QC TRO forces LTO to find stopgap for license card shortage

Last month, the Quezon City Regional Trial Court issued a 20-day TRO (temporary restraining order) to the LTO (Land Transportation Office) that prevented the agency from receiving deliveries of license cards from a new supplier, Banner Plastic Card Inc.

Nearly a month later, the LTO is scrambling for stopgap measures as it is still unclear when, or even whether, the TRO will be lifted.

LTO: OR/CR stamping, e-licenses, or validity extension? image

“Lahat ng paraan ay ating gagawin kung sakaling hindi man ma-lift itong TRO sa pagdi-distribute natin ng license cards. All suggestions are being welcomed by the agency

[We are looking into all possibilities in case the TRO against our distribution of license cards is not lifted. All suggestions are welcomed by the agency],” said LTO chief Assistant Secretary Vigor Mendoza II.

Among the measures considered are the stamping of the vehicle OR/CR (Official Receipt/Certificate of Registration), e-driver’s licenses, and extension of driver’s license validities.

LTO: OR/CR stamping, e-licenses, or validity extension? image

The first one was suggested by Agri party-list Representative Wilbert Lee, while the second option is already in effect. The author currently holds the paper receipt and has an e-license (accessible via the Land Transportation Manage System or LTMS portal) after renewing during the period of the license card shortage. Driver’s licenses that are about to expire have been given a one-year extension as confirmed by Northern Samar 1st District Rep. Paul Daza.

“We will consult with the Department of Transportation (DOTr) on what’s the best measure so that we will no longer add burden to our drivers and motorists,” added Mendoza.

Despite the setback, the LTO is optimistic that the TRO will be lifted or expire (the 20-day TRO ends today, September 6) without any extensions, thus allowing the agency to fast-track the processing and distribution of new driver’s licenses.