Written by attorney David Ashley Haenel

Can I still drive after I lose my license following a DUI arrest in Sarasota?

One of the biggest questions drivers have following a DUI arrest is, "Can I still drive after I lose my license following a DUI arrest in Sarasota?" For those who have been arrested for a DUI, law enforcement officials will require you to surrender your license immediately. Law enforcement officials take your license away immediately because, according to Florida state law, a driver's license suspension occurs at the time of the arrest. At this point, the driver will receive a driving permit.

In Sarasota, drivers are permitted to continue using their driver's license and operating a vehicle for up to 10 days if their license was valid at the time of the arrest. At the time of the arrest, the officer will provide the driver with a citation which acts as their 10 day driving permit. This 10-day period of time allows the driver to challenge their license suspension. This 10-day right to drive is granted so the offender may continue driving in order to get back and forth to work.

There are specific steps drivers must take following their DUI arrest in order to keep driving:

  • Apply for a formal hearing: during the 10-day period of time, in addition to still being able to drive, a formal hearing must be set up in order to challenge the suspension.
  • Hire an attorney: the attorney will help the driver challenge the suspension and, if the proper evidence is shown, the suspension could be lifted altogether.
  • Obtain a hardship license: it's possible you may be eligible for a hardship license that would allow you to continue driving in order to maintain basic life needs. These needs include continuing to get back and forth to work, running errands, and taking care of your children.

Will You Lose This Right to Drive?

Remember, you only have a ten days to hire a lawyer and request an administrative hearing. If you fail to do so, you are automatically waiving your right to a hearing with the DMV. So, once the ten day period expires, you will not be allowed to drive. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to aggressively work toward achieving these goals within the timeframe allotted to you. Search the Internet, phone books, and for word of mouth references when generating a list of attorneys right away because it might take a few days to meet with them for a consultation.

What Happens if the Charges are Revoked?

The officer's report will go directly to the DMV for review and, if they find that there is no cause for the license suspension, then the case could be thrown out before reaching the court room. However, if a court appearance is required and the suspension is revoked by the judge, then the driver must pay a fee in order to have their license reinstated. This reinstatement fee is up to $125 and is paid to the DMV. In addition to that, the Sarasota defense attorney may also state that you must pay a proof of financial responsibility filing fee, which is up to $100 for drivers' ages twenty-one and over.

Additional resources provided by the author

Finebloom & Haenel, P.A. 200 North Washington Blvd. Sarasota, Fl 34236 (941) 952-2622

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