Montana Department of Justice
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Montana law establishes certain conditions under which a driver’s license or driving privilege is withdrawn from someone who violates traffic laws or who is otherwise not entitled to use our highways. It is important that people understand and inform themselves of the responsibilities of having a license. Under Montana Code Annotated (MCA) 61-5-2, 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When a driver’s license is suspended, the privilege to drive a motor vehicle upon public highways is withdrawn for a specified period.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 Suspension Number of Convictions, Refusals or Violations Period of Suspension
Driving under the influence (DUI) or operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or greater first conviction 6-month suspension
second or subsequent conviction within 5 years 1-year suspension
Refusal to submit to alcohol testing (implied consent or preliminary alcohol screening test) first refusal 6-month suspension
second or subsequent refusal 1-year suspension
Operation of a vehicle by a person under 21 years of age with a BAC of 0.02% or more first conviction 90-day suspension
second conviction 6-month suspension
third conviction 1-year suspension
Commercial driver operating a commercial motor vehicle with a BAC of 0.04% or more first violation 1-year suspension
first violation, if transporting hazardous materials requiring a placard 3-year suspension
second or subsequent violation Suspension for life (reinstatement may be reconsidered after 10 years)
Non-payment of fines or non-appearance on a notice to appear n/a Indefinite suspension until all conditions of court sentence are met
Failure to pay child support n/a Indefinite suspension until child support obligations are met
Unsatisfied judgment n/a 6-year suspension
Driver medically unable to safely operate a motor vehicle n/a Indefinite 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: MCA 44-4-1205
  • 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: 1-877-777-5020

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

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

#1 A LifeSafer of Montana – LifeSafer
1660 Jasper Street, Unit I
Aurora, CO 80011
Phone: 1-888-855-0630

Clean Start of Montana, LLC
P.O. Box 1332
Bozeman, MT 59771
Phone: 1-406-223-5995
Toll Free: 1-800-820-4637

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 MCA 45-5-624, 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.

Conviction Period of Revocation
Negligent homicide resulting from the operation of a motor vehicle 1 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 another 1 year
Perjury or the making of false affidavit or statement under oath relating to the ownership or operation of motor vehicles 1 year
Negligent vehicular assault involving a motor vehicle 1 year
Habitual traffic offender accumulating 30 or more conviction points within a three-year period 3 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

If you have questions or need additional information, please call 406-444-3289.


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

  • Make your payment over the phone with a Visa, MasterCard, or Discover Card at (406) 444-3933.
  • Send your 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). Credit cards can be accepted by phone.
  • Include your driver license number (if known) and full name and date of birth with your payment.

Attorney General's Office & Legal Services Division

The Attorney General’s Office, headed by Attorney General Tim Fox, and the Legal Services Division function as the lawyers for the State of Montana. The attorneys in the Office have expertise in a wide range of legal topics and handle a broad range of legal cases involving the State of Montana and its people.


Children’s Justice Bureau

The Children’s Justice Bureau is an agency-wide initiative at the Montana Department of Justice dedicated to IMPROVING how we respond to child victims, DEVELOPING state-of-the-art approaches by keeping up with the newest research and, most importantly, HELPING child victims recover and move on with their lives.


Forensic Science Division & State Crime Lab

The mission of the Montana Forensic Science Division is to use operationally efficient and financially responsible practices as the laboratory provides accurate, objective, and timely forensic analyses to the criminal justice community in order to maximize value to the citizens of Montana.


Missing Persons Clearinghouse

The Missing Children Act of 1985 established a Montana Missing Persons Clearinghouse within the Department of Justice. In March 2008, the department implemented a searchable online database that, for the first time, is updated in real time and includes any photos provided by law enforcement.


Office of Victim Services

The goal of the Office of Victim Services is to provide tools and information to help crime victims recover from their experience and provide them with a range of services available. The criminal justice system can be confusing and intimidating for victims. To assist them as they go through the justice system, the Office of Victim Service is available to answer any questions they may have.


Central Services Division

The Montana Department of Justice’s Central Services Division provides financial and human resources support for the department. We make sure that everything works for the people Working for Justice. If you’re interested in a rewarding career helping protect the rights and safety of all Montanans, we invite you to join our team of over 800 dedicated employees working across the state.


Justice Information Technology Services Division

Our Justice Information Technology Services Division (JITSD) provides vital Information Technology (IT) infrastructure upon which Montanans and local and state law enforcement agencies rely for timely, accurate information. JITSD manages the IT systems, services, and interfaces to support nearly 800 DOJ employees, 325 statewide county motor vehicle system users, and over 3,000 Criminal Justice Information Network (CJIN) users across the state.


