ADMINISTRATIVE PER SE (APS) HEARING
In addition to criminal charges following a DUI arrest, you may also face an administrative action by the Department of Motor Vehicles. Law enforcement officers are required by California law to serve a "notice of driving privilege suspension/revocation" order if the arrested driver does any of the following: 1) submits to a breath test with the results showing .08 or higher blood alcohol content (BAC); 2) submits to a blood or urine test, and the officer reasonably believes that the results will show a .08 or greater BAC; 3) is under 21 years old, or is on probation for DUI, and submits to a preliminary alcohol screening test or evidentiary breath test with results showing a .01 or greater BAC; and 4) refuses to submit to a breath or blood test following a DUI arrest.
Purpose of the Hearing
The APS hearing is the driver's opportunity to contest the action initiated against them by the DMV following a DUI arrest. If a hearing is not requested within 10 days of the DUI arrest date then the right to the hearing is forfeited. As part of our representation of individuals facing DUI charges, Berglund Law Office, P.C. represents our clients for the DMV hearing. The APS hearing is very difficult for a number of reasons and it is best to have a good DUI attorney represent you. CONTACT our office today if you are facing DUI charges and an APS action against your driving privilege has been initiated.
Temporary Driver's License
Following your DUI arrest, the arresting officer will likely confiscate your California driver's license. The driver's copy of the suspension order is pink. This document also serves as a temporary driver's license which is good for 30 days. Upon receipt of this notice following a DUI arrest you have only 10 days to contact the DMV Office of Driver Safety and request a hearing. If you fail to do so, the temporary license will expire at the end of the 30 day period and the suspension period will begin immediately. If you do request a hearing, you are entitled to a "stay" of the license suspension. This means that your driver's license will remain valid pending the outcome of the hearing.
DMV REQUEST FOR REEXAMINATION
The APS hearing described above is applicable only to those drivers that have been arrested for DUI involving alcohol or who refused to submit to a breath or blood test following a DUI arrest. An APS action cannot be lawfully taken if the driver is arrested for suspicion of DUI involving drugs. What may occur when a officer makes a DUI arrest involving drugs, however, is that the officer sends a report to the DMV requesting reexamination of the driver. This is based on the theory that the driver may have a drug problem which will prevent them from safely operating a motor vehicle. A reexamination may also be requested by an officer when he/she observes erratic driving, or investigates an accident and suspects there may be a mental or physical disability.
Upon receipt of the officer's report, DMV will take one of the following actions: 1) take no action (insufficient evidence in the report); 2) send the driver a notice of reexamination hearing, without indicating an intent to revoke the privilege to drive; 3) send the driver notice of intention to revoke their driving privilege, along with notice of the right to a hearing on the action; or 4) immediately revoke the driving privilege, then notify the driver of the revocation and their right to a hearing. Upon receipt of the notice, the driver has 14 days to request a hearing (assuming the notice was mailed).
At the reexamination hearing, the hearing officer will usually ask the driver about their driving history and use of drugs. If prescription drugs are involved, they may ask the driver's physician to complete a "Driver Medical Evaluation" form. After hearing the evidence presented, the hearing officer will decide whether to suspend the driver's license if they believe the driver is unable to safely operate a motor vehicle. The hearing officer may also elect to place the driver on medical probation, requiring regular submissions of the "Driver Medical Evaluation" form, or require the driver to submit to a driving test. The DMV may not revoke a person's driving privilege solely based on a medical condition if they "have medical information which indicates the person may safely operate a motor vehicle." CONTACT our office today if you have been mailed a Notice of Reexamination Hearing by the DMV following your arrest for DUI involving drugs.
NEGLIGENT OPERATOR HEARINGS
A driver is subject to a license suspension if he or she accumulates too many points on their record within a set period of time: 4 points in 1 year; 6 points in 2 years; or 8 points within a 3-year period will result in DMV sending notice of a negligent operator suspension. If the person wants to contest the suspension, they should immediately respond to the DMV suspension order and request a hearing. Berglund Law Office, P.C.. also handles these hearings on behalf for our clients. There are several issues that we look at in these hearings. Sometimes out of state violations are assigned the wrong point count number and, upon closer review of the driver's record, it is determined that the client has not reached the point count threshold. In some instances, the DMV hearing officer will agree to not suspend the license but rather place our client on "probation" for an agreed upon period of time. This means that the driver's license will remain valid as long as he or she does not pick up any new point violations during the probationary period. CONTACT our office today if you have received a Notice of Negligent Operator Suspension Order.