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Consequences for drinking & driving. Losing your driver’s license from DUI / DWI charges.

You can suffer numerous consequences for drunk driving, and one of them is the loss of your driver's license for a period of time or having it revoked or cancelled.

If you are convicted of a DWI your license is revoked by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety. In certain situations, however, you can obtain a work permit and are not completely denied your driving privileges.

The following is a list of revocation periods and cancellations relating to DWI arrest. You can also visit www.mndriveinfo.org for more information.

Periods of revocation can occur under the following circumstances:

  • If the driver has no prior DWI / DUI convictions and no prior alcohol-related driver's license revocations and the driver submitted to a BAC test;
  • Provided the test was between .08 and .15 the period of revocation is 90 days,
  • Provided the test result was over .16, the individual has no prior convictions, and the period of revocation is not less than one (1) year;
  • If the driver has one (1) prior DWI / DUI conviction or alcohol-related driver's license revocations within the last 10 years and submitted to testing;
  • Provided the test was between .08 and .15, the period of revocation is not less than one (1) year;
  • Provided the test result was over twice the legal limit .16, the period of revocation will not be less than two (2) years;
  • If the driver has two qualified prior impaired driving incidents, regardless of time, the revocation will be for not less than one year;
  • For a person with two qualified prior impaired driving incidents within the past ten years, or three qualified prior impaired driving incidents, for a period of not less than three years;
  • For a person with three qualified prior impaired driving incidents within the past ten years, for a period of not less than four years;
  • For a person with four qualified prior impaired driving incidents, for a period not less than six years.

Periods of revocation due to refusal to submit to a chemical test occur under the following circumstances:

  • If the driver has no prior DWI / DUI convictions and no prior alcohol-related driver's license revocations and the driver refused to submit to a blood alcohol concentration test, the period of revocation is one (1) year;
  • For a person with one qualified prior impaired driving incident within the past ten years, or two qualified prior impaired driving incidents, for a period of not less than two (2) years;
  • For a person with two qualified prior impaired driving incident within the past ten years, or three qualified prior impaired driving incidents, for a period of not less than three years; a person may also have to complete rehabilitation according to standards established by the Commissioner;
  • For a person with three qualified prior impaired driving incidents within the past ten years, for a period of not less than four years, you will also be required to complete rehabilitation as defined by the Commissioner; or
  • For a person with four or more qualified prior impaired driving incidents, for a period of not less than six (6) years.

Driver's license cancellations.
In order for you to completely lose your driver's license, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety will cancel your driver's license when you are convicted of a DWI. This consequence completely denies any of your driving privileges and means you are not entitled to a work permit.

Cancellation occurs under the following circumstances:

  • If the driver has two (2) prior DUI convictions or two (2) prior alcohol-related driver's license revocations within the last 10 years, and the driver refused to submit to a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test, the period of cancellation will be three (3) years

If the driver has two (2) prior DUI convictions or two (2) prior alcohol-related driver's license revocations within the last 10 years, and submitted to a blood alcohol concentration test the period of cancellation will be:

  • no less than three (3) years and completion of rehabilitation;
  • four (4) years for a person whose driver's license was cancelled or denied for an offense occurring within ten (10) years of the first of three qualified prior impaired driving incidents; or
  • six (6) years for a person whose driver's license was cancelled or denied for an offense occurring after for or more qualified prior impaired driving incidents.

Reinstatement of Driving Privileges, Multiple Incidents:

A person 
(a) whose driver's license has been canceled or denied as a result of three or more qualified impaired driving incidents shall not be eligible for reinstatement of driving privileges without an ignition interlock restriction until the person:

  1. has completed rehabilitation according to rules adopted by the commissioner or 
been granted a variance from the rules by the commissioner; and
  2. has submitted verification of abstinence from alcohol and controlled substances, as evidenced by the person's use of an ignition interlock device or other chemical monitoring device approved by the commissioner.

(b) The verification of abstinence must show that the person has abstained from the 
use of alcohol and controlled substances for a period of not less than:

  1. three years, for a person whose driver's license was canceled or denied for an offense occurring within ten years of the first of two qualified prior impaired driving incidents, or occurring after three qualified prior impaired driving incidents;
  2. four years, for a person whose driver's license was canceled or denied for an offense occurring within ten years of the first of three qualified prior impaired driving incidents; or
  3. six years, for a person whose driver's license was canceled or denied for an offense occurring after four or more qualified prior impaired driving incidents.

You have the option to petition for judicial review to determine if the revocation or cancellation is unlawful. The following criteria and circumstances apply:

  • A petition for judicial review of the driver's license revocation must be filed no later than 30 days from the date of the incident or date of revocation. Failure to file a timely petition will prevent the matter from being heard before a judge.
  • Filing this petition ensures that the driver exercises their right to have a judge evaluate the legal basis for the state's revocation of the driver's license. The actual hearing before the court is called the “Implied Consent Hearing.”
  • If the judge determines that the revocation is unlawful, then the two (2) notations entered into the driver's license record will be removed and the driver's license will be reinstated.

Questions about losing your driver's license because of a DUI / DWI? Contact Eric J. Olson for a free consultation.

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If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges or a DWI, contact Eric J. Olson. Mr. Olson is always glad to meet with you for a free consultation at his office in the Minneapolis metro area or any convenient location. If you find yourself in jail or any emergency situation, call Olson Defense before you talk to the police.