If you have been pulled over on suspicion of driving while intoxicated (DWI) or driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or a controlled substance, your license can automatically be suspended in Texas for refusing to submit to a chemical alcohol concentration test. The administrative license suspension can also apply if an individual submits to testing but fails the intoxication test.
The administrative license suspension is not a criminal penalty for DWI and is commonly known as a civil penalty. This type of penalty and any hearings that may arise from the suspension are separate from any criminal penalties or proceedings that may arise from DWI charges. It can even occur if the individual is not charged with driving while intoxicated offense.
If an individual has received an administrative license suspension, they can request a hearing to have the suspension revoked. However, the time period for making this request is very short, so it is important to have an experienced DWI lawyer by your side to guide you through this process.
Dallas Administrative License Suspension Hearing Lawyer
If your license has been suspended for refusing to submit to chemical testing in Dallas, or any of the surrounding areas in Texas, including Garland, Irving, Grand Prairie, Denton, Plano, McKinney, Fort Worth, Arlington, Mesquite, Carrolton, Richardson, Lewisville or Frisco, contact the Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy.
Attorney Richard McConathy will represent your interests at an administrative license hearing and make every effort to have your license reinstated. Call the Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy for a free consultation at 972-233-5700 about your alleged DWI refusal license suspension.
Administrative License Suspension in Texas
A person who has been requested to submit to a chemical test for suspected DWI in Texas can receive an administrative license suspension for refusing to submit to a chemical test or for submitting to a chemical test but failing to pass it.
The periods of suspension are different for both types of administrative license suspension. The administrative license suspension periods for refusing to submit to chemical testing are as follows, according to the Tex. Transp. Code Ann. § 724.035:
- 180 days for a first DWI refusal;
- Two years if the individual has refused to submit to chemical testing, was convicted of any DWI offense, or failed a chemical alcohol concentration level test within the preceding ten years; and
- One-year commercial driving period disqualification for an individual who possesses a commercial driver’s license (CDL).
An individual who does submit to chemical testing can still receive a license suspension for having a blood or breath alcohol concentration (BAC) level of .08 or higher, .04 or higher for commercial drivers operating commercial vehicles, or having any alcohol in the system for drivers under the age of 21. Even if the individual is not charged with a DWI, their license can still be administratively suspended. According to Tex. Transp. Code Ann. § 524.022, the periods of suspension are as follows:
- 90 days for a first offense;
- One year if the individual has refused to submit to chemical testing, was convicted of any DWI offense, or failed an intoxication test from a BAC over the legal limit within the preceding ten years;
- One year for a commercial driver operating a commercial motor vehicle with a BAC of .04;
- One year for a commercial driver operating any motor vehicle with a BAC of .08;
- Three years if the commercial driver was transporting hazardous material;
- 60 days if under the age of 21 with any detectable amount of alcohol in the system;
- 120 days if under the age of 21 with any detectable amount of alcohol in the system and any previous alcohol-related convictions; and
- 180 days if under the age of 21 with any detectable amount of alcohol in the system and two or more alcohol-related convictions.
An administrative license suspension becomes effective 40 days after the individual has received notice of the suspension.
Administrative License Revocation Hearing in Dallas
An individual who has received an administrative license suspension or revocation can make a written request for a hearing under Tex. Transp. Code Ann. § 724.041 within 15 days of receiving notice of the license suspension to the Department of Public Safety headquarters.
If the request for the hearing has been timely submitted, the State Office of Administrative Hearings is required to hold a hearing with an administrative law judge before the effective date of the suspension, but not before the 11th day after the date the person has received notice.
The individual’s license suspension is put on hold until a final decision has been made by the administrative law judge at the revocation hearing. Once the administrative law judge has made a decision that has been issued and signed, it is final.
Dallas Issues at ALR Hearing
According to the Tex. Transp. Code Ann. § 724.042, the issues the administrative law judge will determine at a hearing for refusal to submit to testing are whether:
- The law enforcement officer had reasonable suspicion or probable cause to stop or arrest the individual;
- The law enforcement officer had probable cause to believe the individual was operating a motor vehicle or watercraft in a public place while intoxicated;
- The law enforcement officer placed the individual under arrest and requested they submit to a chemical alcohol concentration level test; and
- The individual refused to submit to the chemical test.
Under Tex. Transp. Code Ann. § 524.035, the issues the administrative law judge will determine at a hearing for failure to pass an intoxication test are whether:
- The individual had an alcohol concentration over the legal limit while operating a motor vehicle in a public place, or a watercraft;
- If the individual was under the age of 21, if they had any detectable amount of alcohol in their system while operating a motor vehicle in a public place or a watercraft; and
- The law enforcement officer had reasonable suspicion to stop or probable cause to arrest the individual.
Effect of ALR Hearing in Dallas
As stated in Tex. Transp. Code Ann. §§ 724.043 and 524.035, if the judge makes a final decision by determining each of the issues above were established for the type of administrative license suspension, the license will remain suspended. If the judge finds even one of the elements was not established, the individual’s license will be returned, the license will be reinstated, or any order denying the issuance of the license will be rescinded.
Find a Fort Worth Administrative License Revocation Hearing Attorney | Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy
Contact the Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy today for a consultation about your license suspension for failure to pass an intoxication test throughout Dallas County in Texas. Richard McConathy is an experienced Dallas driving while intoxicated lawyer who will make every effort to help you reinstate your license at an administrative license revocation hearing.
Call 972-233-5700 today for a consultation about your DWI administrative license suspension throughout Dallas County in Texas and the surrounding counties of Denton County, Collin County, and Tarrant County.