Administrative License Revocation

When pulled over by the police on suspicion of driving while intoxicated, or any routine traffic stop in Texas, a driver may be asked to submit to a breath or blood test. If the person blows into a breathalyzer machine, or has blood drawn and is found to have an blood alcohol level over the legal limit, or if they refuse to submit to the test, there is an administrative penalty in addition to the Driving While Intoxicated charge.

This additional penalty is called Administrative License Revocation (ALR) and results in the suspension of your Texas Driver’s License, administratively. This can happen within 15 days of police detecting a concentration of alcohol in your blood stream that’s beyond the legal limit or the refusal of sobriety testing, often before the DWI case even goes to court.

Texas Driver License Suspension Can Be Avoided

The good news: there is some recourse for individuals to avoid this penalty by requesting a hearing within 15 days of the arrest. Attorney Amber Spurlock normally attends these hearings for the benefit of her clients and has had success in keeping her clients on the road.

If no hearing is requested, the suspension and required reinstatement fee will stand. ALR suspensions can last anywhere from 6 months to 2 years, and those who carry commercial driver’s licenses, like truck drivers, have a mandatory one year suspension, regardless of whether or not it is a first incident.

Boating & Driving While Intoxicated Results in ALR

ALR rules hold valid for boating and driving. If you receive a suspension for refusing or failing the sobriety test on a boat, your driver’s license to operate a car or truck will be suspended. After the suspension period is over, a $125 dollar reinstatement fee is required by the Texas Department of Public Safety, just for the ALR suspension. This is in addition to any penalties, suspensions or fines incurred if you are convicted of DWI.

Texas law states that a person does not have the right to consult an attorney before taking a blood or breath test, as consent is given to the testing when you agree to the privilege of driving. This is referred to as “applied consent”.

Challenging Administrative License Revocation

There are, however, many reasons why challenging the Administrative License Revocation is a prudent idea. Having a legal hearing with a lawyer present can help a person’s case when they go to court for the Driving While Intoxicated or Driving While Impaired charge. The refusal or failure of the breath or blood test is held against the driver and helps the prosecutor win their case. If the ALR suspension is overturned, the criminal case against the defendant is harder to prove.

When a person refuses the sobriety test, their license is physically taken away on the spot at the arrest. They are given a paper temporary license and 40 days to get their life in order before their driving privilege is suspended.

Many individuals depend on driving for travel to work, medical appointments, and other important errands. Losing your Texas Driver License can result in loss of income and perhaps loss of a job if a valid driver’s license is required for employment.

You May Qualify for an Occupational License

An Occupational License can be arranged through special application; however, it requires you to prove you need the hardship license, and it requires you to carry special SR22 insurance, raising your insurance premiums.

Hold a CDL? The Stakes are Raised

Commercial drivers who depend on their license for their livelihood cannot afford a black mark like an ALR on their driving record, and will be off the road for a mandatory year. A person who holds a CDL license will have their CDL license suspended, even if they were arrested while driving a regular car during non-work hours.

Being arrested for Driving While Intoxicated is a difficult, potentially life-changing experience. Having an Administrative License Revocation on top of it can be a nightmare.

Galveston Attorney Amber Spurlock will Fight For You

Consult Attorney Amber Spurlock, an experienced Galveston DWI lawyer, as soon as you’re arrested to have an Administrative License Revocation hearing requested within the 15 day window. Galveston DWI Defender Amber Spurlock will go over your case to review certain factors, such as the environment of the arrest, police adherence to procedure, and other factors that can affect not only the ALR hearing, but the criminal case as well.

With a DWI focused attorney on your side you’ll stand a better chance at winning your case and/or reducing the impact the conviction will have on your life. A highly qualified DWI defense lawyer, Amber Spurlock fights hard for her clients. We’ll make sure your license is not unjustly suspended and will use the discovery information at the ALR hearing for your benefit. Due to the complexity of DWI offenses in addition to avoiding Texas Driver’s License suspension, having a the right attorney at your side, right from the beginning, is the best way to move forward.

Related Resources

State Office of Administrative Hearings
Administrative License Revocation (ALR) Program
(ALR) Hearing Requests – Texas Department of Public Safety