Disputes, Appeals and Reviews

Effective November 21, 2016, when an applicant or their legal representative attends an ICBC Driver Licensing Office to request an oral review of their Immediate Roadside Prohibition (IRP), they will be offered a minimum of three review appointments available within 14 days of the date of service of the IRP.  This policy better ensures that applicants receive a timely review decision, in line with the 21-day timeline legislated under section 215.5(6) of the Motor Vehicle Act.

If applicants or their representatives are unable or unwilling to schedule the review within the 14-day period from the date the IRP notice was served by the police, they will be asked to provide a rationale on an updated version of the MV2726 IRP Application for Review as to why they need to have a review beyond 14 days.

A new section on the MV2726 stands as notification to the applicant that, if they are unable or unwilling to schedule a review within the 14-day period, the Superintendent may not be able to provide a decision to the applicants within the 21-day timeline, and that a stay of the driving prohibition may not be granted.

Effective April 1, 2016, section 215 of the Motor Vehicle Act is amended. The amendment makes it clear that the burden of proof in an Immediate Roadside Prohibition (IRP) review hearing is on the applicant, and that information provided should focus on the specific grounds of review under which the applicant has applied.  The change applies to a Notice of Prohibition (IRP) issued on or after April 1, 2016.  

Effective December 21, 2015 RoadSafetyBC will no longer be providing disclosure documents outside of the review process. Only applicants that have applied for a review of a driving prohibition, vehicle impoundment, or licensing decision, and paid their hearing fees will receive disclosure documents. ICBC will provide the applicant with all disclosure documents available when the application for review is submitted. If RoadSafetyBC receives new disclosure materials after the application for review is submitted, RoadSafetyBC will disclose all of the new documents to the applicant or their representative.

If you do not wish to file an application for review, but would like to obtain documents related to your administrative sanction, you may file a request under section 5 of FOIPPA to obtain the documentation. You may submit a Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIPPA) application through the Ministry of Finance. Information on this process can be found at http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/governments/about-the-bc-government/open-government/open-information/freedom-of-information or you can phone the Information Access Operations office at 250-387-1321 for further information.

Overview

This section of the website outlines the processes involved when you disagree with a decision made regarding your driving behaviour and/or affecting your driving privileges and issuance of your driver’s licence. The process you will go through to have a decision reviewed is called an administrative justice process as it does not go through the court system.

The administrative justice review process requires you to first complete the applicable review request form and submit it with payment. There are different forms and different fees for the various administrative justice review processes. If the form is not available for download from this webpage, you may get a form, schedule a review and pay the review fee at any ICBC Driver Licensing Office.

  • Written Reviews require you to submit your case in writing, and a decision will be made to you in writing
  • Oral Reviews (only available for certain cases) are conducted by telephone at a scheduled time

Review decisions under authority of the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles are final, but subject to judicial review – which means you can always Appeal the ‘final’ decision to the B.C. Supreme Court (see the Appeal to the Supreme Court section at bottom of this page).

Review of a Driving Prohibition for Driving Unlicensed

Note: Driving without a valid driver’s licence is different than driving while prohibited. Driving while prohibited carries heavier sanctions – see Caught Driving While Prohibited or Suspended page for more information.

Driving without a valid driver’s licence is an offence under section 24 of the Motor Vehicle Act. If caught driving without a licence, police can issue a driving prohibition and have the vehicle you are driving impounded.

Police-issued sanctions for driving without a licence end as soon as the driver acquires a valid B.C. driver’s licence – this is the easiest solution and does not require a review.

If you believe you should not have been identified as an unlicensed driver or that you have a reason to be exempt from the requirement to hold a valid B.C. driver’s licence (i.e., you have a valid licence from another province), you may submit your reasons in writing to the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles. An adjudicator will consider this submission and compare it with your driving record. The adjudicator’s review decision is sent to you once your application has been considered.

To request a review, download this form: Application for Review of a Driving Prohibition for Driving While Unlicensed (PDF) or pick one up from any ICBC Driver Licensing Centre. The completed form must be submitted with the full review fee and any information or evidence needed to support your application, including your written reasons – see Fees for Services (PDF).

If, after the review, the adjudicator decides the prohibition is to be terminated, the adjudicator will inform you and let you know when any exemption will expire. The reinstatement fee that is payable when you re-apply for a B.C. driver’s licence is waived only if the out-of-province licence was produced at the time the prohibition was served.

