical evaluation or submit to testing
  • fraudulent application for a license to drive
  • falsifying a date of birth on a driver’s license application
  • altering a driver’s license or identification card to obtain alcohol
  • authorizing another person to use your license or identification card to obtain alcohol
  • any unlawful use of a driver license

Minor in Possession of Alcohol (MIP)

Under § 45-5-624, MCA MIP convictions are not recorded on an individual’s Montana driving record. However, a driver license suspension resulting from an MIP conviction is permanently recorded on the offender’s driving record.

Confiscation – A driver license confiscation is not the same as a suspension. Confiscation is between the violator and the court. If a person with a driver’s license is convicted of an MIP violation, the court must confiscate the license:

  • first MIP offense – 30-day confiscation
  • second or subsequent MIP offense – 6-month confiscation

A violator who drives during a period of driver license confiscation may be charged with driving without a license. A violator may also be subject to additional sentencing provisions imposed by the court.

Suspension for failure to complete substance abuse course – Under Montana’s MIP law, violators who fail to complete a community-based substance abuse course may have their driver’s licenses suspended:

  • first failure to complete substance abuse course – 3-month suspension
  • second failure – 9-month suspension
  • third or subsequent failure – 12-month suspension

Driver License Revocation

When a license is revoked, it is terminated for a specific reason and may not be renewed or restored. When the period of revocation expires and the individual meets all of the requirements to be licensed, that person must then apply for a new license, completing applications, paying all fees and taking all applicable knowledge and skills tests.

ConvictionPeriod of Revocation
Negligent homicide resulting from the operation of a motor vehicle1 year
Any felony in the commission of which a motor vehicle is used (including 4th offense DUI/BAC violations)1 year
Failure to stop and render aid as required in the event of a motor vehicle accident resulting in the death or personal injury of another1 year
Perjury or the making of false affidavit or statement under oath relating to the ownership or operation of motor vehicles1 year
Negligent vehicular assault involving a motor vehicle1 year
Habitual traffic offender accumulating 30 or more conviction points within a three-year period3 years

Registration Reinstatement

To reinstate registration after a second or subsequent conviction for no insurance:

  • Follow any instructions that the judge or court gave
  • Provide proof of liability insurance to the Motor Vehicle Division Records and Driver Control Unit in Helena
    • Fax:
    • Mailing address:
      P.O. Box 201430
      Helena MT  59620-1430
  • Purchase restricted registration and plates at your local County Treasurer’s office
  • When your suspension period is complete in 90 or 180 days, return to your local county treasurer’s office to have a new registration printed that removes the restriction

If you have questions or need additional information, please call 406-444-3933.


When a license is cancelled, it is terminated because a person is no longer entitled to it. However, upon meeting certain requirements, a person whose license has been cancelled may reapply for another license. Examples of cancellation include:

  • the death of the person signing a minor’s application
  • fraud and/or falsifying information on an application for a license to drive
  • paying for a driver’s license service with a non-sufficient funds check
  • removal of parental consent
  • voluntary surrender of a license
  • a license is suspended or revoked in another state

Instructions for Paying a Reinstatement Fee

  • If you have a Montana driver license, you are eligible to pay your reinstatement fees using our online services.
  • If you are unable to pay online, you can send the payment (check or money order) to:
    Motor Vehicle Division
    Records and Driver Control Bureau
    P.O. Box 201430
    Helena MT 59620-1430
  • Make the check or money order payable to the Motor Vehicle Division (U.S. funds only). 
  • Include your driver license number (if known) and full name and date of birth with your payment.