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California's Drivers License Suspension Laws

California DUI laws and the penaltiesCalifornia drivers arrested for a driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, in violation of California Vehicle Code section 23152, often are unaware of the relationship between the arrest, the California Department of Motor Vehicles, and their driver's licenses. DUI arrests in California trigger two separate cases - in criminal court, and at the California DMV. Losing either case can result in a driver’s license suspension.

California DUI Arrest FAQ's

I've just been arrested for DUI. What happens now?

California police or Highway Patrol (CHP) officer is required by law to immediately forward a copy of the completed notice of suspension or revocation form and any driver license taken into possession, with a sworn report to the California DMV. The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) automatically conducts an administrative review that includes an examination of the officer's report, the suspension or revocation order, and any test results. If the suspension or revocation is upheld during the administrative review, you may request a hearing to contest the suspension or revocation.

You have the right to request a hearing from the DMV within 10 days of receipt of the Notice of Suspension or Revocation order. If the review shows there is no basis for the suspension or revocation, the action will be set aside. You will be notified by the DMV in writing only if the suspension or revocation is set aside following the administrative review.

Note: A DMV hearing is available only if a request has been made by you or on your behalf within ten (10) days of the DUI arrest.

The officer issued me an Order of Suspension and Temporary License. What am I supposed to do with this document?

You may drive for 30 days from the date the order of suspension or revocation was issued, provided you have been issued a California driver license and your driver license is not expired, or your driving privilege is not suspended or revoked for some other reason.

The California Highway Patrol or police officer seized my driver license at the time of the DUI arrest. How do I get my license back?

A California driver’s license will be returned at the end of the suspension or revocation provided the licensee pays a $125 reissue fee to the DMV and files proof of financial responsibility. Additionally, a person arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) will have their driver license returned prior to the end of any suspension if the licensee is eligible and applies for a restricted driver’s license prior to the completion of the suspension. In order to obtain a restricted driver’s license, the licensee must enroll in an appropriate and approved driving under the influence (DUI) school, pay a $125 reissue fee to the DMV and file proof of financial responsibility.

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Most drivers pay their insurance company to provide the required proof of financial responsibility to the Department of Motor Vehicles. If the driver’s insurance company continues to insure the licensee, an increase of premium and fee for filing the SR-22 form with the DMV can be anticipated.

The reissue fee is $100 if the driver was under age 21 and was suspended under the Zero Tolerance Law (no driving with any measurable amount of alcohol in the system) pursuant to Vehicle Code §§23136, 13353.1, 13388, 13392. If it is determined that there was no for the suspension or revocation, the driver license will be issued or returned to the licensee.

For how long will my driving privilege be suspended if I took the chemical test?

If the driver was 21 years of age or older and took a blood or breath test with the results of BAC of 0.08% or more; The first DUI offense will result in a four (4) month suspension; A second or subsequent DUI offense within 10 years will result in a one (1) year driver's license suspension.

Do I need to have a DMV hearing in order to obtain a restricted license?

A request for a restricted license cannot be considered by the Hearing Officer at the Department of Motor Vehicles hearing. A person who had a driving under the influence action sustained may apply for a restricted license to drive to and from work, or school at any California DMV field office

How long will my driving privilege be suspended if I did not take a chemical test?

If a person is 21 years or older at the time of the DUI arrest and refused to take a chemical test:

  • A first offense will result in a one (1) year suspension.
  • A second offense within ten (10) years will result in a two (2) year revocation.
  • A third or subsequent offense within ten (10) years will result in a three (3) year revocation.

If a person was less than 21 years of age at the time of the DUI arrest and refused or failed to complete a preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) test or other chemical test:

  • A first offense will result in a one (1) year suspension.
  • A second offense within ten (10) years will result in a two (2) year revocation.
  • A third or subsequent offense within ten (10) years will result in a three (3) year revocation.

How is the Department of Motor Vehicles suspension or revocation for a DUI different from the suspension or revocation following my conviction in criminal court?

The DMV suspension or revocation is an administrative action taken against your driving privilege only. The suspension or revocation following a conviction in court is a mandatory action for which jail, fine, or other criminal penalty can be imposed.

In California, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs invites stiff penalties, fines and punishment. For that reason, it is imperative that you have a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer handling your DUI case from the very beginning. The Law Office of Edward Shkolnikov handles cases in both State court and Federal Court throughout California.

Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney Edward Shkolnikov will provide you with time, preparation, respect, and persistence you should expect when you hire a criminal defense attorney. Trusted and respected by judges and prosecutors, Edward Shkolnikov takes DUI cases to jury trial and negotiates deals that often save peoples’ licenses, careers and freedom. He practices DUI law extensively in the Beverly Hills, LAX, Metropolitan and Torrance Courthouses as well as San Fernando Valley courts.

If you need a California criminal defense attorney you can trust The Law Office of Edward Shkolnikov to do everything for you, guidance you should expect to get the best possible result.

The information on this Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney - Law Offices of Edward Shkolnikov website is for general information purposes only. The information on this website should not be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. The information on this website does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.

Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney - Law Offices of Edward Shkolnikov
13245 Riverside Dr., Suite 501, Sherman Oaks, CA 91423
Phone: 323.655.6005; Fax: 323.655.6030; Email: Attorney@Shkolnikovlaw.com

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