Tips and Avoiding Common Problems

The following recommendations should help you complete your application package and avoid delays. By following these tips, the length of the application process should be minimized.

  • Address changes: Inform the Board staff of any address changes; in fact, you should consider letting the Board know immediately. The Board will send correspondence to your last known address. If it does not know of an address change, you may not receive important information. Failure to notify the Board of an address change is not grounds for rescheduling a hearing.
  • Review application instructions: Before submitting your application, reread the application instructions and make sure you have met all the application requirements. An incomplete application will lengthen the process.
  • Copies and faxes: You may fax your application package to the Board. However, if the fax comes through illegibly, we may ask you to mail the application package. You should keep copies of all documents you send in case they are lost in the mail. Also, you should send copies of court documents and police reports rather than originals; we destroy application files after a certain period of time and may not be able to return originals.
  • Personal statement: Be specific in the personal statement that addresses all your arrests. If your statement is vague, the investigator may ask for a more detailed statement, and your application will be delayed. Alternatively, the Board may decide that you failed to provide enough information for the Board to grant you a good cause exception. The personal statement is an opportunity for you to present, in detail, how you have been rehabilitated. Also, make sure your statement is legible. Finally, do not omit any arrest on your record, even if it does not appear on the DPS denial or suspension letter or did not result in a conviction or trial. Please see the Forms & Resources section of our Web site for a document that will help you understand what sort of information the Board is looking for in personal statements.
  • Police report:If you are required to submit a police report, be sure you submit the entire report and not just the ticket or citation. The police report will include a narrative that presents the arresting officer's account of what happened. If you submit only the citation, without the narrative, your application will be delayed.
  • Accuracy of criminal history: If you believe your criminal history records are inaccurate, contact the Department of Public Safety (DPS) or the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to challenge them. The Board almost always will assume that the information in your criminal history records is accurate. For charges that took place within Arizona, call DPS at (602) 223-2222 to challenge your record or to get a copy of your criminal history. For charges that took place outside of Arizona, call the FBI at (304) 625-5590.
  • Vacated or set-aside convictions: If you had a conviction vacated or set aside, feel free to send a copy of the court order. This document will show the Board that you do not have any outstanding sentencing obligations. However, an order to vacate or set aside a conviction is not the same as a dismissal, even though the order may use the word "dismissed."