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Wisconsin law, SS 343.16 (5) (6) allows the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) to reexamine drivers when the Department has "good cause" to believe that the driver is incompetent or otherwise not qualified to be licensed. The Wisconsin Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) accepts reports from law enforcement called a Driver Condition and Behavior Report.
If you believe unusual or dangerous actions behind the wheel are caused by a medical condition, you should complete a Driver Condition or Behavior Report form MV3141. Driver Condition and Behavior Reports can be submitted to the WisDOT Medical Review Unit through U.S. mail, Badger TraCS, and by fax at 608-267-0518.
When Completing the MV3141
Age alone is not sufficient in reporting concerns. WisDOT cares about a driverís functional ability to operate a motor vehicle safely. Decisions on impaired drivers are based on individual signs, symptoms and behaviors, and the observations of others rather than the type of condition or diagnoses.
The report should include a brief summary of the concerning behavior indicating if there was possible confusion, possible blackout, rage, side effects of medications, etc. If there are supporting documents that can be submitted in addition to the narrative, you may include those, but it is not necessary. Any additional information the driver may share with you regarding the condition is also helpful.
The Medical Review Unit will review the information provided and determine the next course of action. Reports from law enforcement may require the driver to submit medical information or be tested by DMV.
DMV does not have the authority to cancel a driverís license based on a report from law enforcement, so we are required to get additional documentation and/or test the driver to determine if they are still safe to be on the road. The report must be based on something an officer personally witnessed or investigated and discussed with the driver who is being reported.
We cannot accept anonymous or third party reports. Driver Condition and Behavior Reports and any supplements submitted by law enforcement are subject to Wisconsinís Opens Records Law.
If a driver exhibits dangerous behavior that in other situations would result in a citation, not issuing one for a senior driver may prompt a disservice. Receiving a traffic citation may stimulate an elderly driver to reevaluate the decision to drive. Also, a citation may provide the impetus a family needs to help an aging loved one investigate alternatives to driving and to consider relinquishing a driverís license. We often hear after sending a person a letter from a Driver Condition and Behavior Report is "But I have a perfect driving record!"Ö or "that was no big deal, I didnít get a ticket." Past driving behavior can be an indicator of a personís safety habits; however, we are concerned with a personís ability to drive now and in the future. Aging, coupled with medical conditions, will not be reflected in past performance.
Checking report status
Driver Condition and Behavior Reports are processed usually within one week of receipt, or often sooner. You can call or email the WisDOT Medical Review Unit to check the status on a driver. Please keep in mind that due to medical confidentiality laws, we cannot share specific medical information with you.
If the driver is cleared medically by their physician (MD, DO, PA-C or APNP), we will normally require them to complete and pass tests with DMV to remain licensed. Depending on the medical information received, they may be required to submit periodic medical reports as a condition of licensure (this is for a driver regardless of age with a chronic, acute or progressive medical condition).
When a driver is reported to the Medical Review Unit, we review the Driver Condition & Behavior Report for the appropriate action, and if medical information is requested, a copy of that report will be attached and the driverís physician is required to read the report and acknowledge it when completing the medical form.
Reporting the same driver
We have a handful of drivers who have been reported multiple times and still hold a license. If a driver is cleared medically and passes tests, there is nothing more we can do. That is why it is important to understand that some older drivers may just be practicing poor driving habits and should lose their license through the "point" system, rather than Medical Review. This is why citations can be a very important tool, depending on the situation.
- Does the driver know the current time of day, day of the week, month of the year or year?
- Does the driver recall where they are coming from?
- Does the driver know their destination?
- Is the driver far from their residence?
- Does the driver have difficulty communicating, stumble over words, ramble in short, unattached, meaningless sentences or explanations of their driving ability?
- Is the driverís clothing: Disheveled, mismatched, inappropriate for existing weather conditions?
- Does the driver exhibit poor personal hygiene? (EXAMPLE: Urine/feces stain on clothing, on the person, in the motor vehicle.)
- Does the driver launch into accusations of perceived victimization by criminals?
- Is the driver wearing an identification bracelet or necklace indicating a medical condition that would affect safe driving mobility?
- Does the driver have large amounts of prescription medicines, prescribed by different doctors, visible in the motor vehicle?
- If the driver is out of the motor vehicle or exits the motor vehicle, do they have difficulty finding and removing driverís license, motor vehicle registration, insurance card from wallet/purse or producing other requested documents?
- Do they take a long period of time to walk a short distance, stumble/fall, shake excessively, or lack coordination when accomplishing simple tasks?
When there has been an accident, the accident and driver condition reports can be transmitted together to WisDOT and citations are transmitted to the courts using Traffic and Criminal Software (TraCS):
Questions? Contact us: Wisconsin DMV email service
Call: (608) 266-2327
Fax: (608) 267-0518
Last modified: September 4, 2012
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