How Long Is Your License Suspended for DUI?
Getting charged with a DUI/OVI in Ohio is a serious matter. Not only does a conviction lead to expensive fines and time in jail, but it also results in the suspension of your driver’s license.
One of the many questions we are asked by prospective clients is, how long will my license be suspended for a DUI? The good news is your license will only get suspended if you are convicted of a DUI.
In fact, many of our clients do not end up with a DUI conviction. Our goal is to get a favorable outcome with a reduction or a dismissal.
Following an arrest for an OVI, The Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) will send you a notice that your license will be suspended pursuant to an administrative license suspension.
One of the benefits of hiring us to represent you in an OVI case is that we will appeal the BMV’s determination to suspend your license.
DUI Driver’s License Suspension
How Long Do You Lose Your License After A DUI In Ohio?
Driving privileges are important to our clients. We understand how important it is to drive for a living. We do it every day as we drive from Canton to Cleveland, and Sandusky to Ashtabula on a regular basis.
Assuming for a moment that the prosecution has a strong case against you:
- For a first DUI offense in 6 years: You will lose your license from six months to three years. This is a judicially imposed suspension, which means the suspension can be negotiated and argued for a reduction in the length of the suspension. After interacting with the arresting police officer, a lot of people think that their license will only be suspended for 90 days because they agreed to take the breath test. Unfortunately, this is how police officers trick people into taking the breath test – the implied promise of a shorter license suspension.
- For a second DUI offense in 6 years: With a prior DUI within six years, a person could potentially have their driver’s license suspended for one year up to five years. This decision is also a judicially imposed sentence by the judge presiding over your case, instead of the BMV.
We know that some clients need their licenses to lawfully drive back and forth to work every day. Commercial driver’s license holders and others who drive for a living obviously need a valid license for employment.
We know how hard it is to find good jobs, and we fight as hard as possible to make sure our client’s driving privileges are protected.
If you are facing license suspension for DUI, call us today at (440) 471-7784 for a free consultation on how we can help you.
Why Did The Police Take My License After a DUI / OVI Arrest?
Some people who are arrested for a DUI in Ohio get their licenses taken away from the police. An officer will take a person’s driver’s license at the time they are arrested because they either refused to take a breath test or they failed the breath test.
Ohio law requires law enforcement to issue a Form 2255 after someone refuses the breath test or by failing the test because their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was above the legal limit.
This form puts you on notice that you have lost the right to drive. If this is your first DUI, the notice states that you cannot drive for 90 days if you failed the breathalyzer test. If you refused to take a breathalyzer test, the form states that you cannot drive for one year.
We understand that the paperwork is confusing and you are concerned about getting your license reinstated and being able to drive. When we represent you for a license suspension in Ohio, the goal is to get your driving privileges back as soon as possible.
What Are the Types of License Suspension in Ohio?
In Ohio, there are two types of DUI license suspensions:
- An administrative license suspension (ALS)
- Criminal license suspension
The Ohio BMV oversees an administrative license suspension A criminal license suspension is administered by the court system.
While an administrative suspension can last up to 90 days, if you are convicted of a first-time DUI offense, you can lose your license for three years.
Not having your driving privileges for that long makes it difficult to commute to work or school, make important appointments, go shopping, run household errands, and live your life in general.
Fortunately, Ohio now gives DUI offenders an opportunity to drive after conviction if they install an ignition interlock device (IID) on all vehicles they own and operate.
Rather than wait at least a year to regain your driving privileges after a first offense, the minimum suspension period is six months when you get an IID installed in your vehicle.
Administrative License Suspension in Ohio
Few people, let alone most attorneys, understand how driver’s license suspensions work after a DUI/OVI arrest.
An administrative license suspension is issued when one of two things happens:
- You blow over one of the two legal limits (0.08 or 0.17); or,
- You refuse to submit to testing.
For a first-time DUI with a breath test of 0.08 BAC, you can lose your license for 90 days. If this is your first offense and you refused all tests, you can administratively lose your license for a period of one full year.
We file motions to get our client’s driving privileges back on an administrative suspension. This means that even with a failed breathalyzer test, you could be allowed to drive for necessary things like driving to work, church, school, grocery shopping, and medical appointments within 15 days. Even if you refused all the tests the police wanted you to take, you could be driving in 30 days.
By challenging the suspension as soon as possible, you are not only making a case for driving privileges, but you are forcing the prosecutor to prove that the traffic stop was proper, that there was a reason to remove you from your vehicle, and that there was probable cause to arrest you for DUI.
We don’t make it easy for the prosecution to convict you. They know that facing a professional Cleveland DUI license suspension attorney will make it harder to convince a judge or a jury that you are guilty.
If our challenge is successful, the suspension is immediately dismissed. This will also send a message to the prosecutor that the court feels their case against you is weak.
How We Help Our Clients Get Back Their Driving Privileges
Fortunately, there are a few ways to successfully reinstate driving privileges. Think of your driver’s license as an apple.
The Ohio BMV gets the first bite with an administrative license suspension. The court system gets a second bite at suspending your license if you are convicted.
Below is a brief overview of some of the ways we help obtain privileges for our clients:
- Appealing the administrative license suspension. When you are arrested for a DUI, your license is almost always taken, you are given a BMV form numbered 2255, and the Ohio BMV suspends your license. This form informs you of your suspension and allows the police to administratively, without a formal hearing, revoke your license for 15 days on a first offense. In order to obtain privileges within this period of time, you must file a formal appeal.
- Getting a stay on an administrative License suspension. This is closely related to the appeal and is sometimes used by a judge to see how serious a person is about driving, without depriving the court of the ability to suspend a license while the case is active. A stay is temporary. If a person is found guilty of DUI, the suspension will be automatic.
- The strategy of filing the appeal. Depending on the timing and the client’s needs, we strategize how and when we will file the appeal to get their license reinstated. In some cases, it can be beneficial to wait out the 15 days. Get answers to your questions by talking with a DUI attorney from Patituce & Associates. Contact us to see how we can help you today.
Want to learn what we can do to help with your license suspension? Call us at (440) 471-7784 today for a free consultation with one of our Cleveland DUI license suspension lawyers