Category Archives: DWI

In Raleigh, NC Does A Suspended License Show Up On A Background Check?

Job hunting is a lot more complex than it used to be. Credit and background checks are standard procedure for new hires, and in some cases, applicants. Many organizations feel that it’s better to do a background screen on an individual before they even interview them, especially since it’s now much less expensive.  In Raleigh, NC Does A Suspended License Show Up On A Background Check?

 

Background checks are part of the normal course of business for more than just jobs. If you’re trying to rent a new apartment, the new landlord or management company wants to make sure you’re someone they can reasonably trust to take care of their property and won’t be a “bad neighbor.

If you’re attempting to purchase a firearm, a criminal background check is standard procedure. Specific jobs, such as teachers and childcare workers, will undergo a more thorough background check to comply with the elevated standards that are part of the job.

What A Background Check Finds

When someone says they will be doing a “background check,” it means that they will be looking at your criminal history, particularly within the last 7 to 10 years. They will also be checking to see if your education and experience match what you’ve listed on your resume. Employment background checks can also include driving records, credit records, reference verifications, and drug screens, depending on the type of job you’re applying for. If you’re applying for a job that requires a valid driver’s license, a driving record check will likely be included.

If there is any adverse information in your report, particularly a criminal conviction, it will show up, and you’ll likely be questioned about it. If there is an entry that you know will appear, it’s best to mention it to the company before they run a check, and alert them that it will appear. A company considering you for a job where money is handled will want to know if you’ve previously been accused of or convicted of a money-related crime, such as embezzlement.

The National Driver Register

This division of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is a nationwide database of individuals who have lost their driving privileges. The NDR is a repository of driving infractions from DMV offices around the US. Anyone running a background check with the NDR will find a suspended license, as well as a revoked or denied for cause, such as a DUI conviction.

Although all 50 states participate, it is not without error, and some records may not have been updated as they should have been. However, the driving records are not kept with the NDR, they are handled and updated at the state level. Record updates are done according to the individual state’s recordkeeping requirements.

Get Help With A Suspended License

If your license has been suspended, you may need help getting it reinstated. Attorney Dewey P. Brinkley is your best chance in Raleigh for reversing your suspended license and your driving privileges restored. Don’t let a suspension cost you your job, housing or other things. He can help you through the appeals process and defend you in court. Call today: 919-832-0307 (or contact him online) to schedule an appointment for your free initial consultation.

Should You Submit To A Field Sobriety Test When Pulled Over In Raleigh, NC?

Whether at a checkpoint stop or just being pulled over, you may be asked to take a field sobriety test to determine if you are driving under inebriation. However, you do have the right to refuse to take these “roadside tests” even if you have consumed alcohol.

But if you’re sober, why not take them and prove that you are? Because like a breath alcohol device, field sobriety tests are not always accurate, and may not be properly administered. You could end up being arrested for “driving under the influence” when you’re anything but.

Field Sobriety Testing (FST)

North Carolina officers administer a series of three roadside tests to determine if a driver is impaired:

Should you submit to a Field Sobriety Test when pulled over in Raleigh, NC?

·         The “Walk-And-Turn” Test—the officer will ask you to walk in a straight line, one foot in front of the other so that the officer can observe your sense of balance. He or she may also ask you to take a specific number of steps, and observe if you can remember the number. Unfortunately, a number of variables can affect your balance, from foot pain to uncomfortable shoes to other physical impairments.

·         The “One Leg Stand” Test—the officer will ask you to stand on one leg for 30 seconds and count to 30. The officer will observe both balance and your ability to count. The officer is looking for four things:

  • Swaying while balancing
  • Balancing with arms
  • Hopping
  • Putting down the raised foot

Like the previous test, a number of variables can affect the outcome, including your age, weight, street or weather conditions or your current physical condition, such as an injury like a pulled muscle. Officers who incorrectly administer the test may interpret the results incorrectly, declaring you “impaired.”

·         The “Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test” (HGN)—this is the test where an officer asks you to stand still, hands at your sides, and follow his finger, a light, or some other object put in front of you. If your eyes don’t move smoothly side to side, but in a jerking fashion, you’ll be determined to be “impaired.”

Additionally, breath alcohol testing mechanisms may not be used or calibrated properly, leading to even more inaccurate evidence.

