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If a d.u.i case is won on the criminal side of the spectrum, dose the d.m.v has the power to invalidate license ??

Tampa, FL |

Does d.m.v have the power to invalidate license if criminal side of the case is won due to no probable cause for stop,writing wrong citation,contradicting as of why the stop was made,tipster said car was swerving,report wrote up saying reckless driver,75% of the car was parked in the grassy side of the yard that was suppose to be I guess t.p.d 2nd reason for the stop since they didn't witness or corroborate any criminal activity just an anonymous caller that was following me for I would say about 6 miles for some apparent reason and decided to call t.p.d just as I was 2 blocks from my destination. And then all the rest of the same Ole rhetoric that indicates a d.u.i ?? And I felt refusing to b.a.c test wouldn't hurt me especially since t.p.d went to great measures to arrest me !!

Attorney Answers 4

  1. If you refused, the criminal case will have no bearing on the administrative side of the case. In other words you could take the case to jury trial, win and still have a refusal on your driving record from the administrative side of the case.

    The admin side is just as important to to fight as the criminal side. The traffic stop and many other issues are open for review with the administrative side.

    You should consult with a local attorney about the specifics. You only have 10 days from the arrest to preserve the admin side of your case.

    Best of luck. .

    Advice is general in nature. There is no lawyer client relationship based on answers to any questions.

  2. The short answer is the refusal is an administrative action and thus is separate and distinct from the criminal charge. When you refused you lost the license administratively. The fact that you beat the criminal charge is great but unfortunately you will be stuck with a "hardship" driver's license for the year assuming you did your hearing at the DMV? Feel free to call if you have any questions?

    DISCLAIMER: This answer is not legal advice nor does it create an attorney-client relationship between any user/reader and The Law Offices of Kassebaum, Robinson & Abelairas, P.A. We encourage and welcome you to contact us about your legal problems and visit our website at or email me at

  3. Both of my colleagues are correct. DMV-BAR is not court (unless you want to argue that its a Kangaroo Court) and the rules of evidence do not apply at DMV-BAR hearings. It is not a constitutional arena and you are not dealing with rights; rather it is an administrative arena which focuses on privileges (thus, due process applies, but man-o-man is it ever limited in scope). And, just like with Las Vegas, what happens at DMV-BAR stays at DMV-BAR (that is to say that winning or losing at DMV-BAR has no bearing on what happens in Court, and visa-verse).

    When you accept a FL/DL you agree to take a breath test if asked to do so, and if you refuse, or if you blow over the legal limit, then your "privilege" is revoked. They are required to afford you some form of due process before they revoke your driving privilege, so they give you a whomping 10 days to get your affairs in order and, if you pay for and request it, then another approximately 40 day window within which a{n alleged} hearing takes place and they determine if the suspension should be invalidated or sustained.

    The only (and I mean "only")issues that DMV-BAR addresses in the scope of its review is 1) whether the officer had probable cause to ask you to blow, 2) whether you blew and 3) whether you were informed of the consequences. That's it. Period paragraph. No pomp. No circumstance. Just extremely limited issues and tightly controlled questions and answers (by a Hearing Officer who is not trained in the law but who is thoroughly trained in the administrative code and process that s/he is directed - on pain of being fired - to follow to the tee). If the H/O decides that the officer had PC (whether rightly or wrongly), that you blew over or refused and that you were told of the consequences, then they will validate the suspension regardless of what happens in court; if they decide that any of their limited 3 issues has not been satisfied then they will invalidate the suspension - but that won't preclude a later suspension IF you ultimately fail win in Court.

    Bottom line: The only remedy you have is to appeal the DMV-BAR decision, and you are free to cite and argue the lack of PC issue until you are blue in the face. If your lawyer is tenacious enough, and if the facts and circumstances mitigate against the LEO having PC to have asked you to blow in the first place, then the appellate court can Order DMV-BAR to reinstate your DL. Unfortunately you have no other course of action whatsoever and are in DMV-BAR purgatory.

    (As an aside, a new law went into effect yesterday which essentially provides a way for folks to side-step the "hard-time" suspension of their FL/DL for DUI arrests, but in order to avail oneself of the new law one must first waive one's due process right to a formal review hearing.)

  4. Two parallel universes that don't affect one another, unfortunately.

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