Whether a driver is arrested in DeKalb County, or any other county in the state of Georgia, the most important thing to remember is that, in most DUI cases, there is an automatic, administrative license suspension that happens 30 days after the arrest, unless the driver demands a hearing within 10 business days of the arrest.
Often, a person will be arrested for DUI but ignore the charge until they go to court. In this case, by the time they go to court, their 10 days have already expired. Once 30 days have expired, their licenses are suspended before they have even pled guilty or not guilty. Therefore, the first thing a person should remember is to stay on top of the administrative side and now exactly where a person stands with regards to the status of their license.
Additionally, the suspensions are different for an under-21 driver, depending on how high their BAC was, and for older drivers, whether the charge was a DUI of marijuana or DUI of alcohol, all of these things are different factors that affect the person’s ability to drive.
Ultimately, the most important thing to consider after a DUI if a person wants to keep their license is that they should choose a lawyer who is experienced in first offense DUI law.
If a person is arrested for a first DUI in DeKalb County, they have the right to challenge any suspension of their driver’s license. Importantly, a demand for a hearing must be followed within 10 days of the arrest or the driver faces an automatic license suspension. Drivers are entitled to a hearing before an administrative law judge before their license is suspended.
If arrested for DUI in DeKalb County, talk to a lawyer as soon as possible after being released from jail, because there is a short window to demand a hearing to challenge the suspension of a license.
While it seems painfully obvious that the outcome of the DUI case itself will impact a driver’s ability to drive, it is much more complex than that and is often something people forget. For example, if a person is arrested for DUI while they are 20, and they plead guilty while they are 20, they cannot drive. However, if they wait until they are 21 to plead guilty or have a trial, then they can get a permit to keep driving.
Many people who are charged and convicted of DUI in DeKalb County are eligible for a restricted license, which is commonly referred to as a work permit. This is a permit that allows a person to drive to and from work, to and from any sort of court-ordered treatment or probation, to the doctor for medical appointments, to the pharmacy to pick up medications, and to take themselves or their children to and from school.
Whether or not one is eligible for such a permit depends on the facts of their case and how the case is handled in court. Again, if facing charges for a DUI, talk to an experienced DUI lawyer in DeKalb County.
If someone has been administratively suspended after they have been arrested for DUI, if, for example, the driver refused to take the breath test and did not timely file a 10-day letter to stop the suspension, then they are suffering a 12-month suspension. If, however, the DUI charge itself is dismissed or the driver is found not guilty, then the outcome of no conviction can be used to lift the suspension.
If a person’s DUI case results in something other than a conviction for that charge alone, they are most times eligible to get their license back.