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Applying for a Restricted Driver’s License After a DUI Arrest

 Posted on June 08, 2021 in DUI

CA defense lawyerIn an effort to keep unsafe drivers off the road, California law typically requires a driver’s license suspension for a person who is arrested or convicted for driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol. However, in a world that frequently relies on personal vehicles for transportation, the loss of driving privileges can be a major inconvenience and even a cause of financial hardship. If your license has been suspended for DUI-related reasons, you may be able to mitigate some of the consequences by applying for a restricted license.

Restricted Licenses for California DUI Arrest Suspensions

In California, a DUI conviction is not necessary for a driver’s license suspension to go into effect. Rather, you could find your license suspended for four months if a chemical test shows that you had a BAC of at least 0.08. You may be able to contest your suspension with the help of an attorney at an administrative DMV hearing, but if the suspension goes into effect, you will be unable to legally drive under any circumstances unless you obtain a restricted driver’s license.

The California DMV offers two options for obtaining a restricted license under these circumstances. The first is to agree to install a breath alcohol ignition interlock device (BAIID) in your vehicle, in which case you would be able to drive for any reason as long as the device does not register alcohol in your breath. The second option is to serve at least 30 days of the suspension and then agree to drive only for the purposes of employment and attending a DUI program. For either option, you must apply through the DMV, pay a fee, and provide proof of insurance. These restrictions typically last for the duration of the suspension or slightly longer.

Restricted Licenses After a DUI Conviction

If you are convicted of DUI for the first time, you will face a more substantial license suspension of either six or 10 months, depending on the circumstances. The court may or may not order the installation of a BAIID for a first offender, but if it does, your driving restrictions will be outlined in your criminal sentence. If the court does not order a BAIID installed, you have the option to apply through the DMV for a restricted license either with a BAIID or for employment and treatment purposes only.

In the case of an aggravated or repeat DUI conviction, you can face a driver’s license suspension for two years or more. Some of this time may be considered a hard suspension, meaning that you are unable to apply for a restricted license. Once the hard suspension period ends, you may be able to apply for a restricted license that requires you to install a BAIID in your vehicle for at least a year.

Contact a San Rafael DUI Defense Lawyer

At Burglin Law Offices, P.C., we have a thorough understanding of the administrative and criminal penalties you may face if you are arrested or convicted for DUI. We can help you defend against your charges with the goal of avoiding conviction, and if you are convicted, we can help you take the necessary steps to legally drive again as soon as possible. Contact us today at 415-729-7300 for a free consultation with a Richmond County DUI defense attorney.





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