If you are incorrectly identified as an unlicensed driver, this will be corrected on your record and you are not be required to pay the reinstatement fee. If a review is conducted and the prohibition is confirmed, you are advised that you remain prohibited from driving until you obtain a valid B.C. driver’s licence.

For more information, see also, Driving Without a Valid B.C. Driver's Licence page on this website.

12-Hour Roadside Driving Suspension Issued to a GLP Driver

There is no review process available for a 12-Hour Roadside Suspension issued by police to a Graduated Licensing Program (GLP) driver. If you disagree with the actions of police, you can lodge a complaint with the police detachment identified on the 'Notice' you were given by police.

24-Hour Roadside Driving Prohibition

If your driving prohibition was issued at the roadside as police believed you were driving while affected by alcohol, you may request an administrative review by the Superintendent to have the prohibition removed from your driving record. A request for a review much be submitted to the Superintendent within seven days of the prohibition being issued.

There is no review process available for 24-Hour Roadside Prohibitions issued for driving while affected by a drug other than alcohol.

To request a review, you must complete an 'Application for Review of a 24-Hour Prohibition' form, available from any ICBC Driver Licensing Office. You will need the date and location where you were issued the prohibition by police and all relevant information to support your request to review the decision. There is a fee that must be paid when you submit your request – see Fees for Services (PDF).

After you have submitted your request, you will receive (by mail or fax) a copy of the police officer's report concerning your 24-hour prohibition and the date set for the review. You may then submit further evidence in support of your submission, to the Superintendent, but it must be received before the set review date to be considered.

Under the Motor Vehicle Act you are allowed seven days from the date of service to apply for a review of the prohibition.  The Superintendent does not accept applications for late reviews of Immediate Roadside Prohibitions or 24hr prohibitions

Immediate Roadside Prohibitions (IRP) – 3-day, 7-day, 30-day, 90-day

You have seven days from the date you received the Notice of Driving Prohibition to request RoadSafetyBC to review the prohibition. The adjudicator can only consider these grounds during the review:

  • You were not the driver or in care or control of a motor vehicle
  • You were not advised of your right to a second test on an approved screening device (ASD)
  • You requested a second test, but the officer did not perform the test
  • Your second test was not performed on a different ASD
  • The prohibition was not served on the basis of the lower ASD test result
  • The result of the ASD test was not reliable
  • The ASD, which formed the basis for the prohibition, did not register a WARN reading
  • The ASD registered a WARN, but your blood alcohol content was less than 0.05 (50 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood)
  • The ASD, which formed the basis for the prohibition, did not register a FAIL reading
  • The ASD registered a FAIL, but your blood alcohol content was less than 0.08 (80 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood)
  • You did not refuse or fail to comply with a demand to provide a breath sample, or you had a reasonable excuse for refusing or failing to comply with a demand; OR
  • You did not have the required number of previous WARN range prohibitions for a 7 or 30 day prohibition (in which case the Superintendent may reduce the length of the prohibition and related monetary penalties)

The hardship that may be caused by the loss of your driving privileges cannot be considered during a review.

To request a review you must complete an 'Application for Review of an Immediate Roadside Prohibition' form, available from any ICBC Driver Licensing Office. You will need to include the date and location where you were issued the prohibition by police and all relevant information to support your request to review the decision. There is a fee that must be paid when you submit your request – see Fees for Services (PDF). The fee differs depending on how you will present your case – written submissions can be provided for any immediate roadside prohibition or you may present your case by phone (oral) for any 30-day or 90-day prohibition on the date scheduled by the Superintendent's office.

Prior to the review you will receive a copy of police information the adjudicator will consider. You are given an opportunity to present further information to the adjudicator before the review is held. Important: even though you are going through a review process, you may not drive while the prohibition is in effect.

After the review the adjudicator will send you a written decision. In most cases, the decision will be sent within 21 days from the date you were served with the Notice of Driving Prohibition. The three possible decision outcomes are the driving prohibition:

  • The prohibition will be revoked (i.e., removed from your driving record) and you can apply for a new driver’s licence (the driver's licence reinstatement fee and any monetary penalties will be waived)
  • The length of the prohibition will be reduced
  • Or, the prohibition is confirmed, unchanged

Drivers dissatisfied with the outcome of their review may also make an application under the Judicial Review Procedure Act to have the decision reviewed by the Supreme Court.

See also, IRP review guide for applicants (PDF).