These tests are, by some accounts, designed to make you fail them. The passing and failing of these tests is a personal decision made by the officer.

Obviously, a number of factors can affect the outcome. Fatigue, allergies, injuries and other ailments can lead to a “failed attempt.” An elderly driver not in peak physical condition may not be able to hold his or her leg up for 30 seconds or do a walk-and-turn to the officer’s satisfaction.

No matter how well you perform these tests, if the police officer renders an opinion in court that you didn’t perform them adequately, this would indicate to him or her that you were indeed “impaired,” even if you weren’t. A jury may well side with the officer based on his or her opinion.

Additionally, breath alcohol testing mechanisms may not be used or calibrated properly, leading to even more false evidence.

Refusing The FST

So what happens if you refuse to take these tests?

You are within your rights to refuse to take the FSTs, as well as inform the officer that you have a medical condition that can affect the outcome (such as recent knee surgery.) You will not lose your license. But because of the high incidence of incorrect results, it’s better to decline the FST rather than explain to a court why you failed them. This way, you’ll be arguing that the testing is unreliable and wasn’t suitable instead of defending yourself against a “failed” FST.

CAVEAT: refusing the EC/IR-II Breathalyzer test is another matter and can lead to a year-long suspension of your license. This is not the same as refusing the FST. But like the FST, these devices are also subject to incorrect results, especially if the officer is not properly trained in their use, or it has not been properly calibrated or maintained.

Miranda warnings are also not required before a Breathalyzer is administered.

Have You Failed An FST? Call An Experienced DUI Attorney

If you’ve been subjected to a suspected DUI traffic stop, Dewey P. Brinkley is a Raleigh attorney who can aggressively defend you and protect your rights in court. He will review all the evidence in your case and ensure that you have a fair trial.

Call the Law Offices of Dewey P. Brinkley today for a free initial consultation to discuss your DUI case at (919) 832-0307. You can also email us at dewey@deweypbrinkleylaw.com, or use our online contact form.

 

Can a Traffic Ticket Affect the Renewal of My Green Card in Raleigh, NC?

When it comes time to renew your green card, one of the questions you’ll be asked is if you were arrested, or committed any violations. If you’ve received a traffic ticket, even for something minor, you must answer “yes,” no matter how minor. Because if you answer “no,” they’ll find out anyway. Not telling the truth can definitely have an effect on your green card renewal. But a ticket, especially for something minor, doesn’t necessarily mean your green card won’t be approved.

Getting A Ticket

Can a Traffic Ticket Affect the Renewal of My Green Card in Raleigh, NC?Since becoming a US citizen takes a long time, a “green card” can give you the time you need to stay in the US while your citizenship is being processed. If you acquire a driver’s license in the US, you’ll also have to follow the laws for driving a car in the state where you live.

You may find yourself with a ticket one day. Don’t ignore it, take care of it. An attorney who understands how traffic court operates can help you so that it doesn’t become a bigger problem.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will ask you about any arrests, tickets or other infractions. As embarrassing as it can be to admit, you should always say “yes.”

After you fill out Form I-90 with USCIS, you’ll also be required to submit fingerprints, which are forwarded to the FBI. After the FBI receives your fingerprints, they’re checked against multiple law enforcement database. If you’ve received a citation of any kind (or have an arrest), the FBI will know immediately.

The Misdemeanor

Obviously, serious felonies crimes will most certainly affect your green card, and possibly derail your citizenship. But a misdemeanor is a different story.

Under US Immigration Law, a misdemeanor is one that:

  • Is punishable by one year or less of imprisonment
  • Is punishable by more than one year’s imprisonment, but is a misdemeanor by state law, as long as the sentence the individual actually received was one year or less.

Most minor traffic tickets are misdemeanors, and won’t cause a problem for your green card renewal, as long as you don’t lie about it.

However, federal immigration laws are different than most state laws regarding misdemeanors. This means that some things considered misdemeanors at the state level may actually be a felony under federal immigration laws.

What Is A Crime For Immigration

Crimes that will affect your immigration are any misdemeanors involving:

  • Drug/controlled substance violations
  • Any crime involving violence
  • Any crime involving moral turpitude

Conviction of a crime that involves violence is a felony under immigration law, even if it’s considered a misdemeanor at the state level, and is grounds for immediate removal from the US. (If you’re accused of a crime involving violence, contact an immigration attorney immediately.)

