License Suspension After a DWI Charge

Policeman gives driver a traffic ticket concept.

Losing your driver’s license is one of the key penalties of a DWI charge. A DWI license suspension will change your life in many ways. Being unable to drive will disrupt your schedule, make it more difficult to get to work or school, and force you to make other arrangements for just about everything, like doctor’s appointments, errands, and other aspects of your family’s routine.

Fortunately, DWI defense attorney Ryan Stowe can minimize the impact of a suspended license, assist with DWI license reinstatement, and help avoid some of the stress that comes with dealing with a DWI license suspension.

NC DWI License Suspensions and Revocations

From the moment you are charged with an NC DWI, the NC Division of Motor Vehicles can impose various revocations and suspensions on your driver’s license. And if you are convicted of an NC DWI, the penalties can be even more serious.

30-Day Suspension

The most common penalty after an NC DWI charge is a 30-day suspension of your driver’s license. You will receive a 30-day suspension if:

  • The police officer believes you were DWI
  • You submitted to a breath test
  • Your BAC was .08% or higher

To lawfully impose a 30-day suspension, the police officer must have complied with all testing procedures mandated by law. If the officer failed to comply with any of the testing procedures, you can challenge the DWI suspension by requesting a hearing with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).

If your driver’s license is suspended, after 30 days you are eligible to pay a fine of $100 in the county where you were charged with DWI and your driving privileges will be restored. Even though the suspension is only for 30 days, your driving privileges will remain suspended until you pay the $100 fine.

After ten days, you can petition for limited driving privileges, which allow you to drive to work, school, and for essential household purposes. To qualify, you must submit to a pretrial substance abuse assessment. If your petition is successful, you will be allowed to drive from 6 am until 8 pm, Monday through Friday. If your work hours are outside those times, you will need a letter from your employer to drive to and from work.

License Suspension for Refusing a Breath Test

If you refused to provide a breath sample, your driver’s license will be suspended for one year. For the suspension to be valid, the police officer must have read and provided you with the standard form that explains your rights and have had reasonable grounds to believe you were under the influence. If you willfully refuse, your license will be suspended for one year.

Your lawyer can request a hearing to determine whether the suspension was lawful. Common reasons to challenge the suspension include whether the officer had reasonable suspicion to believe you were under the influence, whether the appropriate procedures were followed, and whether your refusal to submit to the test was willful.

By requesting a hearing on your refusal, you temporarily suspend the revocation of your license until the hearing is complete.

License Suspension After a DWI Conviction

If you are convicted of an NC DWI, your driver’s license will be suspended for one year. Most people are eligible for a limited driving privilege after a DWI conviction.

If you had another DWI offense within the preceding three years, your license will be suspended for four years. A third conviction within ten years will result in the permanent revocation of your driver’s license.

If your license is suspended for four years, you will be eligible to petition for the restoration of your license after two years. If your license is revoked, you will need to wait at least three years before you can request a DMV hearing.

Requesting an NC DMV DWI License Reinstatement

If your driver’s license was suspended after an NC DWI, you might wish to request a DMV hearing. If you are successful, the license suspension will be reduced or removed. You can request a DMV hearing online, by mail, or in person. Once the hearing date is set, you will need to bring a copy of your driving record and ensure any unresolved issues have been addressed.

At the hearing, you will appear before the DMV and request to have your license reinstated.

Contact The Stowe Law Firm, PLLC for Aggressive NC DWI Defense

When you work with the Stowe Law Firm, PLLC, NC DWI defense attorney Ryan Stowe will explain the NC license reinstatement process and how it applies in your specific situation, assist you in properly completing the correct forms, and represent you at all DMV and court hearings. He will investigate the specific nature of the charges against you, identify legal strategies to challenge your NC license suspension, and fight to protect your rights.

Attorney Stowe has earned certificates from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in both "DWI Detection and Standardized Field Sobriety Testing" and "Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE)." ARIDE is an advanced-level course, and it is possible that Mr. Stowe has received more training in DWI detection than the officer who arrested you. Additionally, Mr. Stowe has completed the NHTSA SFST instructor course and is qualified to teach police officers how to administer Standardized Field Sobriety Testing. This skill set is critically important if we need to challenge your field sobriety tests.

If you have questions about a pending DWI charge in North Carolina, contact Ryan Stowe for a consultation. Driving while impaired can cost you more than you realize. Always consult with a DWI attorney in North Carolina to ensure the best result.

Categories: DWI