Nobody plans for a DUI, but it happens to the best of us. Maybe you had to little too much with diner, or after work closing on a deal. You may have thought you were good to drive, and you might have been, but as little as 0.08 grams of alcohol in your system will have you behind bars for the night.
Common knowledge dictates you go to your one hearing and answer to your DUI charges. But, what many do not know is there are actually two hearings held seperately to determine two seperate legal issues governed by seperate bodies of law. The first hearing is a criminal hearing where you will answer to the misdemeanor offense of DUI. This is a criminal case in which the state of Georgia accuses you of the offense of DUI and you can face criminal penalties. This is the pricy one that sticks with you if you go at it unrepresetned.
The second, lesser known hearing is your Administrative Licesnce Suspencion Hearing or ALS Hearing; this is a civil non-criminal hearing. At this hearing the State represented by the Georgia Department of Drivers Services (DDS) along with your arresting officer attempts to prevent you from driving pending the outcome of the criminal case. This process begins after you are arrested for DUI when the arresting officer fills out a document called a “DDS Form 1205.”
From the date that you receive this form, you have ten (10) business days to request a hearing and thereby prevent the automatic suspension of your privileges to drive in the state of Georgia. If you do not request the hearing within ten (10) business days, your license to drive in Georgia will be suspended.
The ALS hearing is limited in scope. In the criminal case, the prosecutor must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt but, as mentioned above, an ALS hearing is civil in nature and the arresting officer only has to show the (Administrative Law Judge) ALJ, by a preponderance of the evidence, that certain factors existed.
Have more questions regarding your 10 day letter? Contact The Prado Law Firm Today!