Administrative License Suspension
A person arrested for DUI likely has a long list of concerns about their future. After any time has been served and fines have been paid, he or she will most likely still have to contend with an administrative driver's license suspension. Since many people depend on their vehicle to function in daily life, from commuting to their place of employment, school, and other essential activities, the loss of driving privilege can have serious consequences.Jacksonville Driver's License Suspension Hearing Lawyer
After an arrest for a DUI, you have 10 days in which to request a hearing with the Florida Department of Highway and Motor Vehicles to combat the administrative license suspension. Bill Roelke, an experienced DUI lawyer in Jacksonville, represents men and women in all aspects of their DUI case, including administrative matters. His technical background in science and psychology also provides him with a great insight into the science behind testing, which can address inconsistencies and reveal any errors. This can help weaken the evidence and get your suspension reversed.
Call (904) 354-0333 or send an online message to discuss your case with Bill Roelke. Because he never applies a one-size-fits-all approach to strategy, working closely with you to understand your unique situation during a free consultation can help the groundwork for hearing. However, you only have a short period of time in which to request a hearing and obtain any representation in Duval County. Contact Roelke Law as soon as you can to begin forming a strategy to protect your driving privileges.
Florida Administrative License Suspension Information Center
- Driver License Revocation Periods in Florida
- Administrative License Suspension for Drivers under the Age of 21
- Administrative Disqualification Law for Commercial Vehicle Drivers in Florida
- Review Hearings for Administrative Suspensions / Disqualifications
- Florida Hardship License Prohibition
In Florida, the administrative license suspension periods for a DUI vary depending on the state of refusal and frequency of the charge. Under Florida's Administrative Suspension Laws (§ 322.2615, F.S., s. 316.193, F.S., s. 316.1932, F.S.), the license revocation periods are as follows:
- First DUI Suspension (.08 or above): 6 months
- Second or Subsequent Suspensions for DUI (.08 or above): 1 year
- First Suspension for Refusal to Submit to Test: 1 year
- Second or Subsequent Suspensions for Refusal: 18 months
These suspension periods are effective immediately upon arrest. However, if the driver is eligible, the officer will issue a 10-day temporary driving permit.
For underage drivers who are arrested with a blood alcohol content level of .02 or above, the license suspension process is slightly different. F.S. 322.2616, authorizes law enforcement officers who have probably cause to believe that a driver under the age of 21 who is driving or in actual physical control of a vehicle is under the influence of alcohol (or any alcohol level) to detain the driver. The law enforcement officer may also request that the driver submit to a test in order to determine alcohol level. However, unlike DUI for adults, this detainment does not constitute an arrest and a violation is not a traffic violation or criminal offense.
License suspension periods for drivers under the age of 21 are as follows:
- First Suspension with BAC of .02 or above: 6 months
- Second or Subsequent Suspensions: 1 year.
- First Suspension for Refusal to Submit to Breath Testing: 1 year
- Second or Subsequent Suspensions for Refusal to Submit: 18 months
Note that these suspensions are immediately effective, though eligible drivers may be issued a 10-day temporary permit by the law enforcement officer. Additionally, if the BAC level is .05 or higher, the suspension remains in effect until the individual completes a substance abuse evaluation and course. If the breath or blood alcohol level is .05 or higher the suspension shall remain in effect until completion of a substance abuse evaluation and course.
Commercial drivers are subject to different requirements in the suspension of their commercial driver's licenses. The time periods in which they are disqualified from obtaining a commercial driver license are:
- First Disqualification (.04 or above BAC): 1 year disqualification
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance: 1 year disqualification
- First Disqualification for Refusal to Submit to Testing: 1 year disqualification
- Second or Subsequent Disqualification for Refusal to Submit: permanent disqualification
- Second or Subsequent Disqualification of DUI: permanent disqualification
These disqualifications are effective immediately if the driver has a BAC of .08 or higher or refused to take the blood, breath, or urine test. The officer can issue a 10 day temporary driving permit if the driver is eligible. This permit can be used after the first 24 hours of disqualification.
Sections s. 322.2615 and s. 322.64 of the Florida Statutes authorize the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHMV) to conduct formal and informal reviews for the purpose of evaluating administrative suspensions and disqualifications. However, this decision is separate from the criminal case and will not be considered in a DUI criminal trial. Written statements submitted by the accused person will not be admitted into criminal trial evidence. Conversely, the decision of a criminal trial will not affect a suspension or disqualification.
There are two types of administrative license suspension hearings in Florida: a formal and informal hearing. In a formal administrative license review, the individual is allowed to present and cross examine witnesses. The decision for a formal review hearing is made within 7 days of the hearing. During an informal administrative license review, the hearing officer examines any evidence or material submitted by the accused or law officer in order to determine if the suspension was justified by sufficient evidence. Witness testimony, evidence, or cross examination is not allowed.
Many people choose to hire an attorney for these review hearings for many reasons. If your attorney is representing you in the criminal side as well, there is invaluable evidence and prosecution strategies that can be revealed, which can benefit your later criminal trial. Additionally, the standard of evidence is different during an administrative hearing. Rather than need to prove beyond a reasonable doubt, the standard is a preponderance of evidence. In other words, you must prove that you more than likely were not driving a vehicle while intoxicated. An experienced DUI lawyer can best help in this regard.
While some people find themselves eligible to apply for a hardship license after their driver license has been suspended, there are certain cases where the license will not be granted. Hardship reinstatements are not allowed for individuals facing their 2nd or subsequent DUI for test refusal. People who have been disqualified from operating a commercial vehicle also cannot obtain a hardship license to operate a commercial motor vehicle.
Roelke Law, P.A. | Driver License Suspension Hearing in Jacksonville, FL
If you are facing an administrative license suspension hearing, contact Roelke Law today. During your free consultation, Bill Roelke will help determine the strength of your case and begin setting the foundation for your case. Unlike the criminal trial, you have nothing to lose during an administrative hearing. It is in your best interests to consider all of your options.
Roelke Law represents clients in Duval County, Clay County, St. Johns County, and Nassau County, Florida. This includes Jacksonville, Atlantic Beach, Baldwin, St. Augustine, Orange Park, Green Cove Springs, Fernandina Beach, Hilliard, and nearby areas. Call Roelke Law to learn more about your case and license suspension in the greater Jacksonville area.