Q: What is an administrative license suspension (ALS)?

A: Any person who is charged with a DUI and either refuses to provide a chemical test, or provides a test that is over the legal limit, will be immediately placed under an administrative license suspension (ALS). This suspension goes into effect before court proceedings ever begin.

Q: How long is the suspension?

A: There are two categories of ALS suspensions. The first category includes someone who provided a chemical test result over the legal limit. The second category includes those who refused to provide a chemical test. The length of the suspension on either category is determined by whether the person has a prior DUI offense or prior offenses within the last six years. By following the chart below, you can find the length of the suspension that applies to your situation.

Number of Refusals of Chemical Test Length of Suspension
First refusal in 6 years 1 year
Second refusal in 6 years 2 years
Third refusal in 6 years 3 years
Fourth refusal or more in 6 years 5 years

 

Number of Tests over the Legal Limit Length of Suspension
First in 6 years 90 days
Second in 6 years 1 years
Third in 6 years 2 years
Fourth or more in 6 years 3 years

Note: It is possible to submit to a chemical test that produces a result under the legal limit and still be charged with DUI. If this happens to you, be aware that you are NOT under an administrative license suspension and can freely drive your vehicle, assuming you are not any other type of suspension. At your first hearing, the court has the power to issue what is known as a “public safety” suspension, however, this is not mandatory.

Q: Can I get driving privileges?

A: Yes. When you can get privileges is set forth below.

Number of Chemical Test Refusals Eligible for Privileges
First refusal in 6 years After 30 days
Second refusal in 6 years After 90 days
Third refusal in 6 years After 1 year
Fourth refusal or more in 6 years After 3 years

 

Number of Tests over the Legal Limit Eligible for Privileges
First in 6 years After 15 days
Second in 6 years After 30 days
Third in 6 years After 180 days
Fourth or more in 6 years After 3 years

Q: Can I challenge the administrative license suspension?

A: Yes. An ALS is challenged through an appeal that can be filed at the person’s initial five-day hearing or within 30 days after that hearing. The scope of the appeal is limited to whether one or more of the following conditions have not been met:

  • Did the arresting officer have REASONABLE GROUNDS to believe that you were in violation of the DUI law, and were you placed under arrest?
  • Did the officer REQUEST you to submit to a test?
  • Did the officer INFORM you of the consequences of taking or refusing the tests?
  • Did you REFUSE or did you FAIL the chemical test?

Q: When does the ALS terminate?

A: If you tested over the legal limit, the ALS terminates if you are found “not guilty” at trial. If the case is dismissed, the judge may terminate the ALS suspension, but they are not required to do so.

If you refused the chemical test, the ALS will stay in effect if you are found not guilty, or if the case is dismissed, unless the court declares the ALS void or you win your appeal of the ALS.

Call us today to set up a consultation where we can discuss what you need from your DUI lawyer. Our team would be glad to assist you in your DUI case.