Division of Criminal Investigation

The Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) at the Montana Department of Justice is involved in many aspects of Montana law enforcement and is integral to the Department of Justice’s mission of promoting public safety.


Montana Highway Patrol

Montana is rich in natural beauty and history. From Glacier Park in the west to Makoshika Park in the east, the men and women of the Montana Highway Patrol are working hard to make your travels safe and enjoyable. The Highway Patrol’s core values are “Service, Integrity and Respect.” These values are reflected in our commitment to public safety through diligent and fair enforcement of our traffic codes.


Montana Law Enforcement Academy

The Montana Law Enforcement Academy is the premier law enforcement and public safety educational and training institution for state, county, city and tribal officers throughout the state. The Academy offers entry-level programs referred to as Basic Programs and advanced training through an array of Professional Development Programs.


Public Safety Officer Standards & Training

The Council was formed in 2007 under 2-15-2029, MCA as an independent Quasi-judicial board. And as allowed by statute the Council adopted Administrative Rules in order to implement the provisions of Title 44, chapter 4, part 4, MCA. Per 44-4-403, MCA the Council is required to set employment and training standards for all Public Safety Officers as defined in 44-4-401, MCA and in addition the Council shall provide for the certification or recertification of public safety officers and for the suspension or revocation of certification of public safety officers.


Motor Vehicle Division

The mission of the Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) is to identify and promote efficient, cost-effective programs that benefit the interests, safety, and well-being of Montana citizens through licensing, registering, and regulating the motoring activities of the public. The MVD continuously strives for excellence in customer service. Streamlining the way we do business has allowed us to improve our efficiency and make our services more convenient for our customers.


Natural Resource Damage Program

The Natural Resource Damage Program (NRDP) was created in 1990 to prepare the state’s lawsuit against the Atlantic Richfield Co. (ARCO) for injuries to the natural resources in the Upper Clark Fork River Basin (UCFRB). Decades of mining and mineral processing operations in and around Butte and Anaconda released substantial quantities of hazardous substances into the Upper Clark Fork River Basin between Butte and Milltown. These hazardous substances extensively degraded the area’s natural resources.


Office of Consumer Protection

Enforce consumer laws designed to protect the consumer from unfair or deceptive business practices. Enforce statutes relating to telephone solicitation and telemarketing. Provide information to consumers about the Consumer Protection Act. Assist consumers by distributing consumer education materials including scam and consumer alerts. Investigate false, misleading, or deceptive trade practices.


Gambling Control Division

Through the Gambling Control Division, the Department of Justice regulates all forms of gambling in Montana, except for the Montana Lottery and horse racing. The legislature has charged the division with maintaining a uniform regulatory climate that is fair and free of corrupt influences. The division is also responsible for collecting gambling revenue for state and local governments.


Human Trafficking

The Montana Department of Justice has a continued commitment to victims of human trafficking. In partnership with federal authorities, our agency plays a key role in the investigation, enforcement, and prosecution of crimes related to human trafficking in Montana. This form of modern day slavery does happen here in Big Sky Country.


Prescription Drug Abuse Awareness Program

Montana’s deadliest drugs aren’t made in secret labs and they don’t always come from dealers on the corner. They’re in our own medicine cabinets. Each year, prescription drug abuse contributes to the deaths of more than 300 Montanans — making prescription drug abuse 15 times more deadly than meth, heroin and cocaine combined. Our kids report the third-highest rate of prescription drug abuse in the country and more than half of them say prescription drugs are easier to get than street drugs.


Safe in Your Space

When it comes to embracing new technology, kids have rapidly outpaced their parents and teachers. By their early school years, many children are already more comfortable on the Internet than their parents. But just because children are smart enough to know how to navigate the Internet, doesn’t mean they have the experience to make good decisions about some of the possibilities they may face online.


Montana Sexual or Violent Offender Registry

Created by the Montana Department of Justice in 1989, the Sexual or Violent Offender Registry is a valuable resource for Montanans to protect their families against sexual or violent offenders.


Montana 24/7 Sobriety Program

Drinking and driving has been a chronic – and deadly — problem on Montana’s roadways for decades. In 2008, Montana was ranked as the deadliest state in the nation when it came to per capita DUI-related traffic fatalities.


Work for Justice

Everyday at The Montana Department of Justice, our employees are dedicated to ensuring the well-being and rights of the people of our great state. We’re passionate about what we do because it’s more than a job or a career. It’s about who we are as people. If this sounds like you, your unique experiences, knowledge, and values may be just what the Montana Department of Justice is looking for and needs. In return we can offer a culture that promotes fairness and growth opportunities.