What You Can Expect at a DMV Hearing
DMV hearings are unlike what you may have experienced in a court hearing because both are independent of each other. Every person arrested with a DUI must make an “Administrative Per Se” request the DMV within 10 days of the arrest. It is very important to make this request within the specified period or your license will be suspended. In order to fight your DMV hearing, it is imperative that you work with an experienced DUI defense attorney. Our Chico DUI attorneys have over 30 years of combined experience. Call our office today, we will request the DMV hearing on your behalf at no cost to you.
Must Show Overwhelming Proof of Innocence
When you are being charged with a crime, you are innocent until proven guilty. This is not the case with DMV hearings. The DMV is protecting their interests and anyone deemed a threat to the roadways does not have a good chance of keeping their license. You must be able to answer the following questions in your favor:
• Did the officer have cause to believe you were driving under the influence according to California law?
• Were you lawfully placed under arrest?
• Did you test at 0.08% blood alcohol content at the time you were driving? If those questions are all answered in the affirmative satisfactorily, you have no chance of winning your DMV hearing.
The DMV is not like the court system in that they take into account your need to drive for work reasons. This will not be considered. If you and your defense lawyer can call into question the legitimacy of your DUI charge, you may be able to win your DMV hearing. For instance, if you can prove that the officer was not qualified to give you the test or they did not follow the proper procedures, those would be reasons to doubt your charge. Your breath test must have been performed within 3 hours of your arrest and the officer must have observed you for 15 minutes prior to performing the test. If any of these requirements were not met, you could have a chance at prevailing during your hearing. Only an attorney who has experienced how rigorous and extensive DMV hearings can be will be qualified to help you.
What Happens If You Win Your Hearing?
The important fact to remember is that the DMV and the California court system are two different entities. If you win your DMV hearing, that does not negate the power of the court to suspend or limit your license. The DMV has separate powers over your license from the courts, and neither power can dictate the other’s decision. Winning your DMV hearing is a good step towards keeping your license valid and your defense attorney’s main goal will be to preserve your rights.
What Happens If You Lose Your Hearing?
For a first-time offender, the license will be suspended for at least 30 days. The offender will also be required to take an alcohol class and the license will be reinstated on a limited basis after fees are paid. For second-time offenders who get a repeat DUI within 10 years, your licensed will be suspended for one year, no exceptions. There are no temporary licenses or restricted licenses available at this time. If the offender repeats their DUI for a third time within 10 years, the license will be suspended for three years. After 18 months and completion of counseling, the license may be reinstated with restrictions, but a breath ignition lock must be installed on all vehicles. The offender will only be allowed to drive to work. When you have a skilled lawyer on your side, you’ll be able to tackle the most difficult DMV hearings and prevail over the officers who testify against you. Our office has experience in defeating DUI charges and keeping our clients’ privilege to drive.