DUI Formal Review Hearing in Broward County, Fort Lauderdale, FL
After you’ve been arrested for DUI in Fort Lauderdale and have either refused to provide a breath sample, or blew over 0.08 your driver license will be suspended immediately. The police will take away your physical driver license card and leave you with a fresh traffic ticket for a DUI. From the moment the traffic ticket is issued, you have 10 days to challenge the suspension. This process is known as the DUI Formal Review Process and it is extremely important to know about it because the police are certainly not going to help you.
I totally understand the roller coaster of emotions and events that happen after you are arrested for DUI. Exhaustion, fear, depression and anger are all very normal reactions but you can’t let them get the better of your good judgment. I can’t begin to tell you how important it is to hire an attorney within the first few days of your arrest; your right to drive is in serious danger!
Your attorney can help you begin the process of administrative review as soon as you meet with him/her and retain their services. I have done these countless times and can explain how important it is to start this process so we can challenge the suspension and learn valuable information about your upcoming criminal case.
The administrative process to remove the DUI suspension from your record is the first battle in the long war against your DUI charges in criminal court. The DUI suspension is not a criminal issue; it is administrative battle with the DMV. For most people, especially in South Florida where the public transportation is not the greatest or most efficient, the hardest consequence to deal with after being arrested is the driver’s license suspension.
Once we start the process of administrative review, you will receive a certificate in the mail, which serves as your permit to drive for a period of approximately 40 days. This permit gives you the ability to drive for “business purposes”. Business purposes includes work, school, church, doctor and to get food at the supermarket. There is no leisurely driving or going to the movies or Disneyland while driving on a temporary business purposes permit. During this 40 day period, your DUI attorney can set a hearing at the DMV and subpoena the arresting officers to come and give testimony. This hearing is known as an administrative hearing and your attorney is able to essentially cross examine and depose the arresting officer and gather valuable information about the circumstances of your traffic stop, investigation and arrest. Very often we learn information that was not written in any police report, which we can use later on during the criminal DUI case.
When the administrative hearing happens, we fight every single aspect of the investigation from start to finish and are always looking for ways to help the future DUI case. Depending on what we find out during the administrative hearing, we could even potentially get the DUI case thrown out before it gets to court. There are several ways to win the administrative review hearing; some of these ways are technicalities while others are based on legal issues. If the officer fails to appear at the hearing, the case will be dismissed for lack of officer participation. The police officer that arrested you has to prove to the DMV hearing officer all the elements of DUI in order to show that there was probable cause to arrest you and request a breath sample. If the officer is unable to prove that you were driving, then the suspension must be dismissed. The same goes for the reasons the officer gives for their initial contact with you. If the officer cannot prove a legal basis for stopping your car, then the arrest is unlawful and the suspension must be lifted. There are other reasons including the officers failure to follow proper protocols while administering the breath test or by assigning your case as a “Refusal” to submit to breath test when you actually did submit but for some reason could not comply with the breath volume requirement. There are several other ways for us to win the administrative hearing and get your license back. Call today to find out more.
If we win the administrative hearing, you get your driver license back and can drive as much or as little as you want without any restriction. The information gathered at these hearings gives us a tremendous advantage moving forward with the criminal DUI process. It usually takes months before we can speak to an arresting officer through the discovery process that is if the Court will even permit us to take the deposition of the arresting officer. We are noticing more and more often that courts are reluctant to grant permission to take depositions on DUI cases. This is why going through with a DUI administrative hearing is so important.
Contact the Hollywood Florida DUI Attorneys at Dell & Schaefer to discuss your case today. Attorney Grant Schwarz provides free, confidential initial case evaluations so that you can feel confident that you are hiring the best DUI Attorney to represent you. Call 1-800-403-3887 today to schedule a phone or in person consultation.
We defend DUI cases in Hollywood and Fort Lauderdale, as well as all throughout Broward County, Miami Dade County, Palm Beach County and statewide Florida.