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License Suspensions for California DUI

As a licensed driver in Orange County, California, you’re probably well-aware of the fact that a conviction for driving under the influence (DUI) would lead to fines, possible jail time, AA classes, DUI School, and driver’s license suspension. Since most Southern Californians need their driver’s license to get to and from work or school, the license suspension is usually one of their biggest concerns.

If you are convicted of DUI, how long will your driver’s license be suspended for? Will you be able to obtain a hardship license or a restricted license so you can drive to and from work and perform your basic household duties, such as taking your children to school, and going grocery shopping? Read on as we answer these common questions.

How Long Will My License Be Suspended For?

If you plead guilty to DUI or if you’re found guilty by the court, the Department of Motor Vehicles will suspend your driver’s license for six months. On the other hand, if you’re not convicted of DUI, the DMV could still suspend your license for four months if:

  • You are arrested for DUI and your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) registered at 0.08% or higher, and you fail to request a DMV hearing within 10 days of your arrest, or
  • You attend the DMV hearing, but you lose.

If the DMV decides to suspend your driver’s license for one of the above reasons – it’s called an “administrative suspension,” which is different than a court-triggered license suspension. If the DMV takes this action against your driving privilege, your license will be suspended for at least four months. Can you apply for a restricted license? Yes, but you are not eligible to apply for a restricted license until 30 days have passed since the beginning of the license suspension.

Court-Triggered License Suspensions

Suppose you are found guilty of a first-time DUI in court. In that case, the DMV will suspend your driver’s license for six months under Vehicle Code 13352(a)(1). If you are convicted of DUI in court, you can ask for a restricted license right away; you don’t have to wait the 30-day period. If you are subject to an administrative license suspension and a court-triggered license suspension, you will have to wait 30 days before you can ask for a restricted license.

Note: If you had a high BAC, or if you have multiple DUIs, or if you injured someone else as a result of the DUI incident, the judge may order you to install an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) as a condition of your DUI probation.

Need an Orange County DUI lawyer to fight your drug or alcohol-related DUI charges? Contact our firm for a free DUI defense consultation!