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Reporting a medically unfit driver: What happens next?

My health care team reported me to the Ministry of Transportation. What does this mean?

Notes on driving

Driving is a complex skill with many components, including:

  • Attention and concentration
  • Working memory
  • Reaction time
  • Ability to process what you see
  • Planning and problem solving
  • Vision
  • Physical abilities

If any of these areas are impaired, driving can be a risk to you and others on the road.

Common conditions that could affect these skills include:

  • Brain injury or Stroke
  • Seizures
  • Visual impairment
  • Dementia
  • Substance use disorder
  • Psychiatric illness
  • Changes in medication

To keep a G-level licence in Ontario, you must meet national medical standards and all driving requirements (e.g. driving in the dark, driving on a 400 series highway), even if you don’t plan on doing these activities.

Why was I reported to the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario (MTO)?

Doctors, nurse practitioners and optometrists by law have to report patients who have or appear to have certain high risk medical conditions, vision conditions or functional impairments.

Doctors, nurse practitioners, optometrists and occupational therapists can report conditions to the MTO that make it dangerous for a person to drive.

What happens once I’m reported?

The MTO decides on the next step. 

Once a report has been filed, the MTO will review it and send you a letter with their decision. If your health care provider has told you not to drive, then you should not drive until you get your letter from the MTO, which may take up to 30 days. 

If the report filed confirms you do not meet national medical standards, your licence will be suspended. 

If your licence is suspended, the MTO will send you a formal Notice of Suspension and a letter about the next steps.

Can I get my licence back?

In most cases, the MTO will provide you with a form to take to your doctor or nurse practitioner to complete. You will have to send the completed form to the MTO. 

Your licence will be considered for reinstatement when the MTO has reviewed the updated information. 

Process for Licence Reinstatement

1. If your report shows you meet the medical standards to drive, the MTO will give you your licence back.

2. If it is still not clear to the MTO if you are safe to drive, you may need to do a functional on-road driving assessment. This includes:

  • A full in-clinic medical assessment
  • An on-road evaluation conducted by a specially trained occupational therapist and a qualified driving instructor

If this is the case, the MTO will send you a list of approved functional assessment centres.

The assessment takes 2-3 hours.

The cost for a driving evaluation is not covered by OHIP or the MTO. In some cases, insurance companies may cover the costs of the assessment.

The occupational therapist from the functional assessment centre will report the results of your assessment to the MTO.

I feel angry and upset that I may not be able to drive. Is this common?

Yes. Driving is often felt to be an important part of a person’s independence and lifestyle. It is very common to feel upset or angry when driving abilities are questioned.

One thing to remember is that driving is a privilege and not a right, and it is the duty of your care provider to make sure that you and everyone else are safe on the road.

What other methods of transportation can I use?

  • WheelTrans (ask your health-care team about applying)
  • Public transit (e.g. TTC)
  • Taxis
  • Uber or Lyft
  • Friends or family
  • Toronto Ride: 416-481-5250
  • Other local options are available at Toronto Seniors Helpline:
    416-217-2077

Contact the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario (MTO)

By mail: 

Ministry of Transportation 
Driver Improvement Office
Medical Review Section
77 Wellesley St. W, Box 589 
Toronto, Ontario M7A 1N3 

By phone: 
416-235-1773 or 1-800-268-1481 (within Ontario) 

By fax: 
416-235-3400 or 1-800-304-7889 

By email: 
drivermedicalreview@ontario.ca 

Business hours: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to Friday

Need more information?

Visit the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario’s medical review page at http://www.ontario.ca/driverimprovement.


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