License Suspension 101
My column ideas come from reader's suggestions but this week it came from a 25 year old client on Friday November 13, 2015 who had a DUI with a Driving on a Suspended License. In Indio this could mean a 10-30 jail sentence... on a first offense.
She had NO prior DUI's which normally suspends a CDL. DMV under certain conditions can suspend or revoke your CDL. Thus the court or DMV have determined you are not allowed to drive UNTIL the suspension or revocation is lifted and your license is reinstated.
These are some of the reasons your CDL could be suspended:
DUI: California has some of the harshest DUI laws in the country and Indio is among the toughest. In our zeal to punish DUI's, some people think the DA's and the Indio Court have gone too far in suspending a license for around 6 months on a first conviction DUI... and demanding jail.
Your lawyer can request a temporary license and then petition for a restricted license, where you are allowed to drive to and from work and a DUI program. On a 2nd or 3rd DUI you can lose your license for 2-4 years.
MINOR WITH ANY ALCOHOL: This will suspend their license for 1 year or possibly until they turn 18.
NO INSURANCE: If you do not have auto insurance then your CDL will be suspended for 4 years but in 1 year you can petition for its return with proof of insurance (SR 22) and paying a reissuance fee.
NON REPORTED ACCIDENT: You will also get a suspended license if you are in an accident and do not report it.
REFUSAL: If you are stopped and refuse to take an alcohol or drug test your license will be suspended for 1 year... EVEN if you are innocent. The police may get a warrant from a judge to take your blood and the suspension takes place even when it shows you did not have alcohol or drugs. Your license is NOT being suspended because of a DUI, but rather because you refused to comply with California's Implied Consent Law. By driving on California's roads you impliedly consent to take a sobriety test if requested by law enforcement. It is in your DMV test booklet.
EXCESSIVE POINTS: Too many points from tickets and or accidents will likewise cause a suspension. Four points are allowed in a 1 year period; 6 in 2 and 8 in 3 year periods. A ticket is 1 point and an at fault accident is 2 points as is a DUI, Reckless and Hit and Run.
VANDALISM: Suspends a license for 1 year and if one is too young to drive their right to apply is delayed by one year.
FAILURE TO APPEAR IN COURT (FTA): If you either FTA or do not pay a fine on time, the court will issue a bench warrant and report this to DMV... who then suspends your license. In my client's case I learned she was cited for throwing a cigarette out the window and never went to court to take care of it.
CHILD SUPPORT: Failure to pay child support will also cause a suspension.
AGE or MENTAL DISORDER: To get your license back you must provide a Driver Medical Evaluation (DS-326) and I often appear at DMV hearing for this for some of our desert elderly.
If you have any questions regarding this column or ideas for future columns please contact Dale Gribow Attorney at Law at 760-565-0533.
Remember, When you drink don't get behind the wheel and have an auto accident (whether it is your fault or not) or get arrested for a DUI...I don't need the extra business.