Challenging Your License Suspension After a DWI Arrest

Date Published 6 · 07 · 21

Arrest Forms

The Department of Public Safety will seek the suspension of your license following an
arrest for Driving While Intoxicated. When someone is arrested for DWI, the arresting officer should read and issue a DIC-24 (Statutory Warning) form and a DIC-25 (Notice of Suspension and Temporary Driving Permit) form.

The DIC-24 informs the person being arrested for DWI of the consequences of refusing
to provide a requested blood or breath sample. The form also lets you know the consequences of providing a blood or breath specimen with an alcohol concentration above .08. The DIC-25 serves as a notice of suspension of the person’s license and is a temporary driving permit for 40 days.

If you fail or refuse the breath or blood test, the officer will confiscate your driver’s
license and issue you a temporary driving permit (DIC-25 form). You will have 15 days from the date of receiving the DIC-25 to request an Administrative License Revocation (ALR) hearing to challenge the suspension of your license. I have found the better practice is to request the hearing within 15 days of the arrest. This is a critical stage in your case and it is important to make sure the hearing is requested. This provides you with an excellent opportunity to challenge the suspension of your license and obtain discovery in your case.

At the ALR Hearing

At the ALR hearing, the Department of Public Safety will have to prove by a preponderance of evidence the following:

  1. An officer had reasonable suspicion for the detention or stop;
  2. The officer had probable cause to make the arrest for DWI; and
  3. Either one of the following:
    a. You refused to provide a breath or blood sample when requested by the
    officer; or
    b. You provided a breath or blood sample above .08

If the Department of Public Safety fails to prove any one of the above elements by a
preponderance of the evidence, your license will not be suspended. Therefore, it is important to request an Administrative License Revocation within 15 days of receiving your notice of suspension to challenge the suspension of your license.

Frequently Asked Questions about driver’s license suspension after a DWI arrest:

  1. If I have been arrested for DWI will my license automatically be suspended?

A: No. If you request an Administrative License Revocation Hearing within 15 days from the date of your arrest you will have the opportunity to challenge the suspension of your license.

I remember representing a client who was arrested for DWI and was greatly concerned about his license being suspended because he would lose his job. We went to work on his case, and immediately requested an administrative license revocation hearing to challenge the suspension of his license. We then thoroughly reviewed the police officer’s offense reports to see if the department would be able to prove by a preponderance of the evidence the officer had reasonable suspicion to detain him. At the conclusion of the hearing, we where able to convince the administrative law judge that in his case the officer did not have a reasonable suspicion to detain my client and the judge denied the department’s request to suspend my client’s license.

2. Is someone’s driver’s license suspended immediately after an arrest for DWI in Texas?

A: No. While the arresting officer usually confiscates someone’s license after the person fails or refuses a breath or blood sample request, the license is not suspended right away.
If an ALR hearing is requested within 15 days the driver’s license will not be suspended
until the Administrative Law Judge issues a final ruling on your case. If an ALR hearing
is not requested within the 15 days, then the license suspension will go into effect 40 days
after the date of arrest.

3. When should I hire an attorney after being arrested for DWI?

A: Within 15 days. You only have 15 days from the date of receiving the notice of suspension to request an ALR hearing. As you can tell there is a very short window to challenge the suspension of your license and that is one very good reason to hire an attorney immediately upon being arrested.

4. How long could my license be suspended?

A: If the Administrative Law Judge suspends your license after the hearing, the suspension could last from 90 days to 2 years. The length of the suspension will depend on if you provided a breath specimen and if your license has been suspended before because of a DWI.
>> Sample above 0.08
> First Offense: If it is your first DWI and you provide a breath or blood
specimen above 0.08 then your license will be suspended for 90 days.

> Previous suspension: If your license has previously been suspended
because of an intoxicated offense in the ten years preceding the current
DWI then your license will be suspended for one year.

>> Refusal
> First Offense: If it is your first DWI and you refuse to provide a breath or blood sample when requested by the officer then your license will be suspended for 180 days.
> Previous suspension: If you license has previously been suspended
because of an intoxicated offense in the ten years preceding the current
DWI then your license will be suspended for two years.

5. How will I get to work if my license is suspended?

A: In the event your license is suspended after an Administrative License Revocation Hearing you may be able to obtain a restricted license to drive in Texas.

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