it has been 12 years since my last dui dmv will not give back my license is there any way to get the 18 month course removed or will time ever bur

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it has been 12 years since my last dui dmv will not give back my license is there any way to get the 18 month course removed or will time ever bur

Asked on May 12, 2009 under Criminal Law, California

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

California has a DUI / DWI "washout period" of 10 years, calculated from arrest date to arrest date.  The point of the washout period in a DUI or DWI case is that after some period of time, the prior conviction "drops off," and is so stale it can no longer be used to add to the punishment for a current DUI offense.

Anyone arrested for drunk or drug driving within 10 years of the last arrest date will be charged with a second offense, with increased penalties and punishment.  The punishment in court for a second conviction is much harsher – a multiple-offense drunk driving conviction carries mandatory jail time, an 18-month alcohol education program, a required ignition interlock device ignition, and more.

Obviously it is critical to prove that your previous offense occurred more than 10 years ago.  You can try and clear this up with DMV directly, otherwise you should absolutely retain counsel. 

Get an attorney who specializes in DUI.  In your case it will be well worth it.  If money is an issue and you can't afford one go the the public defender or legal aid office in the area where the offense was committed.  They'll probably have better contacts in the court system than an attorney who is not local.

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

If you have not done what the law, or your own sentence, requires for you to get your license back, I think it is very unlikely that you will be able to get around that just by letting time go by.  You have no right to get your license back, if you don't obey the law.

You can find a California lawyer, who can look at the details of your case and give you a firm opinion on this, in a number of places, including our website, http://attorneypages.com


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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