THE CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES.
I JUST GOT A DUI/DWI. THEY LET ME OUT OF JAIL AND GAVE ME A DATE TO APPEAR IN COURT. DO I HAVE ANYTHING ELSE I MUST DO RIGHT AWAY?
DUI and DWI are very similar. DUI stands for Driving Under the Influence while DWI stands for Driving While Intoxicated.
Concurrent with the citation, booking receipt and a host of other papers you were given concurrent with your release you will find within them a pink letter size sheet of paper that substitutes for your driver license. (The bottom left hand corner identifies this form as a DS367.) What is this form and what, if anything, do I do with it?
The DS367 tells you there are 10 days that must expire while you do nothing to protect your rights. If those 10 days expire without YOU calling the DMV to request a hearing your license will become suspended for four (4) months. (If you have a prior conviction that action will expand to a year.) However, for the most part it’s the first time offender that is surprised by this requirement.
YOU MUST CALL THE DMV BEFORE 10 DAYS EXPIRE AND REQUEST A HEARING. YOU MUST ALSO ASK FOR A STAY ON THE PROPOSED ACTION AND YOU MUST ASK FOR DISCOVERY.
By asking for a stay the action to suspend your license for the mentioned four month period will not occur until after you have had your hearing, received an adverse decision, and have been told the date your suspension is to commence. You may continue to drive and the DMV will send you a temporary license.
By asking for DISCOVERY you ask for the DMV to send you all the information filed by the arresting officer and the crime lab with that agency to be used as supporting evidence why the DMV has the power to suspend your license.
This is no time to say I was smashed and I must give up. You do not know what the officer wrote, how you performed or what avenues of defense you have open to you. Doing nothing and accepting the punishment though a solution is not acceptable.
If YOU take action to protect your license and ask for a hearing it will buy you a period to where the worst suspension you will receive will be for 30 days. You will be forced to drive on a restricted license for six (6) months. ( to and from your place of employment and during your employment and the same for any program you enroll in, is generally the restriction.)
To give you this window of forgiveness you must enroll in an AB541 program of a duration of 3 ,6 ,or 9 months. ( the length of the program you perform is based upon you blood alcohol level and sometimes the court you appear before. Most everyone has a list of programs available to you near your home or workplace.
SO DON’T SIT THERE FEELING SORRY FOR YOURSELF
Call the DMV, Office of Driver’s Safety today