One of the primary penalties that occurs after a DUI is the suspension of your driver’s license. This can cause problems in your life, which is why you should call a first-offense DUI attorney to learn all of your options. There are steps you can take to manage a driver’s license suspension after a first DUI in Florence.
What Happens to a Driver’s License After a First-Time DUI Charge?
If a driver submits to a breath, blood, or urine test, nothing will happen to their license after being charged with a DUI. They will be able to keep their license while their case is pending, but it will be suspended for six months if they are convicted. They then have the option of having an ignition interlock device installed, which would be in their vehicle for a period of six months during the period of suspension. That driver gets a separate interlock-specific driver’s license.
They have to blow into the interlock device to start their car and at periodic intervals while driving. If it registers 0.02 or higher, it will lock them out of their car for 15 minutes. If they do not blow above a .02 for the 90 days, their license suspension could be reduced to 120 days, at which point they can have their interlock device removed.
If a defendant in Florence is charged with a DUI first offense and they refuse a breath test or refuse a blood or urine test, their driver’s license gets suspended while their case is pending, which is called pre-trial license suspension.
During the period of their pre-trial license suspension, they can also have an ignition interlock device installed on their car, with the same rules. If their license is suspended pre-trial, and they are ultimately convicted of a DUI, they get credit towards any license suspension for all the time they were suspended pre-trial.
Challenging a License Suspension
A defendant is entitled to a refusal hearing during their case, where they can contest the fact that they refused or did not refuse the test. One big factor is that there is an implied consent warning that the officers have to read to an individual before they ask them to submit to breath, blood, or urine test. That warning is very specific and it has to be read to the letter.
If that warning was not read properly beforehand, that could be grounds to have the refusal thrown out. On the other hand, an officer might say the defendant did not blow into the machine properly and therefore, it was a refusal. There are ways to contest the idea that that defendant actually refused to submit to a test. After someone is convicted of a DUI first offense in Florence, there is no contesting the driver’s license suspension, which is mandatory by law.
Applying for a Restricted License
When someone goes to court for their first appearance, they will lose their license if it is a pre-trial suspension. The county clerk sends the information to the Department of Transportation in Frankfort, which then sends a letter to the defendant letting them know that they have been suspended and providing the opportunity to apply for an ignition interlock device.
The defendant then fills out an application and goes to the local Department of Transportation facility and pay a fee. At the same time, they also order an ignition interlock device and make an appointment to have it installed in their vehicle. Once that is in place, the individual will go to the county clerk’s office to get the interlock-specific driver’s license. The procedure is the same if they have been convicted of the DUI as well.
Talk to a Florence Attorney About a Driver’s License Suspension After a First DUI
After being charged with your first DUI in Florence, you will likely have your driver’s license suspended – but that does not mean you will be forbidden from driving. Reach out to one of our experience lawyers to learn what options are available to you. You may be able to drive with a restricted license or even challenge a suspension entirely.