How to Request a 10 day ALS hearing
A DUI arrest does not necessarily mean a driver has to lose his or her license for a period of time. A limited driving permit is available in most circumstances. But if the process is done incorrectly, it can ruin the chance of legally driving while the DUI case is pending.
Form 1205When a DUI arrest is made, the officer will confiscate the driver's license whether the driver submits to the state administered breath test or not. In exchange for the license, the driver will receive a yellow piece of paper with the heading of Georgia Department of Driver's Services at the top. This yellow piece of paper serves as the temporary driver's permit for up to 30 days after the DUI arrest. The driver must carry this form with when driving just as one would a driver's license. After 30 days, this 1205 form is no longer a valid driver's permit.
ALS Hearing RequestIn order to drive legally for longer than 30 days while the DUI case is pending, the driver must "appeal" the license suspension. To appeal the suspension, the driver must first request an administrative license hearing commonly referred to as an ALS hearing. The request must be made within 10 business days of the arrest and must be in writing. The driver cannot wait until the 1205 Form suspension expires to request the hearing. If the hearing isn't requested properly and within the time frame, driving privileges can be suspended during the time the DUI case is pending. In order to request the hearing, the driver must send a form/letter to the DDS to the attention of the Administrative Unit at P.O. Box 80447, Conyers GA 30013. The form/letter may be sent through the Post Office but to be safe, it should be sent either certified or registered or another way to track and confirm the delivery and receipt. A $150.00 filing fee must also be included. The request will be denied and the temporary permit will expire after 30 days if the fee is not included with the original request for appeal. A hearing date will be sent in the mail to the address on file with DDS. If the current mailing address is not the same as the address on the driver's license, it should be updated immediately.
The ALS Form/LetterA driver may download the ALS hearing form off the Department of Driver's Services Website (see link below) or write his or her own letter. However, the letter must include all the necessary information requested on the form, including the driver's name, current mailing address, Georgia Driver's License Number, date of birth, phone number, date of the violation and date of the arrest (even if both are the same day), the law enforcement agency issuing the citation, the police officer's name and badge number who issued the citation, the reason for contesting the citation and any witnesses planned to be called on the driver's behalf at the hearing. The reasons for contesting the citation may include that the officer acted unlawfully when stopping, detaining and/or arresting the driver, the officer did not properly administer the implied consent information, the breath test equipment was not properly administered, maintained or updated, the proper forms were not completed and/or forwarded to the appropriate parties, or other reasons why the driver's rights were violated during the DUI arrest and license suspension process. Also, the name and contact information for any witnesses who may testify at this hearing on the driver's behalf must be given at this time. If not included, that witness will not be allowed to testify (in most circumstances). In an abundance of caution, the driver should always be named as a possible witness at the hearing whether or not he/she plans to testify. If the name and contact information is provided, that witness does not have to testify if it is determined unnecessary or inadvisable.
The ALS HearingAt the hearing, several outcomes may occur. First, the arresting officer may not appear in court and a request to withdraw the suspension should be made to the judge. If the judge withdraws the suspension, the driver's license is valid until the outcome of the DUI case. Second, the officer may appear and negotiate with the driver to withdraw the suspension. For example, the officer may agree to withdraw the suspension in exchange for a promise by the driver to plead guilty to the DUI at the later hearing date. Or, the officer may agree to withdraw the suspension in exchange for the driver to complete a driving class or complete other requirements. Lastly, the driver and/or the officer may not be willing to negotiate and a hearing is held. The hearing will be recorded and held in the normal format of a legal proceeding with witnesses being called and evidence presented. After the hearing, the Judge will make a determination as to whether the license suspension is upheld or overturned.