Technical materials the Superintendent may rely on during an IRP review hearing:

Alco-Sensor FST Operator Manual:

Certificate of Analysis:

Under the Motor Vehicle Act you are allowed seven days from the date of service to apply for a review of the prohibition.  The Superintendent does not accept applications for late reviews of Immediate Roadside Prohibitions or 24hr prohibitions.

Administrative Driving Prohibition (ADP) – 90-day

The review process is the same as what is outlined above for 3-day, 7-day, 30-day and 90-day Immediate Roadside Prohibitions. The difference is that if you apply for a review, the ADP driving prohibition does not begin until the review is complete and finds the ADP stands as issued. When reviewing ADPs, the adjudicator can only consider the following:

  • you did not operate or have care or control of the vehicle
  • you did not have a blood alcohol content greater than 0.08 within three hours
  • you did not fail or refuse to comply with a demand for a breath or blood tests; or
  • you had reasonable excuse for failing or refusing to comply

Missed the seven-day window for review of your ADP? (PDF)

Review of a Prohibition Decision issued due to a Poor Driving Record

The Driver Improvement Program (DIP) identifies and intervenes with high-risk drivers and encourages them to improve their driving habits through various interventions. The Superintendent of Motor Vehicles may issue a driving prohibition if a review of your driving record shows that you have a history of poor or dangerous driving behaviour.   If you have been identified as a driver who has engaged in poor or dangerous driving behaviour, you may have received a Notice of Intent to Prohibit and/or a Notice of Prohibition.

In accordance with the principles of administrative fairness, drivers may request a review of a driving prohibition issued under the DIP.  You must send a completed Application for Review form and pay a non-refundable fee of $100 for each application.

Notice of Intent – Reviews

Drivers who have been issued a Notice of Intent to Prohibit may apply for a review and attach a submission of why a driving prohibition should not proceed or should be reduced to a shorter duration. Submissions must be in writing and drivers may include any information they wish to be considered. Drivers who do not make a submission within 21 days from the date of the Notice of Intent to Prohibit will receive a Notice of Prohibition.

Notice of Prohibition – Reviews

Drivers who receive a Notice of Prohibition must acknowledge the driving prohibition and surrender their driver’s licence. However, they may make a submission using the Application for Review and pay a review fee to explain why a driving prohibition should not continue or should be reduced to a shorter duration. The prohibition will remain in effect during the review.

An Adjudicator may consider the driving record and history, personal or financial hardship, family responsibilities, employment and other relevant information. Once the review has concluded the driver will be advised of the outcome.

The application form you must complete may be downloaded below:

. . . or you can pick on up from any ICBC Driver Licensing Office – Form MV2323 ' Driver Improvement Program Application for Review'. There is a fee to apply – see Fees for Services (PDF)

Along with the completed form and payment, you must include your written reasons as to why you think the driving prohibition should not have been issued or why the length of the prohibition should be shorter. The ICBC Driver Licensing Center will give you a copy of the review guidelines which outlines the full process.

Drivers who are dissatisfied with the outcome of their review have the right, under section 94 of the Motor Vehicle Act, to file an appeal of the decision at the British Columbia Supreme Court within 30 days after they receive notice of prohibition from driving a motor vehicle. Drivers are responsible for bearing the cost of their appeal and are prohibited from driving while their appeal is in progress unless a stay of driving prohibition is ordered by the court.

For more information, read the Driver Improvement Program page on this website and / or download this factsheet: Driver Improvement Program (PDF)

Review of a Driver Medical Fitness Decision

If your medical fitness was assessed and you are not satisfied with the outcome of the decision, you may request a review of the decision (called an Administrative Justice Decision) that denied, cancelled or placed restrictions on your driver’s licence. Also, should your medical condition improve later, you may request a review of the decision.

  • There is no fee associated with requesting a review and the process of how to apply for a review is outlined in the documents you received with the Superintendent’s decision on your medical fitness
  • You must be able to provide the Superintendent’s office with new medical information indicating an improvement in your condition
  • An adjudicator or case manager will review your case and may need to request additional information from you and/or assessments
  • At the conclusion of the review, the adjudicator or case manager will notify you in writing either confirming the original decision or advising of a different driver fitness decision

Driver fitness reviews are final and binding, but are subject to judicial review. This means a court of law may be requested to rule on the appropriateness of the administrative justice decision. Drivers dissatisfied with the outcome of their review may also make an application under the Judicial Review Procedure Act to have the decision reviewed by the Supreme Court. You are responsible for the costs of the appeal.

