In California, DUI and driving while intoxicated DWI charges trigger a criminal court process and a parallel California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Admin per se (APS) hearing process. The process and procedure involved in an APS hearing is separate from the criminal court.
1) We request APS hearing within 10 days to halt suspension
The DMV provides a short 10 day window to request an APS hearing to dispute the license suspension. They strictly enforce the deadline.
Your license will be automatically suspended 30 days after arrest if we do not request the hearing in time.
2) The DMV’s APS officer typically focuses on three questions:
- Were you the driver of the vehicle involved?
- Did the officer make a lawful arrest and have reasonable cause to think you were driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol?
- Was your BAC above the legal limit? (.08%, .04% or .01%, depending on the driver).
Your exact blood alcohol level may not be known at the time of the hearing since labs can take weeks to release their testing results. Even if you weren’t driving drunk, the police usually have justifiable reasons why they believed you were.
3) Our former DMV APS hearing officer or lawyer will represent you and argue to keep your license
Usually only an expert in California DUI laws knows how to provide the best answers to the DMV officer. It can be tricky to answer the questions in the best way for your case. Our experts have handled thousands of DMV hearings and are skilled at utilizing the process to your best advantage. Our goal is to save your license and further your defense.
4) It’s important to retain a DUI attorney before the DMV hearing
The sooner we begin your defense, the better your odds of success. The DMV hearing is a key step that can function as a mini-trial allowing us to prepare for the potential criminal court process to come. At the APS hearing:
- We can request important evidence before the APS hearing such as the exact BAC lab test results.
- We know DUI arrest laws and are skilled at making the case whether an officer’s arrest followed all California laws.
- California offers a public defender for those without attorney representation. County public defenders are not able to represent you at APS hearings, nor take advantage of the benefits they provide you. But we can.
5) The APS hearing can be an important source of evidence to use in your DUI defense
For the APS hearing, your DWI lawyer can subpoena the arresting officer which may reveal mistakes in how you were arrested. Your attorney can also subpoena calibration and maintenance logs for the breathalyzer and explore the device’s history of malfunctions and issues. This evidence can later be used in your court trial or to negotiate with the District Attorney to get your charges reduced or dismissed.
APS hearings and criminal court cases are complex but offer valuable opportunities to build a successful DUI defense. Since the consequences of losing a DUI case are so high, it is important to have the best DUI lawyer that has done thousands of cases handle it for you. Our experienced California DUI Lawyers know how use every opportunity to achieve the best possible outcome for your case.