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Thread: Michigan drivers

  1. #1
    Senior Member JMILLER11's Avatar
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    Michigan drivers

    I'm just getting the drivers license process going. It expired since I got hurt and I need to get back on the road now. I've faxed sec of state my doctors health/physical letter (Di4p) couple weeks back and was wondering when/how/what "they" do next. Anyone gone through this?

    After I get my license, I have a script from the doc to go through a drivers eval. The company said to contact them when I get my license valid from the state (I assume w/ drivers eval restriction on it). So, I'm trying to be patient, but was looking for a ball park time. Or if their is anything else I might need to know. Thanks

  2. #2
    Senior Member Robynbird569's Avatar
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    Being that 1) I am an impatient person and 2) gone the route of faxing things and nothing got done, I would go down to the Sec. of State office with the letter and speak to someone directly. Good luck.


    Stay safe my son. See you around thanksgiving!

  3. #3
    Senior Member SteveGIMP's Avatar
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    It's been nearly 10 years, but if I recall correctly, my process also started by obtaining a temporary or learner permit so that I could go thru driver training at Mary Freebed in Grand Rapids. They helped me with getting the temp, but I don't recall how long it took. I don't think it was a really long wait.

    After completing my training, Mary Freebed helped arrange an on-road evaluation conducted by a Sec. of State driver evaluator. After successfully completing the written and on-road tests, I was given a valid license.

    On a side note, the annoying part has been being flagged in the "system" by the Sec. of State as a driver with a condition which may impede my ability to safely operate a motor vehicle. This happened because the evaluator, in my opinion, was kinda freaked out by the EMC "fly-by-wire" controls I was using. He approved my license, but wanted to evaluate me again after one year.

    A year later, I got an evaluation notice and medical form for my doctor to complete. I again passed the on-road eval, but because my doctor had answered "Yes" to the question on the form asking if I should be evaluated periodically, the evaluator was forced to required another evalution, this time in two years. Two years later, another form and another eval. I begged the doc not to require periodic evaluations, but no luck. Nobody wants to be the doctor who signed off on a cripple who ends up plowing into a group of nuns.

    So, every couple of years I get a letter from Sec. of State wanting to check to be sure I'm safe to drive. I get the forms completed, take the wriiten test, check my vision, then drive around the block with an evaluator. He approves my license, then flags me in the computer, requiring me to do it all again in two years. Wash, rinse, repeat.

    Anyway, sorry to ramble. And good luck getting your license back.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by SteveGIMP
    Nobody wants to be the doctor who signed off on a cripple who ends up plowing into a group of nuns.
    Heh. That's funny. Except it's not.

    Do you have a degenerative condition or a SCI? I would be pissed off if my doctor insisted on treating me this way. AB people who have tickets and accidents don't have to go through a driving evaluation every couple of years, why should you? Hel, it sounds like it's easier for me to renew my racing license even though I haven't even been on track in over 6 months.

    C.

  5. #5
    Important note, the State of Michigan will pay for almost any vehicle mods for the disabled, if you need a vehicle to drive to/from work. This includes hand controls, seat/door modifications, and even a car-topper if it is deemed necessary. I guess they figure they'll get their money back eventually in state income taxes vs. leaving you unemployed.

    They'll also pay for the driving lessons like the ones offered at Mary Free Bed (where I plan to go as soon as I'm ready).

  6. #6
    Senior Member SteveGIMP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tiger Racing
    Do you have a degenerative condition or a SCI? I would be pissed off if my doctor insisted on treating me this way.
    I'm SCI. And my trouble was not having a doctor who really knew me well. It was a catch-22 of being healthy enough to only need to see residents for prescription refills. Unfortunately, my health isn't what it use to be, and I rarely drive anymore anyway.



    Quote Originally Posted by Zero
    Important note, the State of Michigan will pay for almost any vehicle mods for the disabled, if you need a vehicle to drive to/from work.
    That's a rather broad statement, and I'm not sure it's as true today as it once was, especially if you require expensive mods, like quad driver controls. It's definitely worth opening a case with voc. rehab and exploring the options, but making a case for expensive mods (mine were around $50,000) is not an easy task, and in my situation, required a boss who called in a few favors.

  7. #7
    Senior Member JMILLER11's Avatar
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    So Zero and Steve, I've got a voc rehab case open and when I brought up the vehicle/mod last year my consoler said something to the effect of - I don't know if we can help you there, maybe try a pass plan (which I'm planning on trying). Situation is that I've got a good full-time job lined up for mid-july so thats a definite time line I'm on. Any suggestions on how or if I should press voc rehab more or may it be simply beyond what they can do?

  8. #8
    Senior Member SteveGIMP's Avatar
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    I wouldn't give up without pressing your case, especially if you'd be unable to take the job without a vehicle. But I'm afraid the days of MRS spending tens of thousands of dollars on vehicle mods are long gone.

  9. #9
    Like Steve says, it doesn't hurt to push. I spoke directly with the State of Michigan social worker for this program less than a year ago, and she definitely hinted that a car-topper for a folding wheelchair should be do-able. How much do those things cost with installation? They can't be cheap.

    She did indicate that one factor in determining how much you can get depended on which county you were working in, and what their individual budget for the program is that year.

    At the very least you should be able to get part of the mods covered, I would think.

  10. #10
    I just came back from my first driver's training session at MFB. It went well I think. After just an hour behind the wheel the hand controls felt natural. The instructor and I were actively chatting the whole time and I was able to maintain concentration on my driving without trouble. I only made one small mistake: I misjudged how hard to push down on the handle during a left turn and spun the tires, snapping the car around the turn quite suddenly.

    The instructor says I'll need two more two-hour sessions like this before they'll take me to my driving test with the state. The driver's rehab department at MFB is apparently closely tied to the State, so it doesn't appear I have much say in the matter. This is fine except that they're short-staffed at MFB right now, so there's a minimum six-week wait between sessions, possibly longer. So it's going to be at least three months before I'm ready to take the test. And I have to pass the test before I can get the hand controls installed. I'll be lucky to be driving again before the snow flies!

    As always though, I have to praise the folks at MFB, they really have an excellent program there with a lot of great people. It was nice to wheel around there a bit and see a few of my old PTs/OTs again.

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