Posted on January 10, 2014 by Jeffrey FeilerAs of July 1, 2013, the DUI Law in Florida has changed dramatically. The amended law changes the calculations of risk and benefit, both for breath test refusals and for breath tests over .08. When arrested for DUI, individuals can now choose whether or not to have an administrative hearing where driving privileges may be suspended. If you are a first-time DUI defendant, you will have to choose between two options on how you want to proceed:
- Administrative Hearing If you are willing to take the chance, we challenge your license suspension. Fortunately, the new DUI law in Florida makes hearings easier to win. If the hearing is lost, you have a 30-day hard-time (no driving of any kind) suspension for a test over .08, and a 90-day hard-time suspension for a refusal.
- No Administrative Hearing You give up your right to challenge your license suspension. Your license will be suspended for a year if you refused the breath test. Your license will be suspended for six months if you tested over .08.
Luckily, we can request the Arresting Officer and the Breath Test Operator to show up at the hearing. If they fail to show up, your license suspension is eliminated. Your license suspension is also eliminated if the officer is 15 minutes late. It is expected that this new law will result in a lot of license suspensions being overturned.
Since you waived your right to fight the suspension, you are eligible immediately for a Business Purpose Only (BPO) license, which allows you to drive to work, school, church, and the doctor. A drawback to this option is that you give up the chance to challenge your license suspension. Therefore, the suspension will always be on your record.
Although the system is very complicated, be smart! Under the new DUI law in Florida, if you have never been convicted or had your license suspended, it's recommended to refuse to take the breath test. Having an experienced lawyer in your corner is almost always necessary in order to avoid harsher penalties. Be sure to get in touch with an attorney as soon as possible after a DUI arrest.
Jeffrey Feiler is a well-known Miami Criminal Lawyer and Miami DUI Lawyer who has been successfully defending the rights of clients for over 30 years. Mr. Feiler and the Feiler Law Firm are compassionate to individual's needs, while simultaneously obtaining desired resolutions and judgments.
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