The ALR Hearing: Another set of problems
Suspension or revocation of your driver’s license is strong punishment, and the consequences can be very detrimental to your employment, home life, and overall quality of life. It is the job of Houston DWI lawyers to do everything possible to keep this from happening to you by working hard and using the knowledge that comes with experience and proven results. Our first priority will be your case and to get the most favorable result possible. For more information please contact Mr. Martinez, our Houston DWI attorney.
Aside from the arrest, booking, and arraignment, if you are charged with DWI you must also contend with the suspension of your driver’s license. This decision is made at an Administrative License Revocation (ALR) hearing. The ALR is a civil, administrative process and a whole different set of issues unrelated to criminal court proceedings.
At a traffic stop, if the officer suspects that you are impaired, he or she will administer field sobriety tests. If you fails these field tests, you are then arrested for DWI. Upon arrest, you will be asked to take a chemical test to measure your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level. This is usually conducted by taking a breathalyzer test. If the you refuse to take this test or fail it by registering a .08 BAC (blood alcohol content) or greater, you will be served a notice that your driver’s license will be suspended. The officer confiscates your Texas driver’s license and issues you a temporary driving permit. How do you get your license back?
At this point, you have 15 days to request an ALR hearing; if you do not request a hearing, the suspension goes into effect on the 40th day after notice was served. Depending on the facts of your case, your license could be suspended for 90 days up to two years!
Now, with a potential ALR hearing coming up, you have yet one more set of problems complicating your life. This can mean complications in simply moving from place to place with a suspended license and the inability to drive. Mr. Martinez, an attorney from our DWI law offices is available to help you solve this set of problems and provide you with a strong defense throughout the legal process. We will help you get your license back.
The next item you need to think about is insurance. Insurance companies make money by selling coverage to safe drivers that don’t have accidents. These drivers need insurance coverage “just in case” there is an accident. If you are a driver with a DWI, you are not considered a safe driver; you are considered a “high risk” driver. Your insurance company may want to cancel your insurance contract and drop you immediately after discovering that you have been convicted of an alcohol-related driving offense. Another option the company has is to decline to renew your auto policy. And yet, a third option is to raise your annual rates by an exorbitant amount. How much? Double or triple!
In addition, the damage that occurred to your vehicle might not be covered by your insurance policy if you were driving while intoxicated, depending on the type of insurance you have and the type of policy. If you have liability insurance, your insurance contract will cover damages that occur when you are at fault for another party, such as a passenger, another driver, or a pedestrian. It does not coverage your injuries or property damage to your vehicle. This happens even if you are convicted of DWI.
Texas is not a no-fault state for car insurance purposes, and relies on the “tort system.” This means that one driver is said to be at fault when an accident occurs. One person is going to be designated as the person who caused the accident to occur. So, if you are that person—you are at fault in an accident caused by your drinking—you will be responsible for paying for the medical bills, damage, and lost wages that happen because of the accident for others involved in the accident. You will also have your own bills and court costs related to the DWI—these may not covered by your insurance company and may come out of your own pocket.
Contact us today to have a knowledgeable lawyer in your corner fighting for your rights and trying to win your ALR hearing. If not, you can see what may happen. The Martinez law firm DWI attorney has defended countless individuals in hearings, and our attorney, Mr. Martinez, know the law, the judges, and how the proceedings in the Houston courts unfold. Without hiring any Houston DWI lawyers, you will have little idea how to prepare and what to expect when the day of the hearing arrives.
By Herman Martinez