State Driving Laws Database

Driver Information By State

Every state regulates driver's license eligibility of persons with certain medical conditions. The most common requirement for people with epilepsy is that they be seizure free for a specific period of time and submit a physician's evaluation of their ability to drive safely. Another common requirement is the periodic submission of medical reports, in some states for a specified period of time and in others for as long as the person remains licensed.

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LawOregon
DMV Appeal of License DenialYes
Doctors to Report EpilepsyYes
Periodic Medical Updates Required After Licensing At discretion of DMV
Seizure-Free Period3 months or longer

Oregon Driver Licensing Laws

In order to obtain a license, an individual who has a mental or physical condition or impairment must demonstrate that the person is qualified to safely operate a motor vehicle to the satisfaction of the Oregon Motor Vehicle Division. A medical determination officer from the Division may require the person to submit a report from his or her physician or to submit to further medical evaluation by a physician selected by the officer. The officer then must supply a determination of eligibility statement that the condition does or does not interfere with his or her ability to drive. The officer must concur in the physician’s recommendation that the licensee or applicant is able to drive safely in order to renew or grant the license. [OR. REV. STAT. § 807.090 (2011)]. To determine licensing of an applicant with epilepsy or loss of consciousness, the Oregon Motor Vehicles Division follows the medical criteria guidelines outlined for the Driver Medical Certification Program. The Program may require that a person reestablish eligibility for licensure at reasonable intervals, determined at the discretion of the medical determination officer. [§ 807.090 (3)]. Restricted licenses are available. [§ 807.120].

In order to appeal a decision to deny or suspend a license for medical reasons, a person must request a hearing before a division hearing officer. The scope of the hearing is to determine if the DMV took appropriate action. No medical information can be provided for Hearing Officer to make a decision. The request must be written and submitted within 20 days of the Division's order. The hearing decision may be appealed to the Court of Appeals. The appeal must be filed within 60 days of the decision. [OR. REV. STAT. § 809.440 (2011)].

Commercial Driving

A person with a mental or physical impairment may obtain a commercial driver’s license if he or she has obtained a medical certificate approved by the Department of Transportation [§ 807.100]. Oregon has adopted the federal regulations regarding the licensing of truck drivers. However, persons with epilepsy and other medical conditions may apply for a waiver. Decisions regarding licensing are made on a case-by-case basis by the State Health Officer. According to Oregon’s DMV, to qualify for a waiver drivers with epilepsy must have remained seizure-free for at least two years while taking anticonvulsants and submit a current evaluation by the treating physician. The evaluation should include: a brief history of clinical findings, a description of current treatment, results of a recent electro-encephalography, anticonvulsant blood levels, a statement concerning the stability of the condition, and, a statement that the person continues to demonstrate good compliance and maintenance of effective anticonvulsant levels. These same requirements apply to drivers of buses and taxis (school bus drivers have additional requirements set out by the state department of education).

Oregon Identification Card

Oregon residents may obtain a non-driver identification card valid for eight (8) years through the Motor Vehicles Division for a $44.50 fee. Applicants must provide proof of age and identity [OR. REV. STAT. § 807.400].

Oregon Reporting

Physicians and health care providers are required to report to the DMV persons age 14 and older with "severe and uncontrollable impairments." An uncontrollable impairment is defined as one that "cannot be controlled by medication, therapy, surgery or adaptive devices." [OR. REV. STAT. § 807.710]. Cognitive and functional impairments are not uncontrollable if they are temporary or can be corrected or compensated for by medication, therapy and surgery or driving device or technique. Physicians and health care providers who make reports in good faith are immune from liability that might otherwise result from making the report. They are also immune from liability if they do not make reports.

© 2014 Epilepsy Foundation. All rights reserved. This summary was developed for informational purposes by the Epilepsy Foundation and reflects a review of data available as of August 2014. Information is subject to change. This summary is not a substitute for legal advice. For further information, please consult your state Department of Motor Vehicles.

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The mission of the Epilepsy Foundation is to lead the fight to overcome the challenges of living with epilepsy and to accelerate therapies to stop seizures, find cures, and save lives.

 
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