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DUI Related Drivers License Suspensions

When charged with DUI there are often two types of suspensions that have to be dealt with. The first type of suspension is called an Admin Per Se Suspension. This suspension is sometimes referred to as an administrative suspension. Ordinarily when a person is arrested for DUI, the arresting officer will require that the arrestee submit to a chemical test of either their blood, breath or urine. If that test yields an alcohol concentration of .08 percent or greater, then that information will then be reported to the Department of Motor Vehicles, who will then initiate suspension proceedings.

The Admin Per Se Suspension is a 90-day suspension; however, most drivers will be eligible for a restricted permit after the first 30 days of the suspension are served. Once the restricted license is issued, the person is allowed to drive to and from work, school and medical appointments. It is important to note that the administrative suspension is completely separate from the underlying DUI criminal case whether it is in Scottsdale or Phoenix. The administrative DUI suspension is handled entirely by MVD and the decisions of the MVD Hearing Officer have no binding effect on the prosecutor or judge assigned to the criminal DUI case.

It is also important to note that unless one requests an administrative hearing with MVD on a timely basis that the Admin Per Se Suspension will go into effect automatically after 15 days and the right to have a hearing will be forfeited. It is important to request a hearing not only because it postpones the imposition of the suspension, but the hearing process itself can also be an invaluable tool to the DUI defense attorney handling your DUI case, insofar as it requires the arresting officer to appear at the hearing and submit to cross-examination under oath and on the record. If the hearing results in the suspension being upheld, MVD will typically agree to postpone the commencement of the suspension until 45 days after the hearing.

The second type of suspension related to a DUI case is referred to as a Points Suspension. Under Arizona law if a driver accumulates 8 or more points during any 12-month period, MVD may initiate suspension proceedings regardless of whether the points have anything to do with a DUI offense. While speeding typically carries a 3-point assessment and most other traffic violations carry a 2 point assessment, DUI unfortunately carries 8 points by itself. This means that even if a person has nothing else on their driving record, if they are convicted of any DUI offense, they will automatically have a minimum of 8 points and be subject to further penalties through the Motor Vehicle Division.

The good news is that so long as a person does not acquire more than 11 points during a 12 month period, MVD will typically allow the driver to complete an 8-hour Traffic Survival School (TSS) in lieu of having Points Suspension imposed. Unfortunately, if 12 or more points are accumulated during any 12-month period, then Traffic Survival School is no longer an option and MVD will typically impose a second suspension that will run a minimum of 90 days. It is for this reason that DUI officers typically add as many civil traffic violations as possible when citing someone for DUI.

If you have had your license suspended due to a DUI, then you need to contact a DUI attorney at the Law Offices of Joshua S. Davidson today.