Driver's license poll

How many people have had their license suspended or revoked as a result of diabetes?

  • Yes
  • No

0 voters

Did you forget to submit paperwork or anything? And, perhaps, what is the most prolonged period it had ever taken them to get reinstated?

Have told my story a few times here already. Lost it for 6 months due to a low while driving right after becoming pregnant. Had to go 3more years with no moving violations. And the catch 22 here, that my doctor and I talked long and hard about. If you report to your doctor you have lost consciousness due to lows, they legally need to report it. So I said, now I wouldn’t report it to her. But they are suppose to be there to help us with issues but if you can’t report them, how do you get help. This was about 25 years ago, so i’m not sure if things have changed here in CA but such a stupid policy. When you really need the help, you can’t ask for it.
All this being said, I did have a great relationship with my doctor and she saw how hard I was trying and I think,that helps with these “legal” things.

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This reality is unfortunate in that it undermines an important source of our support. I suppose you could tell the doctor about a “close friend” who experienced passing out from a low. What would the doctor advise so that you could tell your friend?

This seems silly but the doctor needs to live within our legal system, too.

I will not report any loss of consciousness to my doctor for many reasons. It’s a rare event and I don’t want to deal with their over-reaction to this. I can quietly draw appropriate lessons from any such incident and implement effective counter-measures. Living with diabetes is not simple!

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I didn’t even get my license until I was 22 because they suspended one I didn’t have yet when I was 16, and it created such a mess that I couldn’t work out.

I was living in Cleveland, OH at the time. At 16 I applied for my driver’s permit and got the bad news that it came with a medical restrictions card since I was diabétic. I had to have my doctor submit paperwork every three months. Except, my parents wouldn’t take me to practice, so my permit expired before I was able to take the test. Stopped submitting medical restrictions card paperwork, because no permit/no licence. Then I got a letter in the mail saying that my non-existent license had been suspended, and to mail my non-existent license in to them. Like any other confused teenager, I threw the letter in the trash.

Fast forward a few months and I want to sign up for driver’s ed… In Cleveland the DMVs are big enough to exist in three different buildings. So I wait in line at the main one, who says that’s not my job and sends me to a different department in a different building, I get the same response in that line and they send me to a third department in a third building, and of course after waiting in this third line they also say “not my problem, go back to the first building.”. Literally, nobody could or would help me straighten this out. I just never bothered learning to drive till after college.

I went to college in a very remote area. The DMV there was literally just one single lady sitting at a desk. There was nobody for her to punt me off to. She told me, “honey, this might take a while, but I’ll figure it out.”. Two weeks later, I finally got another permit without the medical restrictions card, so I could get my license.


Yeah, I remember my conversation with my doctor. I said if i’m Having problems with lows and need some advice I can’t ask because I don’t want either of us in a bad situation. And she said yes, it is a horrible regulation. But that being said, her and I worked it out. I never said o lost consciousness but was noticing a few more lows than I would like. It became a game of wording. A horrible system at the time. Not sure if this is still the way things are handled. With my CGM, it hasn’t been an issue for me.

From my knowledge we don’t have such strict rules around this in Australia.

You do need a medical certificate from your doctor, but in my experience it’s usually pretty relaxed. They outline what you’re meant to do (test before driving, can’t drive if you’re below 5.0 mmol/ml) and then the doctor sets a review period, which I believe is up to the discretion of the practitioner.

My biggest issue with this is the limit of 5.0 mmoll/ml. I will regularly be below that, but not in hypoglycaemia, which at this stage is technically not legal for me to drive. I rarely want to correct if my blood sugar was 4.5 and I hadn’t eaten or given any insulin for some hours.


As a Queenslander, I too detest this rule, Donman. Only yesterday I had a doctor’s appointment and woke up with my BGL a little higher then usual. I substituted Xylitol as my sweetener for my coffee but spent too long at the computer.
I knew my BGL would be below 3 mmol/L so I did not test, as I had to drive to the appointment. I quickly ate my Weet-Bix which always spikes my BGL, had a shower then tested, 4.6 mmol/L. Half an hour later at the appointment, the reading was 8.4mmol/L.

So if I am to drive and have recently tested with a test above 5 mmol/L, I will not retest as I get in the car.

Although I have not yet had T 1 for over 10 years, I have never been in a coma or never not been able to self treat a bad hypo. A persons individual history should also be taken into account when these rules are made.


I wonder what responsibility the doctor has with downloaded meter or CGMS data that show BGs below 60? With more downloadable data accessible to medical teams, could DMV require access to it ?

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I definitely agree patient’s individual history needs to be taken into account. Unfortunately, my feeling is that the trend in Medicine more broadly seems to have fallen into using generic guidelines and blindly applying these to all patients.

