Georgia ALS Hearing
In the State of Georgia, your license can be suspended even if you are not found guilty after a DUI arrest. This is because after a DUI, the Department of Driver Service will administratively suspend or revoke your license regardless of how the criminal proceeding ends up. In order to fight the administrative suspension, you must formally request an ALS hearing, pay an administrative fee, and present your case before an administrative law judge. If no request is made, the suspension is automatic and will last for a full year.
Administrative License Suspension Hearings
The state doesn't make it easy to fight an ALS hearing. It can even be confusing on when and how to request an ALS hearing. A hearing isn't automatic, and must be formally requested in writing. A driver only has 30 days from the date of arrest to request the hearing, or it is waived. Although this information can be difficult to find, it is all provided to a driver at the time of their arrest.
After an arrest for driving under the influence (DUI), the police or state patrol officer will take away your license. The officer will then usually provide you with a yellow copy of a form known as DS 1205. If you look closely at the form, it says “official notice of intent to suspend,” but the more important information is on the back of the form.
On the reverse side of the driver's copy of DS 1205, it provides “Hearing Procedures.” This indicates that a hearing must be formally made in writing, made within 30 days from the arrest date. An ALS hearing request must contain an “administrative fee” of $150. The request also must contain:
- the driver's full name;
- current address;
- driver's license number;
- date of birth; and
- telephone number where they can be reached between the hours of 8:00 am and 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday.
During an ALS hearing, there are limited issues which can be brought up before the judge. This is not the time to argue that your license is important, or that you have to drive for your job or family, or that the process isn't fair. The issues that can be raised before the judge are similar to the issues raised in a criminal hearing, but with different procedures. For this reason it is highly recommended to contact a local DUI defense lawyer with a focus on defending people charged with DUIs in ALS hearings and criminal cases.
Georgia DUI and ALS Defense
You only have 30 days to prevent an automatic loss of your driver's license. If you don't request a hearing, you lose your license after 30 days. If you do request a hearing, you can have an Atlanta DUI defense lawyer can represent you, so that you can keep your license. Call our office today so we can discuss what the consequences of a DUI can mean for your ability to drive. We will fight the ALS hearing, and defend your rights against any criminal charges.