Will I Lose My License After a DUI?

Driving under the influence, DUI, is a serious charge and a conviction carries stiff penalties. Immediately upon your arrest, you may need to surrender your driver’s license and will temporarily lose your driving privileges. There are two sides to a DUI arrest. DUI charges will be handled in court while the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) will handle your driver’s license.  Within ten days of being arrested for DUI you will typically have your license suspended until the DUI matter is settled in court. Some drivers don’t know they have only ten days to request a hearing about their driver’s license. This hearing is with the FLHSMV (Florida DMV) and will determine whether you’ll be allowed driving privileges.

DMV Hearing

The purpose of the hearing is to decide whether or not you will keep any type of driving privileges until your DUI is handled in court. If you don’t request a hearing within ten days of your DUI arrest you automatically waive your right to the hearing and your license will be suspended until your court date. If you need to drive, for example to get to your job, it is necessary to request a hearing. An experienced attorney will be able to help in this process. Your lawyer will present your case by demonstrating your need to retain your license and will offer details as to your lack of previous DUI convictions, good standing in the community, and work record as ways to indicate responsibility. Sometimes, a driver may be allowed to keep his or her license.

Can I Get a Hardship License?

A hardship driver’s license is a type of restricted license that allows you to drive for specific purposes. A hardship license may give you permission to drive to and from work only. This lets you to keep your source of income but restricts you from driving at other times. If you have a job and your license has been suspended it could be hard to get to and from work and your employment could be in jeopardy. Your lawyer will be able to request a hearing for a hardship license. This requires a special hearing where you lawyer will present information detailing why you should be allowed to have a restricted license. If allowed a hardship license, you will only be allowed to drive under for specific reasons.

DUI Resolution

Of course, obtaining a restricted or hardship driver’s license is only a short-term resolution to the situation. The final determination of your driver’s license will be decided by a judge in court. If you are found guilty of DUI, the judge will impose a sentence that will often include penalties such as jail time, fines, and suspension of your driver’s license. In Florida, depending on circumstances,  there are mandatory sentencing requirements that may require an automatic suspension of your license. An experienced DUI lawyer will assist you in resolving your case with the best possible results.