I appreciate the importance of guidelines when you’re talking about public health, and I think broadly they are beneficial, but the problem arises when there is minimal room to work around these guidelines. I’d say that is more of a bureaucratic problem though than a problem with individual doctors. I dare say people creating these policies often have little understanding of what’s actually going on at the coalface. But then again, that’s a problem across the board with Government policy, in my opinion at least. (sorry, getting a little side tracked here…)

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I find this whole process silly. When I lived in Utah, my doctor had to fill out a form every year saying that I was fit to drive. This was usually based on my A1c alone…

Sending it in every year was annoying. I forgot one year, and I received a letter from the DMV that they were going to revoke my license. I called them, and they said they would be willing to postpone the revocation as long as I sent them the form within a certain so many days. I sent the form as requested, but the whole process seemed like more of an annoyance than any sort of valuable check.

In Virginia, I didn’t have to send anything to the DMV at all. If someone reports you for driving unsafely, then the DMV there can revoke your license, but that’s the only way you lose your license due to diabetes.

I now need to switch my license to DC, and I’ve read that they have the stupid yearly requirement here. I’ve put off switching over my license, but I’m not sure if my Virginia license is technically valid anymore since I haven’t lived there in awhile.

The whole process is silly. I don’t feel like they’re really capable of verifying anything unless you’re being admitted to the hospital due to very low blood sugar levels. Even then, there’d be an incentive to not share those incidences with your doctor in case they revoke your license. What’s the point?

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I used to live in Kentucky.

There, it is not possible to get a commercial drivers license (CDL) that allows out-of-state travel if you have diabetes. I didn’t try to get a CDL so it didn’t directly impact me, but I lived 10 minutes from the Tennessee state line; that would’ve been a horrible problem if driving was my business.

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I have my CDL class A license. I kept my license, but I cannot get a DOT physical without a lot of other paperwork. I need to have a letter from my Endo, and from a different kind of eye doctor before they will submit for me to get an INTRAstate only restriction (only drive in the state of Washington.) I could then submit for an intrastate waiver, but that takes around 6 months to process, and I guess very few get this?
I have NO desire to be a trucker again. BUT I own my own semi-trucks, and would like to legally drive out of state.


1 month until reinstatement. But, that was because the DMV wa revamping the computer system.

Wow, what a scary thought, right?! Privacy issues are a big thing for me and many of us. Just being on a computer can be a scary thing. Who knows what someone might know about you.
My run in with the DMV was a long time ago so I don’t know if things have changed but I have always felt any low I can handle myself is something no one really needs to know about. And with a CGM, there is really no reason to lose consciousness with the alarms. And for me, I still test most times when I drive, but with CGM’s getting more and more accurate, just glancing at it, keeps me safe behind the wheel.

License: When the government takes away your right to do something then sells it back to you as a “privilege”

“An article in Epilepsy Currently found several studies indicated that approximately half of all drivers do not report their epilepsy to regulators as required. More permissive restrictions, such as shorter seizure-free intervals, while potentially increasing the risk of a seizure-related crash, may actually reduce the cumulative crash risk by empowering epileptics to seek help.”

I know about this because a non epileptic buddy of mine had a seizure in the hospital after the doctors screwed him up with psych meds, even though the doctors screwed him up in the first place they ratted him out to DMV. I researched trying to help him.

“A Texas teenager is raising awareness about mental illness this week as she speaks out about her recent experience at the DMV — in which her application for a driver’s license was initially halted when she disclosed her diagnosis of depression.”

I call them “the department of motorist extortion” I had my own problems with them and ever since view them the same way as the ticks I find on the dog, parasites.

Last time at DMV the wait was 6 hours and those vile creatures working there went so slow it was like a movie with a malfunctioning time machine, slow motion. I have had 8 different jobs in my life if I ever went that slow I would have been fired in an hour.

Anyway check that sugar before driving, DMV would like nothing better then more an excuse to use diabetics as cash cows in the name of road safety.

Thankyou for this thread and warning me, I am recently diagnosed.

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@earthingcat, If hes not an epileptic, i would think your friend is OK. Since, in general, you gotta have more than one seizure to be considered epileptic. A huge proportion of the population will have a seizure in their lifetime, especially in the hospital, and they are in no way considered to have epilepsy. DMV generally only concerned with epileptics.

I’ve never had hospital staff report me to the DMV for a seizure. That seems super unusual. Generally, its the cops who will report for a driving related episode. I think that a fuzzy area because stuff that happens at the hospital is supposed to be protected. They aren’t even allowed to report intoxication after arrival at the hospital. Cops get that information before arrival at the hospital or not at all. Sounds goofy and unorthodox.