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DUI and License Suspensions


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Is my license suspended?

What happens if I proceed with a Formal Review of my DUI suspension?

Does my license get suspended twice?

Why should I hire a DUI lawyer?

When should I hire a lawyer?





Q: Is my license suspended?

Under Florida law, your license will be suspended if you are arrested for driving under the influence and a)  you have a breath, blood, or urine sample over .08; or b) you refuse to provide a breath, blood, or urine sample.

The officer is to hand you a temporary permit (usually in the form of the ticket or citation) that allows you to drive for a 10-day period.  This time allows you to seek a right of review with the DHSMV.  This can be done with a formal or informal review.


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Q: What happens if I proceed with a Formal Review of my DUI suspension?

If you decide to exercise your right to proceed with a formal review, the Hearing Officer may either validate or invalidate the DHSMV's suspension of your license.

If the suspension is invalidated, then your license will be reinstated as it was before the DUI suspension.  You should be able to drive if your license was not subject to other suspension, once you get it reinstated.  However, your license will be suspended again, if you are convicted of DUI.

If the suspension is validated, then your suspension continues.  You will not be eligible to apply for a temporary work permit until after a certain time period has elapsed following your last driving permit and you have taken and successfully completed DUI school.  If you blew over .08, then you must wait 30 days before applying for the temporary work permit.  If you refused to blow, you must wait 90 days.


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Q: Does my license get suspended twice?

If you are arrested for DUI, your license will automatically be suspended. But you have a Right of Review to try and get it reinstated.  This suspension is separate and apart from the suspension that occurs once you close your case and receive a conviction for DUI.

Even if your license is reinstated, once you get a conviction for the same DUI, your license will be suspended again. 

  • Ex. If I am arrested on 1/1/06, my license will be suspended for six months, if I blew and this is my first DUI.  (Unless I get my license reinstated during those six months)
  • Ex. If I keep my case open for six months, and close the case to a plea to DUI on 7/1/06, and I blew, then my license will be suspended for another six months.  I will not be able to get a good license until 1/1/07.


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Q: Why should I hire a DUI lawyer?

You want to hire a lawyer for many reasons.  A lawyer should be able to guide you through the process.  A DUI lawyer can not only handle your criminal case, but if hired early on, he or she may represent you during your administrative review. 

By hiring an attorney early, a qualified attorney can make the proper arguments, review the necessary documents, and make the right arguments during administrative proceedings regarding your license suspension.  

Any information your lawyer obtains in the administrative review can only help you in your criminal case.  By handling the administrative review, your lawyer can arm him or herself with the necessary tools to properly litigate your DUI matter.


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Q: When should I hire a lawyer?

As soon as possible.

By hiring your attorney within 10 days of getting arrested, a DUI lawyer will make the necessary applications to request a formal review with the DHSMV.  This will help you litigate the admistrative portion of your case to help you get back your drivers license.

By hiring your attorney before arraignment, or first appearance in court, your attorney can file the necessary pleadings to waive your appearance in most court appearances.  This saves you time and money.  This will help you minimize your days out from your other important matters that need attending in your daily life.


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Attorney Danise Ponton assists clients in South Florida including Miami-Dade County, Dade County, Broward County and the cities of Miami, Coral Gables, Miami Beach, Miami Shores, South Miami, North Miami, North Miami Beach, Surfside, Bal Harbor, Pinecrest, West Miami, Coconut Grove, Key Biscayne, Homestead, Kendall, Sweetwater and Westchester.


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