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What is a restricted license after a California DUI?

A restricted license allows individuals to drive under special circumstances. Most restricted license in California involves getting partial driving privileges back after a drunk driving arrest or conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI)(DWI).

There may be a number of possible requirements for drivers to get a restricted license after a DUI, including:

There are different restrictions that are available including:

  • Limited driving to and from employment
  • Limited driving to take kids to school
  • Limited driving for medical treatment

Do I have to stop driving immediately after a DUI arrest?

In most cases, after a DUI arrest, you will have a temporary driving permit that allows you to drive for 30 days. When the police arrest a driver on suspicion of drunk driving, they generally take away the driver's license and give them a pink sheet of paper that acts as a temporary license.

Drivers can fight the automatic suspension by requesting an APS hearing with the DMV. Notice, you only have 10 days from the date of arrest to request a DMV hearing. Talk to your California DUI defense lawyer as soon as possible and your lawyer can request the hearing and appear on your behalf to try and fight the suspension. If you have requested a hearing within 10 days after your arrest, there is a stay of any suspension and you can drive without any restriction until the DMV hearing and/or court case has been resolved.

What kind of restricted license can I get after a DUI in California?

After a drunk driving arrest or conviction, the driver's license will be administratively suspended by the DMV. Generally, after a DUI suspension, drivers can get a restricted license that allows for limited driving, or an IID restriction.

If a driver refused a chemical test after an arrest, there may be fewer options for a restricted license or the driver will have to wait longer before they can get a restricted license.

Drivers arrested for a DUI involving drugs are generally not eligible for an IID restricted license.

How do I get an immediate restricted license to drive to work or school after a DUI arrest?

To get a restricted license, the driver has to install an ignition interlock device, obtain and file an SR-22 certificate of financial responsibility with the DMV, show enrollment in a DUI class, fill out the restricted license form, and pay any associated fees.

How do I get an IID license to drive after a DUI in California?

The laws on IIDs in California changed as of January 1, 2019. IIDs were previously part of a pilot program and are now generally available to all drivers convicted of a DUI in California.

Drivers can immediately apply for an IID-restricted license after a DUI is installed and proof is submitted to the DMV. There is no mandatory waiting/suspension period before a driver can get an IID installed.

The IID period is based on the DUI charge, as follows:

  • 1st DUI: 6-month IID
  • 2nd DUI: 1-year IID
  • 3rd DUI: 2-year IID
  • 4th or subsequent offense DUI: 3-year IID

Can I drive to court for my DUI hearing?

If your license is not suspended, you can generally drive to the court for any DUI hearings, subject to any restrictions on your license. However, you cannot drive anywhere, including to or from the court, if your license is suspended. The police may be waiting to arrest the individual for driving on a suspended license when driving out of the courthouse parking lot.

What happens if I'm caught driving in violation of a restricted license?

Driving in violation of a restricted license could result in getting your license suspended, with no restricted license available. It could also result in criminal charges and lead to fines and possible jail time.

Contact East Bay DUI Attorney Lynn Gorelick

East Bay attorney Lynn Gorelick has more than 30 years of DUI experience and understands how difficult it can for individuals in California to lose their driving privileges after a DUI. Representing drivers across Contra Costa and Alameda counties, Lynn Gorelick is familiar with the local DUI laws, DMV hearings, and the local officers and prosecutors involved. Contact East Bay DUI lawyer Lynn Gorelick today.

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