September 14, 2012
THE BELTZ LAW FIRM
The occupational license laws in Texas not only provide that a person who is granted an occupational license may operate a motor vehicle to and for work purposes, but also he/she may drive for any “essential need.” What exactly is an “essential need?” Fortunately, the legislature, in their infinite wisdom, has seen it fit to define that term as follows:
Sec. 521.241. DEFINITIONS. In this subchapter:
(1) “Essential need” means a need of a person for the operation of a motor vehicle:
(A) in the performance of an occupation or trade or for transportation to and from the place at which the person practices the person’s occupation or trade;
(B) for transportation to and from an educational facility in which the person is enrolled; or
(C) in the performance of essential household duties.
Well the definition is not too broad or too specific. It serves the purpose of most of our clients in that it allows them to go to work, school, the grocery store, church, etc. No, it doesn’t give them the right to drive at midnight from bar to bar but that probably got them in trouble in the first place!!
It encompasses the important parts, which is work, school, and house hold duties, but leaves other things undefined such as trips to the zoo, lake trips on the weekend, etc. The important thing to remember is that an occupational license is temporary but restrictive, but necessary in this State. If you are a person who takes mass transit, you probably don’t need an occupational license. The rest of us though, can’t live without a license!
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