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.

Select the state you want to find information about, or if you are moving and would like to compare two states' driving laws side by side? Choose the two states below to compare.

LawVirginia
DMV Appeal of License DenialYes
Doctors to Report EpilepsyNo
Periodic Medical Updates Required After Licensing At discretion of Medical Advisory Board
Seizure-Free Period6 months with exceptions

Virginia Driver Licensing Laws

Virginia's Department of Motor Vehicles will not issue a license to a person with a physical or mental disability, which, in the opinion of the Department, will prevent them from exercising reasonable and ordinary control over a motor vehicle. VA. CODE ANN. § 46.2-315 (2020). The Department may, upon reasonable belief that a person is medically incapable of safely operating a motor vehicle, require that the person submit to medical examinations; failure to comply is a ground for suspension or denial of one’s license. VA. CODE ANN. § 46.2-322 (2020). Medical information submitted to the DMV is evaluated by Medical Advisory Board. VA. CODE ANN. § 46.2-204 (2020). The Medical Advisory Board of the Department of Motor Vehicles medical policy for DMV regarding seizures or blackouts states that an individual must be seizure-free or black-out-free for at least six months to regain proper medical control before driving. An individual with a history of blackouts must submit a medical report completed by the individual and their physician prior to being issued a driver's license. The information is then reviewed to determine if the individual may be licensed, with or without restrictions, to drive a motor vehicle. While the Department's current seizure-free policy requires individuals to be seizure-free for six months, each case is reviewed individually.

Based on the evaluation, the Department may (1) suspend driving privileges; (2) restrict driving privileges; or (3) require the driver to submit periodic medical and/or vision reports. These may be required every three, six, twelve or twenty-four months. Other restrictions may be imposed, as appropriate. COMMONWEALTH OF VA., DMV, MEDICAL FITNESS FOR SAFE DRIVING (2020). Persons who have had their licenses denied or suspended for medical reasons may have their cases reviewed by the Medical Advisory Board. If not satisfied with the decision, an individual may appeal the decision to a circuit court. The appeal must be filed within thirty days of the date of the decision. VA. CODE ANN. § 46.1-437 (2020). This decision may be appealed to the Supreme Court of Appeals of Virginia.

Commercial Driving

Virginia has adopted the federal Department of Transportation's medical standard for granting commercial drivers licenses. Waivers are not available for individuals with epilepsy. VA. CODE ANN. § 46.2-341.5 (2020).

Virginia Identification Card

Any resident of Virginia who does not have a valid driver's license may apply to the DMV for a photo identification card. The individual must present two proofs of identity such as a birth certificate and other official document that has the individual's name and date of birth. The card is valid for five years and there is a nominal fee.

Virginia Reporting

There is no provision requiring physicians to report patients who have been treated for or diagnosed as having epilepsy to a central state agency. A physician who provides medical information about a patient does not have statutory immunity from liability for damages arising out of an accident caused by a seizure. VA. MOTOR VEHICLE CODE § 46.2-322 (2020).

 

© 2020 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 2020. 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.

Our Mission

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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