People may be telling you to go to the DMV within 10 days.  What is this about?

When you were arrested for DUI, if your license was taken from you it is because it became suspended.  If you blew over a .08, it was suspended, or if you refused the breathalyzer it was suspended.  If you were arrested for DUI and blew under a .08 and provided a urine sample, it is likely your license was not confiscated or suspended and this information does not apply to you at this time.

Once your license is suspended for DUI based on breath results over the legal limit of .08 or refusing to submit to a breathalyzer test, within 10 days of the DUI arrest, you have a few options.


If you have never been convicted for DUI before, you may apply for a WAIVER REVIEW at the DHSMV or BAR (Bureau of Administrative Review) in the county where you received a DUI.  You must sign up for DUI School in the county where you reside, and bring proof of enrollment to the BAR within 10 days to the DHSMV (Department of Highway Safety Motor Vehicles) and petition for a hardship license.  The hearing costs $25.00.

If you are eligible, you will receive a hardship license.


While a waiver review is a great way to ensure your ability to drive for work purposes is not interrupted, you are giving up certain rights and should be aware of certain rights you are waiving by doing this.

If you opt for a waiver review, you waive your right to contest the suspension of your license.  If there is a potential defense to the suspension of your license, for example, your constitutional rights were violated, you waive the right to challenge this, including having an attorney subpoena and question law enforcement at a BAR hearing.  Speaking with an attorney experienced in DUI defense is important during this 10 day period.  There are times that a transcript of the BAR hearing can be used in your courtroom DUI defense, either at a motion to suppress or trial.  The BAR hearing statement is usually the only chance your attorney can question the law enforcement officer, under oath, about the facts and circumstances surrounding your DUI stop and investigation.  Florida law does not allow depositions in misdemeanors without prior court approval.  So in most cases, this BAR hearing is the only way your attorney can get the equivalent of a deposition.


If you opt out of a waiver review, your attorney can apply for a temporary permit within 10 days of your citation.  This will allow you to drive for business purposes only for 42 days.

During this 42 day period, your attorney will attend a formal review hearing to challenge the suspension of your license.  At this hearing, as mentioned in this article, your attorney will question the law enforcement officer, under oath, about the facts and circumstances surrounding your DUI investigation and arrest.

At the conclusion of your hearing, your attorney will argue to the BAR hearing officer that your driver license suspension should be invalidated and your driving privileges should be reinstated.  Because many such requests are denied, you need to be aware of what happens.

If the BAR hearing officer denies the request to invalidate the suspension and

YOU BLEW:  you are facing a 30 day suspension (hard suspension) of any driving privileges before you can apply for a hardship.

YOU REFUSED: you are facing a 90 day “hard suspension” (no driving for any reason) before you can apply for a hardship.

Hard suspension times begin the day after your 42 day temporary driving permit expires.

Although it is beneficial for your lawyer to get a sworn statement from law enforcement, you need to be aware of what happens if the request for invalidation of the suspension is denied.


Driving on a DUI citation.

If your driver’s license was valid at the time of your DUI, then likely you are able to drive on the DUI citation for 10 days.  Check the DUI citation to make sure.  The citation will usually have at the bottom a check mark stating that the driver license was surrendered and that you are eligible for a permit.  It may also have language at the bottom stating the citation is good to drive on for 10 days.

For the 10 day period, the citation allows you to drive for any purpose, business or personal.

The Civil process around your driver’s license following a DUI arrest can be complicated.  It is advisable to talk to an attorney knowledgeable in DUI defense to discuss the pros and cons of your choices.  Hamilton Law provides free evaluations.