What are my options after a DWI Arrest? Will my license really be suspended?
Texas Law provides for a drivers license to be suspended when arrested for a DWI. That means that during the months (or even years) or a pending DWI case, an individual's driver???s license will be suspended.
At a DWI stop, once the officer has decided there is probable cause to make an arrest for DWI, he or she will generally hand to the accused a notice of termination and temporary driver's license. After being arrested on a DWI, the temporary license is valid only for a short period of time, after which you may be arrested on new charges if you drive without a valid Texas License.
The notice of DWI, even in the arrest or arraignment stages, will be sent to the DWI and processed through their databases, with the information of your license suspension making its way into the courts and law enforcement systems.
DPS will institute a DPS ALR hearing on your driver's license within 10 days of the notice. The hearing is not a criminal proceeding, but rather is Administrative, meaning there are fewer rights an accused has within the context of the hearing. Procedurally, the hearing is quite different from a trial, requiring less than the 'beyond a reasonable doubt' standard in order to suspend your license.
There is no requirement that you be present at the DPS ALR hearing, therefore, the hearing may proceed in your absence. Without you or an attorney at the hearing to defend your rights and present the full story, the administrative DPS ALR panel will typically suspend the license. Because the hearing is a mere ten days after arrest, it is imperative that you contact an attorney as soon as you can after being arrested. Often times, an attorney can appear at the DPS ALR hearing and possibly save your driver's license.
***You may be able to drive legally on an occupational license, even if you owe thousands of dollars in surcharges. ***