Reporting Requirements

The reporting procedure summarized herein represents an abbreviated version of the Registry's entire reporting process.

Please note the following basic information: If a licensee has a medical condition which he or she believes may affect his or her ability to operate a motor vehicle, he or she must report such condition to the Registrar and refrain from operating a motor vehicle until the condition is resolved. There is no legal requirement for a physician or other interested party to report a possible unfit driver to the Registry of Motor Vehicles; however, if an interested party chooses to report such a driver to the Registry, then the Registry will act on the information provided, in accordance with the procedure noted below:

  1. Form of Reports:
    All reports must be in writing and must be signed by the person making the report. The report must contain the name and address or name and telephone number of the complaining party. The report must contain identification of the individual whose driving ability is being questioned, including the name and at least one of the following: social security number, license, date of birth, and address. In addition, the report must contain the reason for the complaint and/or a description of the purported functional limitation.

    Medical Affairs will accept reports from: family members, physicians, law enforcement, or other interested third parties, including, but not limited to, members of the individual's community (such as neighbors), private driving schools, physical therapists, etc.

    The Registry cannot guarantee anonymity. Massachusetts has a Public Records Law and a copy of this form will be released if a formal written request as to what initiated the RMV action is received from the licensee.

    When the report is from a health care provider:

    Please note that if the physician's report is not submitted on the medical evaluation form provided by the Registry, then the physician must make the report on his or her official letterhead, and include his or her signed name, Massachusetts Board of Registration in Medicine number, and telephone number and/or address.

  2. Registry Procedure Upon Receipt of Reports (excluding health care providers and law enforcement):

    View the Non-Expert Workflow Diagram

    When the Medical Affairs Branch receives a report that a licensed driver may be unfit to operate a motor vehicle due to an alleged physical or mental condition, Medical Affairs shall conduct an individualized assessment of the reported individual's qualifications to operate a motor vehicle safely. Medical Affairs shall initiate such assessment by requesting that the reported individual submit a medical evaluation from his or her health care provider which addresses the individual's reported condition and medical qualifications to operate a motor vehicle safely. Medical Affairs shall then take any appropriate licensing actions, in consideration of the health care provider's evaluation.

    The Registry seeks an expert opinion from the individual's health care provider because the health care provider is the person best qualified to respond to questions regarding the individual's medical condition and its potential implications on the ability to operate a motor vehicle safely. In appropriate circumstances and in consideration of the health care provider's recommendations, the Registry will assess the individual's ability to operate a motor vehicle by requiring that the individual undergo a competency road examination and/or an assessment for adaptive equipment and appropriate license restrictions, prior to taking a licensing action.

    In instances where the Registry has conflicting medical information concerning a Licensee's medical condition, the Registry shall accept as true the information supplied by the licensed medical physician. When there is conflicting information between two physicians, the Registry shall accept as true the information supplied by the physician specializing in the particular field of medicine addressing the licensee's reported condition.

    Please note: While the Registry is in the process of evaluating a reported individual's competency to operate a motor vehicle safely, the individual will have an activity hold entered on the license record. This activity hold will prevent the issuance of a learner's permit or new license to the individual until the evaluation has been concluded.

  3. Registry Procedure Upon Receipt of Reports from Health Care Providors and Law Enforcement:

    View the Expert Workflow Diagram

    When the initial report is from a health care provider or from law enforcement, Medical Affairs may initiate a licensing action directly, without first seeking a health care provider evaluation.

  4. Possible licensing actions:

    1. No further action if the Registry concludes there is no basis to the complaint.
    2. Request that the individual schedule and take a competency road examination and/or an assessment for adaptive equipment and appropriate license restrictions.
    3. Request that the individual voluntarily surrender his or her license if the Registry concludes that the individual is not qualified to operate a motor vehicle safely. An individual who voluntarily surrenders his or her license is eligible to receive a Massachusetts identification card free of charge. In addition, when a license is voluntarily surrendered there are no negative insurance ramifications. Further, if the individual's condition improves such that he or she is able to provide appropriate documentation of his or her medical qualifications to operate a motor vehicle safely, the license may be restored to its former active status.
    4. If the individual does not comply with the Registry's request to voluntarily surrender the license, Medical Affairs shall notify the Driver Control Unit to schedule a hearing on the matter. If the Driver Control Unit does not find in favor of the individual, then the license may be indefinitely revoked.


  5. Where to Send Reports:
Registry of Motor Vehicles
Director of Medical Affairs
P.O. Box 55889
Boston, MA 02205-5889
Attn: Director of Medical Affairs

Fax: 857-368-0802
Tel: 857-368-8020

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Massachusetts Department of Transportation

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