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If you are stopped for driving under the influence and you blood or breath alcohol level is .08 or above or if you refuse to take a test to determine the amount of alcohol in your system, the officer will take your license and you will receive a DUI citation.

The citation will allow you to drive for 10 days. During those 10 days you have the right to challenge this administrative suspension of your license through the Department of Highway Safety & Motor Vehicles (DHSMV).  You only have 10 days from the date the police and you take your license to challenge the suspension NOT 10 business days, 10 calendar days. If you took the breath test and blew .08 or above and applied for a hearing your ability to drive will be extended an additional 42 days.

Basically, you have three options following a DUI arrest if you have no prior DUI convictions, administrative suspensions or convictions for an alcohol or drug related offense:

  1. Request a “formal review hearing, if your driver's license was valid at the time of ofthe stop the department will be given or you may obtain an extension that will allow you to drive for 42 days or until the administrative hearing is held. If you lose the formal hearing, and you took the breath, blood or urine test, you will suffer a hard suspension of your driving privilege for 30 days before you may apply for a hardship license. If you refused the test you will suffer a hard suspension for 90 days, if this is your first DUI, before you may apply for a hardship license. In either case you must be enrolled in DUI school before applying for a hardship license.

  2. Request an informal review hearing which is conducted without witnesses. The hearing officer will decide based up the officer's reports.

  3. Enroll in DUI school and go to the DHSMV to agree to the administrative suspension. By waiving any review hearing in exchange for immediate reinstatement of hardship privileges to avoid a 30-day hard suspension if you took the test or 90-day hard suspension if you refused to take the test. (only available if you have no prior DUI arrest, suspension, revocation, or conviction). If you have a prior refusal, in your life time, to take the breath, blood or urine test you are NOT eligible for a hardship license.


Put Mr. Rutkowski's twenty-seven years experience practicing in the areas of Criminal Defense, Criminal Appeals, DUI, BUI & Criminal Traffic. Contact Mr. Rutkowski today for a free telephone consultation.


3941 Tamiami Trail Suite 3157-211 Punta Gorda FL 33950