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If you have been charged with DUI in Florida, you are probably anxiously awaiting the opportunity to reinstate your driver’s license if it has been suspended. In Florida, like everywhere else, drinking and driving is taken very seriously. If you had blood alcohol content of .08 or above, odds are you’ve had your license suspended. You’ve hopefully learned your lesson, paid your fees and fines, and are ready to get back on the road: so how do you get your suspended driver’s license reinstated after a Florida DUI? This article is for some guidance only and should not be used as a substitute for you seeking professional legal advice from a Florida licensed attorney competent to handle DUI and driver’s licensing matters, who will be able to review the facts and specify the consequences for you and your case.

1. Figure Out Your Time Frame for Suspension

Everybody’s case is different. Depending on how many DUI’s you’ve been convicted of, and the time frame in which they happened, it’s going to take varying amounts of time for you to get back on the road with a valid license. Here are just a few scenarios*:

  • With your first DUI conviction, your license may be suspended for 180 days to 1 year.
  • For a second DUI conviction within five years of the first one, your license may be suspended for five years.
  • With a third DUI conviction within 10 years of the previous two, your license may be suspended for 10 years.

Whatever your particular case is, make sure you’re aware of the suspension period. This way, you can reinstate your license as soon as possible. If you’re not sure what the current status of your license is, check your Florida driving records*. This information should also be listed on the notification letter you received from the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles initially detailing your suspension.

2. Check Your Eligibility for a “Hardship” License Reinstatement

We know how losing your license can have a huge impact on various areas of your life. When losing your license means you can no longer work at your job, you may be able to obtain eligibility for a “hardship” license reinstatement. Also known as a restricted license, this will allow you to use your license to drive to certain work or business-related activities.

If at all possible, apply for this restricted license before your suspension period is over. Although the license is limited, it can help you get back on your feet and prepare for the future. To apply for this, get in touch with the DMV Office* for your county of residence. If you are granted a restricted license, you may have to install an ignition interlock device (IID) on your vehicle (more on that later). You may also have to complete a DUI program*.

3. Cover All Your Bases

Before you can reinstate your license, you need to make sure you’ve covered all of your bases. As part of your conviction or alternative disposition of your criminal case, there may have been certain requirements you must complete before getting back on the road. Though everybody’s case is unique, it’s possible you might have to do the following:

  • Prove you have bodily injury liability insurance.
  • Complete an approved DUI Program.
  • Complete community service hours, if mandated.
  • Attend all the court dates of your case.
  • In the case of a criminal DUI conviction, pay all extra fees or serve all probation time necessary.
  • Pay off all fees and fines associated with the conviction.

Go over all the terms of your conviction and sentencing and follow each edict to the letter. Make sure to collect all relevant paperwork and receipts for payments you’ve made or DUI Programs or treatment you’ve attended.

4. Get an Interlock Device for Your Vehicle: IID Laws in Florida

Depending on your situation, you may have to have an Ignition Interlock Device* (IID) installed in your vehicle. An ignition interlock device is a breathalyzer installed in your vehicle that measures the level of alcohol in your breath. Connected directly to your vehicle’s ignition system, you are required to blow into the attached mouthpiece to test your Breath Alcohol Concentration (BrAC). If you have too much alcohol in your system, the IID will prevent your vehicle from starting.

If you get a quality product like a Draeger ignition interlock device, it will be fast and accurate, able to differentiate between consumption alcohol and things like mouthwash which contain trace amounts of alcohol.

5. Fill Out Forms & Pay Fees

Once you’ve completed the previous steps— and checked to make sure you’ve done everything your conviction or criminal case disposition requires of you—you can get started in earnest. First, you need to find out where your local DMV office* is depending on your county of residence. Then, you need to make sure you pay all fees, which include an administrative fee*, a revocation reinstatement fee*, and a license fee* which is determined by your driving class. In addition to the fees, make sure you bring in proof of bodily injury liability insurance. Before you get started, it’s a good idea to call your local DMV office if you have any additional questions or concerns.

We know how having your license suspended in Florida is a huge deal. However, by following these steps and adapting them to your specific conviction and situation, you’ll be so much closer to getting your license reinstated. At Draeger, we’re here to help with our Florida-approved Ignition Interlock Devices. If you want to get your license reinstated after a DUI in Florida and to do so are required to install an ignition interlock device, contact us today to see how we may assist with our Draeger ignition interlock device.

*Links to any third-party websites herein are provided for your reference and convenience only. Dräger did not create nor develop, and does not own, any such third-party website. Dräger does not endorse nor support the content of, nor any opinions stated in, any such third-party website links. Dräger is not responsible for the content of any third-party website or its accuracy. Nothing contained in this article or in any such third-party website shall be considered legal advice or be deemed to constitute legal advice. For any legal advice concerning a DUI arrest, charge, conviction or consequences thereof, you should contact an attorney of your choice.

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