Basically, an Order of Suspension of a person's privilege to operate a motor vehicle is the technical term for getting your license suspended. In the state of California, a driver faces license suspension from both the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and as a result of a criminal conviction for DUI. An Order of Suspension from the APS proceeding becomes effective 30 days after you have been served notice.
A driver can face license suspension after getting charged with DUI. In addition, there are other circumstances that can cause suspension:
- Failing to Appear (FTA): If you fail to appear in court after receiving a traffic ticket, your license will be suspended until you have appeared;
- Not having proof of car insurance;
- Failing to pay child support;
- Failing to pay a fine resulting from a FTA; and
- Operating a vehicle while physically/mentally unfit.
The amount of time your license will be suspended will depend upon the severity of the charge. In general, administrative suspensions range from 30 days to one year.
As is usually the case, violations involving DUI or other alcohol related offenses will lead to more serious charges. This is true with license suspension as well. A single DUI conviction will lead to the DMV to suspending your license for about 6 months and will force you to complete an alcohol education program before having your license reinstated.
When something like this happens, it is important to remember that the DMV keeps a public record of your driving history. Every time an incident occurs, it will be on your driving record for a minimum of 3 years. Points may also be added to your license. The points can accumulate and if you reach a total of 4 points in a 12-month period, you will be faced with a license suspension of 6 months.
DUI offenses bring about a special type of suspension. Starting in 1990, California implemented the Admin Per Se (APS) program. Under this program, a driver stopped for DUI will have his or her license confiscated immediately if:
- Your BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) level is .01% or higher and you are on DUI probation;
- Your BAC level is .04% or higher and you are driving a commercial vehicle;
- Your BAC level is .08% or higher and you are driving a non-commercial vehicle; or
- You refuse to submit to a BAC test.
Of course, a license suspension is just one of the penalties you will face if you are arrested for DUI in Fresno or other parts of California. These penalties can include jail time, DUI school, fines, community service, and the installation of an ignition interlock device.
A DUI conviction is tough, whether this is your first or third. The costs and penalties associated with a California DUI are strict and it is therefore in your best interest to work with a capable and seasoned DUI defense lawyer.
I have spent more than two decades defending drivers charged with DUI and I can help you, too. Please take a moment to contact my office if you have been arrested and charged with DUI in Fresno or any of the surrounding areas.