A restricted driver’s license with a no-drug or alcohol restriction is commonly referred to in Minnesota as a B-card. This type of license gives a repeat DWI offender the chance to be validly relicensed to drive after cancellation—typically after three DWI violations in a ten-year period or four DWI incidents in a lifetime.
If you are issued a B-card in Minnesota, you can’t be caught drugged driving or consuming any amount of alcohol due to the alcohol restriction placed on your license. Otherwise, you will lose your driving privileges. The primary goal of this restriction is to prevent individuals with multiple DWI convictions from drinking and getting behind the wheel.
Many people are unaware of the fact that a B-card restriction can result in various problems. There are restaurants, for instance, that will not allow individuals to even enter their premises with a B-card—whether or not they were intending to drink while in the establishment. This means that with a restricted driver’s license, you may be unable to enter a particular restaurant to even drink a soda.
Applying for a B-Card Restriction
If your driving privileges have been cancelled, the Department of Public Safety rules indicate that you may apply for a restricted driver’s license, provided that you sign a sworn statement to never consume alcohol or controlled substances again—whether or not you are driving. By agreeing to the condition of a B-card license, you are being informed that your license will be cancelled immediately as soon as you consume any amount of an illegal drug or take a single sip of alcohol.
To get a B-card, you must meet certain requirements, such as completing chemical dependency treatment and rehabilitation, the ignition interlock program, a last use statement, and abstinence for at least a year. All requirements must be satisfied during the cancellation period—generally three years for a first-time cancellation.
Removing Your B-Card Restriction
As of 2011, state law dictates that it is possible to have a B-card restriction removed from your driver’s license if you have demonstrated sobriety for ten years.
You must first obtain and fill out a form to be submitted to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety. State your request to remove the B-card restriction, and then sign to show you are aware that a background check must first be made before the removal of the restriction can be approved.
If the background check shows that you have complied with the sobriety requirements, you will be notified to apply for a duplicate or new driver’s license without the restriction.
If the check reveals that you have violated the B-card restriction at any point, however, then your license will be cancelled. It must be noted though that violation of the B-card restriction is not actually considered a crime unless there is a motor vehicle involved.
Keep in mind that it is important to remove the restriction once eligible to avoid additional penalties and liability.
Cancelling a B-card
Any violation of the abstinence restrictions of a B-card will lead to the immediate cancellation of your driver’s license. A B-card cancellation can also bring about severe consequences, since you must again complete chemical dependency treatment and rehabilitation before becoming validly licensed. The rehabilitation process to obtain a B-card needs documented proof of drug or alcohol abstinence for at least one year for your first rehabilitation, three years for your second rehabilitation, and six years for your third or subsequent rehabilitation.