Some driver medical fitness decisions are made by an Urgent Driver’s Licence Review and have specific timelines and criteria, please see the Urgent Licence Review fact sheet (PDF).

Review of a Vehicle Impoundment and Early Release of the Vehicle

Whether you are the driver of an impounded vehicle or owner of the impounded vehicle, you have the right to request an administrative review of the impoundment if the period of impoundment is over seven days. There are instructions on how to apply for a review on the 'Notice of Impoundment' that was issued at the roadside.

For information see, Vehicle Impoundmen (PDF).

To apply for a review, attend the nearest ICBC Driver Licensing Office to complete a Vehicle Impoundment Application for Review and pay the review fee – see Fees for Services (PDF).

When a review decision is made, you will receive the decision by regular mail. It will be sent to the address you provided on your review application. If your review results in the impoundment being lifted, the Superintendent's office will notify you and fax an 'order of release' to the impoundment lot. You may pick up your vehicle and pay the storage and towing fees that apply.

Stolen Vehicle: Police can authorize the release of the vehicle if they are satisfied it was stolen. The cost of towing and storage accrued to that point must be paid by the vehicle owner before the vehicle is released.

Unlicensed Driver: If your vehicle was impounded because you or the person operating it was unlicensed at the time, your vehicle can be released when you or the person who operated the vehicle is issued a new driver's licence. For driver licence information see ICBC. This option is not available if the driver was prohibited from driving at the time the vehicle was impounded.

Driving Prohibition and Impoundment: If police impounded your vehicle and also served you with a driving prohibition, and you have grounds to have the prohibition reviewed, you may request a review of the driving prohibition. Only the driver of the vehicle who received the driving prohibition by police may apply for the review. If successful, the vehicle will be immediately released and the towing and impound fees refunded.

Other Impoundable Offences: For example, impoundments not related to an alcohol related driving prohibition, such as driving while prohibited or suspended; excessive speeding, racing or stunt driving; or failure to obey a driving restriction.

A request for a review can be made by the owner of the vehicle (who was not the driver receiving the impoundment sanction) on grounds of absence of consent to allow the driver to use the vehicle.

Early Release on Compassionate Grounds: An individual who holds a valid driver's licence and who cohabits with the owner of the vehicle who received the vehicle impoundment sanction may apply for early release on compassionate grounds (such as economic hardship) – the request for review must be submitted within 15 days of the date of the impoundment. Information on the review process is printed on the back of the Notice of Impoundment.

To request a Review, visit any ICBC Driver Licensing Office to fill out the appropriate form, make application and pay the required fees.  ICBC will submit your review application and schedule any necessary hearings.

Reconsideration of a Referral to Remedial Programs

In April 2013 RoadSafetyBC put in place an enhanced referral and formal administrative reconsideration process for drivers referred to remedial programs – the Responsible Driver Program (RDP) and the Ignition Interlock Program (IIP). Under the enhanced process, drivers with alcohol-related driving prohibitions referred to remedial programs under section 25.1 of the Act are provided with a copy of their driving record and information about the formal process available to have their referral reconsidered.

In February 2016 RoadSafetyBC introduced legislation to make referrals to the remedial programs mandatory for many drivers. Please note that if you have been referred to remedial programs under section 25.2 of the Act, you are not eligible to apply for a reconsideration.

If you have been referred to the RDP and/or the IIP under section 25.1 of the Act, you may seek a reconsideration of that decision. Within 30 days of the date of your referral letter, you may apply to the Superintendent for a reconsideration of your referral(s). To do so you must:

  1. Complete an Application for Reconsideration form: Remedial Program Application for Reconsideration (PDF)
  2. Attach to your application form all evidence and submissions that you wish the Superintendent to consider
  3. Mail or fax the reconsideration application form and written submission to RoadSafetyBC at:

    RoadSafetyBC
    PO BOX 9254 STN PROV GOVT
    VICTORIA BC V8W 9J2

    Facsimile: (250) 953-8639

You must ensure that all of the relevant information that you wish the Superintendent to consider is included with your application. The Superintendent will notify you in writing once your referral to remedial programs has been assessed and a decision is made.

