Many people know that they might lose their license for a DWI conviction in Texas. But, did you know that you could lose your license even if the court dismisses your charges or a jury exonerates you?
A DMV hearing, held separately from the criminal side of a DWI case, provides you with one opportunity to argue against license suspension. Having a DMV hearing lawyer in Rockwall to fight on your behalf gives you the chance to fight to keep your license. Talk to a Rockwall DMV hearing attorney today at the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg: 214-696-9253.
Why Do I Have to Attend a DMV Hearing?
In Rockwall, drunk driving charges involve both a criminal and an administrative action. The criminal aspect of your case goes through the court system, where you face your charges, enter a plea, and potentially go to trial.
The DMV hearing is the administrative or civil component of your case, where an administrative law judge will determine whether you lose your driver’s license for a period of months or years.
The Texas Department of Public Safety (TxDPS) oversees the DMV proceeding, officially called an Administrative License Revocation (ALR) hearing. That means that TxDPS could suspend your license even if the prosecutor dismisses your DWI charges or a jury declares you not guilty of drunk driving.
Why Do I Need a DMV Hearing Lawyer in Rockwall?
Nothing in the statutes states that you must have an attorney to represent you at the DMV hearing — you are free to represent yourself.
However, having a DMV hearing lawyer to represent you could make a significant difference in the outcome of your ALR proceeding as well as your criminal case.
Your DMV hearing lawyer will handle your request to schedule the ALR proceeding and follow up to ensure you do not miss the deadline — which would lead to an automatic suspension of your license.
Your lawyer will ensure the protection of your legal rights before, during, and after the DMV hearing. You will give testimony under oath during the ALR proceeding, as will the arresting officer and anyone else with information relating directly to your case. Your attorney can prepare you before the hearing and object to any questions that may induce you to incriminate yourself or harm your criminal case.
Because your lawyer will also have the opportunity to question the arresting officer under oath, this can provide an invaluable glimpse of how strong the prosecutor’s case against you might be. Your lawyer can also use this proceeding to identify potential weaknesses or holes in the criminal case, and use those to your advantage.
Perhaps most important, your DMV hearing lawyer has the knowledge and experience you need to build a strong case to keep your license. Without it, you have no way to get to work or meet any of life’s everyday obligations.
If the judge does move to suspend your license after the ALR proceedings, your lawyer can make a case for granting you an occupational license. This will allow you to legally drive to work or school, go to medical appointments, and handle necessary personal errands such as grocery shopping.
How Does a DMV Hearing Process Work?
When you obtain a Texas driver’s license, you agree to certain provisions related to driving while intoxicated (DWI).
Specifically, you agree to not drive while intoxicated and to submit to a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test any time the police request one. If you violate the agreement, TxDPS has the exclusive right to suspend your driver’s license.
If you get pulled over by the police, an officer will take steps to establish probable cause for requesting a BAC test. Typically, the police use either a roadside breath testing device or a field sobriety test.
Once the police establish probable cause, they initiate the ALR process.
The police will confiscate your license and present you with a form called DIC-25 Notice of Suspension and Temporary Driving Permit. This document gives you permission to drive for the subsequent 15 days. During that time, you must contact TxDPS to schedule your DMV hearing; otherwise, TxDPS will suspend your license.
Scheduling your DMV hearing in Rockwall requires making the request by mail, fax, or by filling out a web form on the TxDPS website. TxDPS then confirms the date and time by mail.
Unfortunately, if you made any mistakes when completing the form or if TxDPS fails to receive your request, you will have missed the deadline and given up your right to your DMV hearing.
What Happens at the DMV Hearing?
DMV hearings for Rockwall DWIs take place before an administrative law judge at the Dallas Field Office of the Office of Administrative Hearings.
The judge will call the hearing to order and swear in the participants. The arresting officer will present testimony, as will any other parties who have evidence against you. Next, you will present any testimony in your defense.
If you have a DMV hearing lawyer, your attorney will question the police officer and others who present testimony. Your lawyer can also assist you during the process, to ensure you do not present any incriminating testimony. If you do, the prosecutor can use that information against you during your trial.
You will receive the judge’s decision about your case by mail at a later date.
Meet with a Rockwall DMV Hearing Lawyer for No Charge
When you have a DMV hearing lawyer to represent you, you give yourself a good chance of keeping your license or obtaining a provisional license. Otherwise, you may lose your license for as long as two years.
Randall B. Isenberg has worked for over 30 years as a DWI lawyer, felony prosecutor, and state judge. Using that insight, Attorney Isenberg will fight tirelessly for you during the ALR hearing as well as your criminal trial.
You can schedule a free case review with a Texas DWI lawyer to learn more about the ALR hearing process. Contact the Law Offices of Randall B. Isenberg today at 214-696-9253 to learn more about how a DMV hearing lawyer in Rockwall can help you keep your driver’s license.