REINSTATING YOUR LICENSE AFTER A DWI ARREST IN HOUSTON
In the state of Texas, law enforcement officers maintain the power to confiscate your driver’s license if they have reason to believe that you were operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs—also known as driving while intoxicated (DWI). During their initial investigation, an officer will typically ask the suspected drunk driver to perform a series of field sobriety tests and/or submit a breath sample for analysis. If the driver fails any of these tests or the results of a breathalyzer show that they have a blood-alcohol concentration of .08% or greater, the officer would have the right to seize that individual’s driver’s license and notify them that it will be suspended within 40 days of their arrest.
The officer would then issue a temporary license, which would expire 40 days thereafter, and inform the driver that they could schedule an Administrative License Revocation (ALR) hearing within 15 days if they would like to contest the suspension. It is important to understand that the same action could be taken if the driver simply refuses to participate in a sobriety test—including a breath, blood or urine test. Since implied consent laws require all drivers in the state of Texas to adhere with chemical testing upon a law enforcement officer’s request, the officer must inform the driver that their license would be subject to suspension if they refuse. Should the driver fail to schedule an ALR hearing within the following two weeks, the suspension would automatically go into effect.
YOU ONLY HAVE 15 DAYS TO SCHEDULE AN ALR HEARING IN TEXAS
Once your license has been confiscated for drunk driving, you would only have 15 days to schedule a hearing with the State Office of Administrative Hearings. This request must be submitted through a written application. After the request is processed, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) will send a letter to the address that is listed on record—which will contain the date, time and location of your hearing. In some cases, it may take up to 120 days for the hearing to be scheduled. If you fail to submit a written request within the allotted 15 days, however, you will be notified by mail that your request for a hearing has been denied. For this reason, it is vitally important that you take action immediately after your arrest if you hope to contest the suspension.
WILL I NEED TO HIRE LEGAL COUNSEL FOR MY SUSPENSION HEARING?
While it is not required that you retain legal counsel for your Administrative License Revocation hearing, it is highly recommended that you do. Since you would only be able to contest the suspension if you could present a valid argument to the hearing officer, you should not hesitate to let a Houston DWI lawyer from Jim Medley & Associates, P.C. speak on your behalf. Not only would this help you to ensure that you are able to maintain your driving privileges, but it may even bolster your chances of successfully avoiding a conviction at your criminal trial. While the ALR hearing has no bearing on the subsequent criminal proceedings, it will give your attorney the chance to cross-examine the arresting officer and find weaknesses in their testimony. As such, there is no reason why you should forego this step.
DISCUSS YOUR CASE WITH A HOUSTON DWI DEFENSE ATTORNEY TODAY
If you are interested in fighting to maintain your driving privileges after a recent DWI arrest, the legal team at Jim Medley & Associates, P.C. encourages you to take the first step today by seeking the help of our Houston DWI attorney. Not only can he contribute more than 20 years of criminal law experience to your case, but he can even utilize his background as a former police officer in your favor. Having worked on both sides of the law, Attorney Medley truly understands what it takes to win a difficult case. For this reason, you should not hesitate to find out how our firm can assist you in contesting the suspension of your driver’s license. All you have to do is call our office at (713) 668-4589 to get started. If you would prefer to contact us online, you can also submit a free case evaluation form directly from our website.
To learn more about DWI license suspensions in Texas, you can also visit our related pages by clicking here.