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DMV Hearings and DUI Arrests in California

Posted on in DUI

DMV hearing, San Jose DUI defense attorney, DUI arrests, California DUI law, drivers license suspensionCalifornia has some of the toughest and most strict DUI laws in the country, including a provision that allows the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to suspend or revoke a person’s driving privileges after he or she is arrested for a DUI under certain conditions. In California, this license suspension program is called Admin Per Se (APS) and is independent of any other fines, jail time, or other criminal penalty administered by the courts if you are convicted of a DUI.

Admin Per Se License Suspensions

The DMV is required to revoke or suspend the driving privileges of any person who is arrested for DUI and:

  • Takes a chemical test to determine his or her blood alcohol content (BAC) and is determined to have a BAC over .08 if he or she is driving a non-commercial vehicle; or

  • Refuses to take a chemical test to determine his or her BAC.

If you fall under either of those situations, the arresting police officer will issue you an Order of Suspension, confiscate your license, and send it to the DMV. You have 30 days after the date the suspension was issued before the suspension goes into effect.

DMV Hearings

If you are given an Order of Suspension, you have 10 days after receiving the order to request a hearing with the DMV to challenge the suspension. If you do not request an in-person hearing, then your hearing will be conducted over the phone. The DMV hearing is not a criminal hearing and will not determine whether or not you are guilty of a criminal offense. Rather, the DMV hearing focuses on the circumstances surrounding the arrest.

At the DMV hearing, you have the right to:

  • Be represented by a lawyer;
  • Review and challenge evidence; and
  • Present evidence, witnesses, and testimony.

Because the DMV hearing is not a criminal hearing, the issues that will be discussed at the hearing include:

  • Whether or not the officer had reasonable cause to believe you were in violation of DUI laws;
  • Whether or not you were lawfully detained or arrested;
  • If you were driving a motor vehicle with a BAC of over .08;
  • If applicable, whether or not you were told about the consequences of refusing the chemical test; and
  • If you refused the chemical test after being instructed by the police officer to submit to one.

Get Help From an Aggressive Santa Clara County DUI Defense Lawyer

If you have been arrested for DUI, the best thing you can do for yourself is to hire a passionate and experienced San Jose DUI defense attorney. License suspensions can sometimes cause you extreme hardship and make it difficult for you to get yourself to work or school. The Law Offices of Erik Steven Johnson can help you protect your right to drive. To schedule a consultation, call the office at 408-246-3004.


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