Reconsideration applications submitted within 30 days of the date of your referral letter will result in a stay of your remedial program requirements until the reconsideration is concluded. This means that while the reconsideration is being conducted, you will not be required to register for the RDP and/or the IIP. However, you must provide a completed application and submission otherwise the stay will not be granted. Your referral to the RDP and/or the IIP, and/or your request for reconsideration of these programs does not alter or affect any other licence cancellation, licence suspension, driving prohibition or any outstanding licensing requirements.

Please see the Administration of Remedial Programs for frequently asked questions, referral guidelines and policies.

Late Applications:

Submissions made after 30 days are considered late applications. Late applications will be considered by the Superintendent; however, your requirement to participate in remedial programs will not be stayed during the reconsideration process. This means that you will be required to register for and participate in the RDP and/or the IIP during the reconsideration process if your application is late. Your referral to the RDP and/or the IIP, and/or your request for reconsideration of these programs does not alter or affect any other licence cancellation, licence suspension, driving prohibition or any outstanding licensing requirements.

Outstanding Historical Referrals to Remedial Programs

Drivers referred to remedial programs prior to April 2013 who have outstanding remedial program requirements may also apply for reconsideration. If you have an outstanding referral to remedial programs and wish to apply for reconsideration then please download the application form available here (PDF). Your referral will proceed uninterrupted while the reconsideration is being completed. You will be notified in writing once your reconsideration application has been assessed and a decision has been made.

Disputing a Violation Ticket and Penalty Points

Penalty points are applied to the driving records of driving offenders upon court conviction of traffic violation tickets. If you disagree with a violation ticket and/or the attached fine, you must dispute your ticket within 30 days, otherwise the courts will deem you guilty, you will owe the fine, and penalty points will be applied accordingly. The process is started by personally registering your dispute at any ICBC Driver Licensing Office or by mail. Go to Disputing a Traffic Violation Ticket page of ICBC’s website for more information on this process.

Appeal an ICBC Decision to Deny, Cancel, Restrict or Suspend a Driver's Licence

If ICBC denies issuing you a driver’s licence, or cancels or restricts your licence

You will receive a formal Record of Decision by outlining why the proposed action is being taken. You may appeal on any grounds, such as: errors of fact, irrelevant factors, relevant information was not considered, personal hardship (employment, education, medical, economic) by applying to the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles.

An appeal is started by scheduling a hearing at any ICBC Driver Licensing Office by completing a “Driver's Licence Refusal/Restriction Application for Appeal” form and paying the fee (see Fees for Services (PDF). You will be contacted to confirm the details of your hearing, including what will be considered by the adjudicator (testimony, evidence, documents, etc.)

The Superintendent will confirm, vary or rescind the decision(s) made by ICBC. If your appeal is unsuccessful, you will receive a formal Record of Decision from the ICBC Driver Licensing Office outlining why the proposed action will be taken.

Please note that if the Superintendent directs ICBC to refuse to issue you a driver’s licence based on unpaid debt to an impound lot operator, you may not appeal.  For further information on the Refuse to Issue for Impound Operators process, please see the Vehicle Impoundment page.

Attend a Show Cause Hearing Upon Notice of an ICBC Proposal to Suspend or Cancel a Designation Licence or Certificate

You may wish to 'show cause' why the proposed action should not be taken. Show cause hearings are held in only for special-case scenarios involving a business (driving school or automotive repair facility) or certain individuals (driving trainer’s instructor or AirCare repair centre technician).

You will need to schedule a hearing by applying at any ICBC Driver Licensing Office and paying the prescribed Show Cause Hearing fee – see Fees for Services (PDF). When the show cause hearing is scheduled, you will be notified with confirmation of the details for the hearing including what materials can be considered by the adjudicator (testimony, evidence, documents).

The Superintendent will confirm, vary or rescind the decision(s) made by ICBC. If your appeal is unsuccessful, you will receive a formal Record of Decision from the ICBC Driver Licensing Office outlining why the proposed action will be taken.

For more information about Show Cause Hearings see the following documents:

Appeal to the Supreme Court for Judicial Review of an Administrative Decision

Administrative justice decisions made by or on behalf of the Superintendent are final, but subject to judicial review.

If you disagree with the decision or outcome of an administrative review or hearing listed above you may file an appeal with the B.C. Supreme Court. A judge cannot overturn an administrative decision, but can instruct the Superintendent to conduct a new review/hearing with a new adjudicator.

Drivers making these Appeals are responsible for their own court costs. For information on how to appeal to the Supreme court go to www.supremecourtbc.ca