How Do I Reinstate My License After a DC DUI Conviction?

A likely consequence of a DC DUI conviction is the suspension or revocation of your license.  In the District of Columbia, if you are convicted for a DUI, the DMV will automatically initiate procedures against you to either suspend or revoke your driver’s license.  The DC DMV takes this step regardless of whether you are actually convicted of the DUI.  We have previously discussed tips for preventing the license suspension while the case is pending.  If you ultimately get convicted, there is virtually no way around suspension.  If your license has been suspended or revoked in the District, there are important things to know to reinstate your driving privileges.

First, you must wait to reinstate your license after the suspension time or revocation period has ended.  What this means is that you are not eligible for reinstatement within a certain period of time after your arrest, and the time period varies depending on whether you submitted to or refused to take the breathalyzer test during your arrest.

If you submitted to the test, your license will be suspended or revoked for 6 months for a first offense, 1 year for a second offense, and 2 years for a third offense.  If you refused to take the test, your license will be automatically suspended or revoked for 1 year regardless of how many DUIs you have had in the past.  Once your suspension time or revocation period has ended, the next step you take depends on whether your license was either (A) suspended or (B) revoked.

If your license was suspended, you have to pay the $98 reinstatement fee online through the DMV website.  You must also pay any other fees associated with your DMV record including unpaid parking tickets, traffic violation tickets, child support, and vehicle insurance lapses.  Once you’ve paid all the fees, your license will be reinstated if you have also completed a Traffic Alcohol Program.

If your license was revoked, you must attend an in-person reinstatement hearing.  At this hearing, you must show provide proof that you have completed a substance abuse course.  The course must be certified by the District’s Department of Behavioral Health.  Once the DMV determines that you may reinstate your license, actually reinstating your license after it has been revoked involves more steps than mentioned above for reinstating a suspended license.

Finally, to reinstate your license after it has been revoked, you must go through all of the steps of getting a license.  These steps include (A) taking the driving knowledge test; (B) getting a driver’s permit; (C) taking the driving road test; and (D) getting a driver’s license.  To successfully complete this process, you must pay the fees associated with each step, the reinstatement fee, and any other fees associated with your DMV record.

In the unfortunate event that your license has been suspended or revoked, it is imperative that you hire a skilled DC DUI lawyer to help you reinstate your license.  At Scrofano Law PC, we understand that your driving privileges are important to you and we will advocate on your behalf every step of the way to ensure that you get your life back.  If you or someone you know has lost their license due to a DUI, call Scrofano Law PC immediately for a consultation.  And remember: if arrested for a DUI, before you blow, call Joe!