DMV Hearings Lawyer in Los Angeles
The DMV Admin Per Se process is often confusing to many people, especially those facing a first time DUI.
If you’ve been arrested for DUI in Los Angeles or anywhere else in the state of California, the arresting officer will confiscate your license. This is the beginning of the suspension process that accompanies most California DUIs.
You will be issued a temporary license, which is good for thirty days. It will then be incumbent on you to schedule a DMV hearing to contest the impending suspension within 10 days from the date of your arrest. If you fail to schedule a hearing, the state will move forward with the automatic suspension of your driver’s license.
DMV Hearing vs. Criminal Trial
It’s important to remember that being charged with a DUI has two completely separate aspects that must be dealt with: the Court and the DMV. Unlike the criminal process at Court, the DMV is a civil matter, run by their Office of Driver Safety.
The DMV hearing officer acts as both judge and prosecutor in this procedure. They are only interested in three issues:
- Did the arresting officer have reasonable cause to believe that you were driving under the influence;
- Was the arrest lawful, and;
- Was your blood alcohol level at a .08 or higher at the time of driving, based on a properly administered chemical test?
How a DUI Defense Attorney Represents You in a DMV Hearing
If you’ve been arrested for a DUI in Los Angeles, it’s in your best interest to retain the services of an experienced California criminal defense lawyer. All experienced DUI attorneys are aware of the DMV hearing process and impending deadlines. The DMV hearing process is essentially won or lost based upon technical issues that only experienced attorneys used to dealing with the DMV can raise and argue for you.
Keep in mind that your attorney must request your hearing within 10 days of the date the arresting officer gave you the Notice of Suspension and temporary driving license. If you fail to request the hearing within that time, the DMV is not obligated to schedule the hearing before the temporary driver’s license expires and you lose your driving privileges.
Also, since strategy in scheduling the DMV hearing is an important part of successfully defending your driving privilege, you should obtain an attorney to represent you as quickly as possible so that he or she will be the person who contacts the DMV to request the hearing.
In some ways, the DMV’s punishment is even harsher than the court’s, since the DMV will actually suspend your driving privilege for four months if you fail to request the hearing or do not successfully defend it.
Although the Temporary license and notice of suspension that was given to you at the time of arrest say that your license will expire in thirty days, when the attorney requests an Admin Per Se hearing, he can also request a stay of the suspension pending the outcome of the hearing. This can easily add months to the time you can continue to drive legally, unrestricted and not suspended.
Again, it’s worth repeating that the DMV Admin Per Se hearing process is a highly technical procedure. You’ll want to find a lawyer with the specific skills and experience necessary to challenge the Department’s case against your driving privilege.
Temporary Driver’s License
If you’ve never been arrested for a DUI before, you may be confused about what your temporary driver’s license allows you to do. For all intents and purposes, the temporary license you’re issued at the time of your arrest or by the DMV acts as a full driver’s license. The license will expire after 30 days from the date of your arrest unless your attorney is able to get you an extension.
Contact an LA DMV Hearing Attorney Today
DUI arrests can be complicated matters. In addition to analyzing the charges against you and developing a solid case, there’s also the matter of defending your driving privileges. If you’ve been charged with a DUI in Los Angeles, you may be facing jail, fines, a criminal record, and unfortunately, the suspension or revocation of your California driver’s license. It’s essential that you retain the services of a criminal defense lawyer with extensive experience in DUIs. Contact C. Robert Brooks, Attorney at Law to schedule a free initial consultation.