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What is the effect in California DMV of an out-of-state administrative license suspension but no court-ordered action?

Thousand Oaks, CA |

My client is a California resident & driver with a California license. She was arrested for DUI in Florida and they took her California license. The Florida DMV administratively suspended her license, but there has been no court action yet -- we suspect it will get knocked down to reckless with no court-ordered suspension. The Fla. admin suspension has prevented her from getting a replacement Cal. license. Can she contest or appeal that based on the fact that Florida has only entered an administrative suspension and not a court-ordered suspension or conviction? (I'm a fellow Avvo attorney, but I don't do any DUI or criminal law at all! I'll refer my client if you think a Cali attorney who specializes in this can help her.)

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Attorney answers 1


I might be able to help her--the Florida DUI statute is broader than our DUI statute. In CA, at least under the current law, there must be actual driving (with some exceptions). The DUI statute in Florida, on the other hand, includes merely being in actual physical control of a vehicle. There may be a possibility of filing a Writ to contest CA's action, but there is also a neat trick that the FL lawyer can possibly do to make the CA problem(s) go away.
Normally cops are not supposed to seize a license from an out of state driver, but sometimes they do. I would need more information, but you are welcome to call my office tomorrow afternoon and we can talk about this. -Mindy McQueen (805) 482-1961