5 years ago I was charged with DUI in WV. The charges were reduced to reckless driving. I got a letter from the WV DMV saying I had to take classes. When I called they said since I was a PA resident that I would have to call PA DMV to see what they wanted me to do. When I called PA they said they had no record of it so as far as they were concerned I didnt have to take any classes. I just moved to Ohio and tried to get a new licence but was flagged by WV. Will I have to take the classes and if so will I be able to take them somewhere in Ohio?
DUI / DWI Attorney
Every State has conditions on obtaining a license. Driving is considered a "privilege," not a "right" and as a result, you must comply with their wishes.
Although I am not licensed to practice law in either West Virginia or Ohio, my best guess is that you will be required to complete the classes in Ohio at a facility that is approved by West Virginia. Start off by contacting West Virginia D.O.T. (http://www.transportation.wv.gov/Pages/default.aspx) to make sure you understand what type of class they are requiring you to complete. Make sure you ask them if you may complete a similar class in Ohio.
Second, go to a local Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles office (http://www.bmv.ohio.gov/) and tell them what WV is requiring you to do. They should advise you of what course is the equivalent in Ohio and where the course can be taken.
Third, you should make sure that WV will accept the course as their equivalent by checking with WV before you take the course.
Then take the course and present the proof such as the certificate, letter, etc., to WV, pay their reinstatement/restoration fee if required, obtain roof of reinstatement/restoration and then present all of that to Ohio.
Unfortunately, you have some work to do, but it will be worth it to be able to drive legally once again. And remember, I recommend that you seek the advice of licensed attorneys in the State where you are having the difficulty(ies).
Best of luck!
DUI / DWI Attorney
In West Virginia, the criminal court and DMV/license court operate independently. Yes, you got your DUI reduced on criminal court side; however, you apparently lost the DMV side through either actual hearing or failure to timely request hearing. Being that this was five years ago, once you complete the license classes and pay your $50/$60 reinstatement fee to Charleston DMV you should be fully reinstated in our state. Thus, guaranteeing that any attempt at renewing home state license and/or lawfully driving within the borders of West Virginia are secured. For without class completion and reinstatement fee paid you will forever be suspended in our state and will never get home state license renewed if still suspended in another state for DUI related reasons. Feel free to email me at HWagner@WestVirginiaDUILawyers.com, advising what location of West Virginia you are closest too and I will provide you the course information. If you are beyond weekly driving distance to West Virginia, then you will need to contact our Charleston DMV headquarters, attention Driver Services, who can provide you with nearest acceptable / comparable course closest to you within your home state. The core class in West Virginia is once a week for six weeks, three hours at length, with numerous dates/hours choices. The classes are offered throughout our state at approved locations.
Harley O. Wagner, Esq.
The Wagner Law Firm
West Virginia's Premier DUI Defense Firm