Getting your drivers license back after a revocation or suspension by the Secretary of State is necessary so that you can get back on the road. If you have lost your Michigan Driver’s License, we can get it back. If you live in another state and need to clear a hold on your license, we can do it. After multiple DUI’s the secretary of state will revoke your license. The only way to get it back is through a process called a license restoration. Our top-rated criminal defense attorneys have been restoring licenses in the Lansing area and throughout all of Michigan for over 20 years.
As you know, without a license your life changes drastically. Our society is ordered around the vehicle and the ability drive. Without a license or the ability to drive, the simplest activities can become a nightmare. Going work, going to the grocery store, taking your kids to school, or simply going out to the movies can be a near impossibility. To participate meaningfully in our society without having to rely on others for rides requires a driver’s license. Don’t wait longer than you must. The ability to drive is important and will pay dividends in your life. Changing your life begins with getting back on the road.
The Process of Restoring Your License
In Michigan, driving is seen as a privilege and not an absolute right. Consequently, after multiple DUI’s the State can take away or revoke your license. If you have had 2 DUI’s in 7 years, then the Michigan Secretary of State (SOS) will make you wait 1 year before you can reinstate your license. If you have had 3 or more DUI’s in 10 years, then the SOS will make you wait at least 5 years before you can re-apply.
There are certain things that The State of Michigan requires before they will reinstate your license. To make sure these standards are met they require that you go through a complex application procedure and a thorough hearing in front of a hearing officer.
Through this application and hearing the standards that must be demonstrated by clear and convincing evidence are:
- That your alcohol or substance abuse problems are under control and will remain that way.
- That there is a low or minimal risk that you will abuse drugs or narcotics or go back to the behavior that got your license suspended in the first place.
- That there is a low or minimal risk that you will commit another DUI or other drinking and driving offense (or driving under the influence of controlled substances).
- That you have the motivation to drive safely and within the law
- That you have not consumed alcohol or controlled substances (except for valid proscriptions) for at least 6 consecutive months. However, if there is evidence that you have relapsed you must prove a period of abstinence of 1 year.
These are rigorous standards and are not easily proved. If you put yourself in the shoes of the hearing officer, how would you determine if someone had meet theses standards and by clear and convincing evidence? It’s not an easy answer. Luckily, we don’t have to guess what hearing officers want to see and how we should go about proving that you deserve your license back. When you want to get your license back you must do the following:
- Fill out an application covering numerous categories regarding your past driving, your past substance abuse, and your past convictions.
- Submit a substance use evaluation performed by qualified and licensed practitioner that includes the information that is promulgated by the Secretary of State.
- This substance use evaluation must be accompanied by a current urinalysis drug screen.
- Present at minimum three support letters from persons that you know in the community regarding your behavior towards alcohol or controlled substances
- Present proof of past treatment programs
- Submit proof of attendance at past and or current support programs.
- All other relevant evidence demonstrating your behavior and abstinence from alcohol and controlled substances.
These items are crucial for your success at receiving your license back. However, it is necessary that all this information is consistent and presented in a way that puts your situation in the best light. Simply checking off the boxes so to speak won’t necessarily guarantee good results. Making sure your evidence is thorough and persuasive is the only way to make sure that you can get your license and get back on the road.
a After you have submitted all your evidence along with your application you will be scheduled for hearing. At the hearing, the hearing officer will ask numerous questions about your life, about your substance abuse history, and about everything in between. While the hearing office doesn’t really look like a courtroom, it might as well be. The hearing officer works like prosecutor performing a through cross examination. This hearing officers hear upwards of six cases each day and know all the tricks in the book and can tell a genuine case from a fake. Consequently, it is very important to know the types of questions you will face and be prepared to answer all of them. Having an attorney in your corner that helped you prepare and who is sitting next to you can not be underestimated.
Putting In The Work To Get It Right
After all is said and done, the hearing officer will make a decision on your case. Often times the hearing officer will rule right on the spot, other times a thoughtful written opinion will be mailed to you. In any case, the decision is final unless you attempt to appeal the decision the circuit court or wait to reapply after another protracted wait. This whole process of application through the hearing is a lot of work and can take a lot of your time an energy.
If getting your license back is worth it, it is worth doing it right. As you can see this can be a complex and sometimes daunting task. However, getting it done the right way and the first time can be the difference between another year lost and one spent on the road getting your life back on track. We have been helping people get their driver’s license for decades. Let us help you restore your license and your life.