Maryland Provisional Driver's License

 A provisional drivers license in Maryland is part of the graduated licensing system.  A provisional drivers license is granted to a new driver when he gets his license until he turns age 18 typically. This license is provisional and has certain restrictions upon it to make sure that the driver is safe and does not hurt other members of the motoring public. An example of a restriction would be that they have to be home by 12 o'clock at night. Also a provisional license holder is only entitled to one probation before judgment while they are in possession of a provisional license. This is actually quite important because if such a driver were to get a speeding take it early in their career and then subsequently got a DUI which would have otherwise resulted in a probation before judgment this driver can be denied a PBJ for the DUI because they already received a probationary disposition on the speeding ticket.

This is a very scary result for young drivers because getting a conviction for a DUI so young in one's career is a very bad idea. This office has gone to great lengths in this circumstance to attempts to strike the probation before judgment on the speeding ticket in order that the licensee could obtain a probation before judgment for the far more serious ticket of DUI. Of course this cannot be done in all cases but if the two are relatively close in time it may be possible as a option to attempt to keep the record clear of a DUI conviction.

Additionally, if a provisional license holder incurs tickets that result in probation before judgment or otherwise, the timeframe for which they must possess a provisional license can be extended by the MVA. In other words, a provisional license holder must be able to go a certain period of time without incurring any tickets in order to graduate from the provisional license to a regular license. It is possible to continue to have this timeframe extended several times in the event of a bad driver. And as stated above if the driver were to incur a serious motor violation and a probation before judgment was not available as a legal sentence in the case, this could have serious ramifications for that driver.

If a minor has a provisional drivers license they are of course limited to driving a car during certain times of the day as indicated above. A violation of this rule could contribute to yet another ticket so it is important for said licensee to know where he is and when he must be home.  If a young driver is pulled over and the police see that the licensee is on a provisional drivers license he may go out of his way to write additional tickets in an attempt to teach the licensee a lesson. This of course is unfortunate for the driver for the reasons stated above. So a provisional license holder is reminded to stick by the rules of the provisional license, to drive carefully and to stay away from any alcohol or impairing substances. 
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