Georgia DUI – Administrative License Suspension
The law imposes serious consequences and penalties for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs in the State of Georgia. Whether you are arrested for a DUI in Georgia because your BAC exceeded the legal limit or you refused to submit to a blood, breath or urine test, the arresting officer will issue a DDS (Department of Driver Services) Form 1205. While the Form 1205 will serve as your 30-day temporary driving permit, it also serves as notice of the State’s intention to suspend your license.
The suspension of your license is an administrative proceeding that will take place separate and apart from the criminal court proceedings you will be facing. To put it simply, in Georgia, DUI offenders are subject to both administrative sanctions (e.g. the loss of your license) and criminal penalties which include significant monetary fines and jail time. As an experienced Thomasville and Valdosta DUI lawyer, Gus Soto will thoroughly explain how the administrative and criminal proceedings operate and make certain that your legal rights are protected every step of the way.
Georgia’s 10-Day Rule - Requesting Administrative Review
When you are arrested for a DUI in Georgia, you have the right to request a hearing to challenge the administrative suspension of your driver’s license. It is important to understand that you will have to act quickly if you plan to appeal your license suspension. The state only gives you 10 business days from the date of your DUI arrest to file a hearing request with the Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS). If you fail to send your request letter to the DDS within the 10-day time limit, you will not be able to fight the suspension and your driver’s license will be automatically suspended.
DUI defense attorney Gus Soto is prepared to assist you throughout the entire administrative process. He will prepare and file your request letter with the Georgia DDS. After your request is filed, you can generally expect for your license suspension hearing to take place before the State Office of Administrative Hearings within 30 to 90 days. During this time the DDS will provide you with an extension of your temporary driving permit which will allow you to continue driving until your administrative hearing is held. While you may feel as if your situation is hopeless, you should not give up. Many defenses are available in DUI cases and Attorney Soto will undertake a thorough investigation of your arrest to identify all defenses that may be available to you.
If you choose not to file a request for administrative review within the 10-day time limit, your license will be suspended. If this is your first DUI offense, your license can be suspended for up to one year. You may, however, be able to reinstate your license after 120 days if you meet the State’s requirements which include the completion of a DUI, Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction Program and payment of a reinstatement fee.
Georgia Limited Driving Permit
If this is your first DUI offense and you are over the age of 21, you will generally be permitted to apply for a limited driving permit provided that you did not refuse to submit to a chemical test in connection with your DUI arrest. A limited driving permit will allow you to drive for very restricted purposes, including to and from work, school, medical care (including picking up prescriptions), substance abuse treatment and court appearances. This permit will also allow you to drive immediate family members who do not hold a driver’s license to work, school, medical appointments and to pick up prescriptions. If this is your second DUI conviction, you may also be eligible to apply for a limited driving permit but you will have to wait 120 days and must meet specific conditions under the State’s DUI laws.
Discuss Your DUI with an Experienced Attorney Today
If you have been charged with a DUI in Valdosta, Thomasville or any other location in southern Georgia, it is important to discuss your situation with a skilled DUI defense lawyer immediately. Attorney Gus Soto has an in-depth understanding of the many complex issues involved in Georgia DUI cases. He offers free consultations where he will review your case to determine the best avenues available to fight your charges. Contact Attorney Soto today at 1-888-440-7686.