One of the first questions many people have after a Dallas drunk driving arrest is, “Am I going to lose my driver’s license?” It is no wonder this is a common concern, since so much of our lives revolves around driving — going to work, the grocery store, the doctor, and taking our children to school.
Not being able to drive for three months or more could have a major impact on your ability to work, maintain personal relationships, and even attend court-ordered events. Luckily, you may be able to keep driving despite a driving while intoxicated (DWI) arrest.
At the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg, a DMV hearing lawyer in Dallas can help you request a hearing to fight your administrative license suspension and represent your rights during that hearing. It is important to act quickly, though. Contact us as soon as possible after a Dallas DWI arrest, and let us get to work fighting for you.
How does the administrative license revocation work after a Dallas DWI?
When the police arrested you for DWI in Dallas, they likely took your driver’s license and instead gave you a temporary permit to use in its place. This occurred because of an automatic administrative license suspension following a DWI arrest. This administrative license revocation (ALR) is not related to any of the criminal proceedings in your case but instead happens automatically through the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Although many people believe the Department of Motor Vehicles handles driver’s licenses, this is not the case. In Texas, the Department of Public Safety (DPS) handles license testing, issuing, and revocations.
You only have 15 days from the day of your arrest to challenge the administrative license revocation by requesting a hearing with an administrative law judge (ALJ) at the Department of Public Safety.
This is why you need to call us as soon as possible after your arrest, so we can get to work on your case and ensure your rights remain intact. We will file a request for your ALR hearing, and the Department of Public Safety will send us a response with a date, time, and location for the hearing.
What happens at a Dallas DPS hearing?
We represent you during your Dallas DPS hearing, protecting your rights and giving you the best shot at keeping your driver’s license. At the hearing, the ALJ hears the evidence the DPS has against you, and then we present our defense to these accusations. We might argue that the entire case be thrown out because of invalid evidence or an illegal stop.
The ALJ considers both sides and attempts to determine the strength of the DPS case against you. If the ALJ has serious questions about your guilt, she may not grant the license suspension.
If she believes you drove while intoxicated based on the evidence presented in the hearing, she will likely authorize the suspension of your license. You may or may not learn the ALJ’s decision the day of the DPS hearing. In some cases, we may be able to appeal a decision that does not go in our favor.
What happens if I do not request a DPS hearing?
If you do not meet the deadline to request a hearing, your driver’s license suspension begins 40 days following your arrest. The length of time the suspension lasts depends on the nature of your arrest and how long DPS decides.
In most cases, first-time DWI offenders who tested over .08 on a breath or blood test will receive an ALR of at least 90 days. If you refused the chemical test, you will receive a suspension of 180 days. If you have previous DWI arrests, the length of your ALR may be significantly longer.
What if the administrative law judge upholds my Dallas license suspension?
Even if the ALJ revokes your driver’s license, we may be able to help you qualify for an occupational license during your suspension period. We can help you take the steps to keep your essential driving privileges, including commuting to work, school, and other necessary trips.
An occupational license is the only way you can legally continue driving after an ALR. It requires filing a petition with the courts to show you have an essential need to drive, such as needing to go to work or go grocery shopping to feed your family. The only way DPS will allow you to receive an occupational license is if the court approves your petition.
Why do I need a DMV hearing lawyer in Dallas?
Your driver’s license and the privileges it gives you are an essential part of your life. Not having a license for three months to two years could seriously affect your ability to make a living and pay your bills. We understand this, and do everything in our power to protect your driving privileges while we defend you from the fallout of a Dallas DWI arrest.
In addition to giving us a chance to preserve your driving privileges, the administrative license revocation hearing gives us our first glimpse at the evidence the prosecution may present in your criminal case.
In this way, we can use this hearing as an investigative tool. We will hear the arresting officer’s story for the first time, and learn about potential weaknesses in his case against you. This, of course, is important in helping us build a stronger defense for your criminal trial.
Protect your future. Call a Dallas DWI lawyer today.
At the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg, our team knows the vital role your driver’s license plays in your ability to attend school, commute to work, and maintain your quality of life. We fight to protect your driving privileges, both in the DPS hearing and during a criminal trial, if necessary. Call us today at 214-696-9253 to schedule a time to discuss your case with Dallas DWI lawyer Randall B. Isenberg.