DUI License Suspension Attorney in Athens
Has Your Driver’s License Been Suspended After an Arrest?
Many people don’t realize that just the act of being arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) will result in the automatic loss of your license—unless you take immediate action to contest it. This is possible because driving is regarded as a privilege by the state, and the Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS) has the authority to impose penalties on your license if you fail the breath test or refuse to take it altogether.
Find out more about driver license suspensions by calling (706) 705-5122 and speaking with our Athens DUI lawyer.
What You Need to Know Regarding Georgia’s Updated License Suspension Laws
Under Georgia law, you have 3 options when facing suspension of your driver’s license. You can either do nothing, appeal the suspension, or apply for an ignition interlock device limited permit (IIDLP). If you do nothing, your license will be automatically suspended 46 days after you are served with the DS-1205 form. If you appeal, your license and driving privileges will be pending until after the hearing is concluded.
However, if you apply for an IIDLP, you will be able to drive for certain reasons in a vehicle that has the ignition interlock device installed. You must take the vehicle to the ignition interlock provider every month for inspections. The IIDLP will be issued by the Georgia DDS, and you must request it within 30 days of being served with the DS-1205 form. If you refused to submit to the state administered chemical testing at the time of your arrest, you will have to use the ignition interlock device for 1 year. However, if you submitted to the chemical testing, you may only have to use the device for 4 months, depending on the situation.
Your ability to choose these 3 options depends on various factors:
- Your driving record
- Your age
- Your license status
If you are over 21, have never been arrested and charged with a DUI (or have not been convicted within the past 5 years), and have a valid Georgia driver’s license, you may choose from all 3 options. However, if you are under 21, do not have a valid Georgia driver’s license, or have been convicted of a DUI in the past 5 years, you will only be able to do nothing or appeal the suspension. At our firm, we help clients understand their situation and what they can do under Georgia law to try to avoid license suspension.
If you want to discuss your options with our knowledgeable Athens DUI attorney, contact us today.
You Have 30 Days to Appeal Your License Suspension
When you are arrested for DUI, the officer will provide you with a yellow DS-1205 form that explains your pending suspension and serves as a temporary driving permit. The instructions will inform you that you have only 30 business days from the date of your arrest to submit a hearing request to the DDS. If you miss this deadline by even one day, you will lose any chance of contesting your license suspension.
If your request is granted, your hearing will be scheduled and your driving permit will be extended for 90 days until the hearing is resolved. At your hearing, you or your attorney must establish that your suspension is invalid.
Below are some common reasons a suspension may be overturned:
- Failure to inform you of the Implied Consent warning for breathalyzer tests
- Lack of probable cause for a DUI arrest
- The arresting officer does not show up for court during your hearing
Submitting Your License Suspension Appeal Letter
To appeal your license suspension, you must request an administrative hearing with the DDS. When you were arrested for DUI, the police more than likely provided you with a yellow form (known as the DS-1205) that explained your license suspension and how to appeal it. Providing all of the information listed on the form is critical to securing a hearing for your appeal.
Information that must be included in this letter includes:
- Full name
- Current address
- Driver's license number
- Phone number
- Date of birth
- Your attorney's name, address, and phone number
- A cash, check, or money order for $150
Sending the letter via certified mail is highly recommended, so you have proof that the DDS received your letter and that it arrived before the 30-day deadline. You may also pay the filing fee by debit or credit card.
An Athens DUI Attorney Can Help with the Administrative Hearing
Administrative license suspension hearings are notoriously difficult to win, which is why having an experienced lawyer on your side is critical. Attorney Lee Webb has helped a number of clients successfully appeal their license suspension since 1995, so they could minimize the impact that a DUI arrest had on their lives.
To get started on your license suspension appeal, call (706) 705-5122 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.