Conroe ALR Hearing Lawyer
Administrative License Revocation Hearings & DWI
How long do you have to request a hearing?
Once you are arrested for
driving while intoxicated (DWI) or other intoxication offense the law enforcement officer is required to
give you written notice that your license will be suspended. Generally
this is done at the scene of the arrest or once you are placed in the
officer’s vehicle. The officer will often read aloud the notice.
Once the officer gives you the written notice, the clock starts ticking.
You have 15 days from the time notice is given to request your administrative
license revocation hearing (ALR hearing). Your request must be in writing
and sent to the
Department of Public Safety in Austin, Texas.
Occasionally, the officer will not give you the notice at the time of arrest.
If that happens, DPS will mail the notice to you. Again, you will have
15 days from the time you receive notice to request a hearing. If you
did not receive notice either in person or by mail you should immediately
contact DPS and a
Conroe DWI defense attorney to preserve your right to fight your driving privileges.
What if you do not request a hearing?
If you do not request a hearing within 15 days, you waive your right to
a hearing. DPS will then suspend your Texas driver’s license 40
days after you were given written notice of the suspension.
What must the State prove at the ALR hearing?
Breath/Blood Alcohol Test Refusal Case, the State must prove by a preponderance of evidence that:
- The law enforcement officer had reasonable suspicion to stop you or probable
cause to arrest you;
- The law enforcement officer had probable cause that you operated a motor
vehicle in a public place while intoxicated or operating a watercraft
powered with an engine having a manufacturer’s rating of 50 horsepower
or above while intoxicated;
- You were placed under arrest and the law enforcement officer offered you
an opportunity to provide a specimen of breath or blood under the provisions
of Tex. Trans. Code Ann. Ch. 724; and
- You refused to provide a specimen on request of the officer.
In a Breath/Blood Alcohol Test Failure Case the State must prove by a preponderance
of evidence that:
- You had an alcohol concentration of a level specified in Section 49.01
Texas Penal Code, while operating a motor vehicle in a public place; and
- The law enforcement officer had reasonable suspicion to stop you or had
probable cause to arrest or take you into custody.
Can you win the ALR hearing?
ALR hearings can be won if handled by an experienced DWI lawyer. Attorney
Doug Atkinson has successfully defended many clients at ALR hearings and
prevented their licenses from being suspended. The State of Texas has
numerous attorneys on staff whose sole duty is to conduct ALR hearings.
Attorney Atkinson has conducted hundreds of ALR hearings with outstanding
success. He will carefully review the facts, the offense report, and the
video tape evidence. He will then use that evidence to fight for your
license. In many cases, he has had the case thrown out by the judge because
the law enforcement officer did not have reasonable suspicion to stop
the vehicle or did not establish probable cause of the driver's intoxication.
If you have been charged with
DWI in Conroe or a surrounding area, do not hesitate to contact Attorney Atkinson!
Aside from protecting your license, the ALR hearing is also important because
it is recorded. The cross examination of the law enforcement officer can
be very beneficial to the DWI trial. The officer is locked in to his testimony
and the ALR record can be used to impeach him during the criminal trial.
Can you appeal the ALR decision/suspension?
If you lose the ALR hearing, you have the right to appeal the decision.
You must do so within 30 days of the court’s decision becoming final
otherwise your appeal will be waived.
What about your license if you lose the ALR hearing?
You can file for an
Occupational Driver’s License. This license will give you the ability to drive during the suspension
conditioned on certain requirements.
What are the suspension lengths for adult offenders?
If you refused to provide a breath or blood specimen following an arrest
for an offense prohibiting the operation of a motor vehicle or watercraft
while intoxicated, while under the influence of alcohol, or under the
influence of a controlled substance the suspensions are as follows:
180 day suspension - First offense
2 year suspension - If previously suspended for failing or refusing a specimen test or previously
suspended for a DWI, Intoxication Assault or intoxication manslaughter
conviction during the 10 years preceding the date of arrest.
If you provided a specimen with an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or greater,
following an arrest for an offense under section 49.04, 49.07, or 49.08
Penal Code, involving the operation of a motor vehicle, the suspensions
are as follows:
90 day suspension - First offense
1 year suspension - If previously suspended for failing or refusing a specimen test or previously
suspended for a DWI, Intoxication Assault or Intoxication Manslaughter
conviction during the 10 years preceding the date of arrest.
Are there fees associated with losing my driver’s license at the
Losing an ALR hearing is expensive and frustrating. First, your license
is suspended for up to 2 years. Second, if you drive during the period
of suspension you will risk being pulled over by police and arrested for
DWLS (driving while license suspended) which is a class B misdemeanor
offense, carrying a punishment of up to 180 days in jail and up to a $2,000.00
fine. If convicted of DWLS your license will be suspended even longer.
Third, to drive legally you will need to obtain an occupational license.
Occupational licenses are expensive and limiting. An occupational license
will involve filing fees, reinstatement fees, SR22 insurance expenses,
and alcohol counseling - easily costing over $1,000.00. Fourth, an occupational
license by law can only give you up to 12 hours a day to drive within
designated counties. If you drive outside the hours or counties you can
be arrested for DWLS. Fifth, you can only drive for legally permissible
reasons including your occupation. It is in your best interest to hire
an attorney who is experienced in ALR hearings to fight a loss of your license.
Contact a Skilled Conroe DWI Attorney
If you have been charged with DWI, and you have not scheduled your ALR
hearing, you should move quickly to involve an experienced lawyer. A legal
professional can review your case, inform you of your legal options, and
represent you at your hearing in order to protect your license and prepare
for your criminal case.