Conviction of two crimes involving moral turpitude that were not from a single act is grounds for removal by DHS. This is true of crimes that the state considers a misdemeanor. However, a single act of moral turpitude would not be enough for DHS to initiate removal if the maximum sentence at the state level is less than one year.

Conviction of a controlled substance violation, which includes paraphernalia, is also grounds for denial of your green card and removal, even if the state considers it a misdemeanor. The exception is for less than 30 grams of marijuana.

Particularly difficult is the possession of marijuana, which is actually legal in a number of states (but not in North Carolina.) While less than 30 grams is not grounds for denial of your green card and removal, it is grounds for inadmissibility. This means if you leave the US, you can be denied re-entry. You’ll have to apply for a waiver of inadmissibility to be allowed back into the US.

Ticketed In Raleigh? Call Today

A traffic ticket probably isn’t the end of the world, but it can cause problems, especially if you ignore it. Don’t let a traffic ticket raise your insurance rates or cause problems getting or renewing your green card.

If you have received a traffic ticket and would like to learn more about your options, contact Dewey P. Brinkley in Raleigh, NC. You can use our online contact form or call our offices any time or call 919-832-0307. We look forward to hearing from you.

Appealing a Suspended License in Raleigh, NC

If your driver’s license has been suspended, it’s inconvenient, but may not be permanent. North Carolina has an appeals process for a license suspension so that you can, eventually, get it back.

Why Was Your License Suspended?

There are a number of reasons why your license can be suspended. The ease or difficulty of appealing depends on why your license was suspended, and for how long. The state will notify you in writing of the suspension, and list the reason.

If your suspension is for an insurance lapse, failing to pay a ticket or appear in court, excess points on your driving record, or other administrative reason, you simply need to comply with the requirements and your license will be reinstated.

However, if you’ve lost your license for things like speeding or failing to stop and render aid in an accident, the suspensions are longer. Charges such as DWI, death by vehicle (misdemeanor) participation in illegal street racing and refusing a blood test can lead to suspensions of 1 to 4 years.

Appealing a Suspended License in Raleigh, NC

Additionally, your license can be suspended for:

  • Two speeding convictions over 55 mph in a 12-month period
  • One conviction of speeding (over 55) with one conviction of reckless driving in a year
  • As part of a sentence or suspended sentence that revokes your driving privileges
  • A conviction for speeding in excess of 75 mph

Subsequent DWIs or felony death by vehicle incurs a permanent license suspension.

A suspension can also be part of a separate action, such as a criminal conviction or failure to pay child support. In cases like these, you’ll need to comply with the requirements (such as pay back child support or serve a jail term) before you can go through the process of getting your license back.

A suspension becomes part of your permanent driving record.

Administrative Hearings

Once you’re notified that your license has been suspended, you may be able to request an administrative hearing to appeal. This will depend on the reason your license was suspended, and you’ll retain your driving privileges (and your license) until the hearing. The hearings are not guaranteed and will be granted based on the reason for the suspension.

To request a hearing, you can contact the central DMV office in Raleigh at 919-715-7500, or by writing to:

North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles

Driver License Hearings
3118 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27697

The DMV will notify you in writing of the day and time of your hearing. If you lose this hearing, you can appeal the decision to the North Carolina Superior Court in your resident county. But you must file your appeal to NC Superior Court within 30 days.

Getting Your Driver’s License Back

If you’re not able to win on appeal, you’ll need to go to your local DMV office after your suspension is over and pay a $50 fee ($100 if you were suspended for DUI) and re-apply for your license. You may be required to re-take any testing involved.

Get Back Behind The Wheel

Having your driver’s license suspended or revoked doesn’t mean you’ll never legally drive again. But license restoration is a process and can take some time. Need help? Attorney Dewey P. Brinkley is your best chance in Raleigh for getting your license back and your driving privileges restored. He can help you through the appeals process and defend you in court. Call today: 919-832-0307 to schedule an appointment for your free initial consultation.

 

How Can I Get My Raleigh DWI Dismissed?

North Carolina takes drunk driving very seriously. With some of the strictest laws in the US, a DWI is a difficult charge to defend, and even more difficult to dismiss. But with the right legal representation, good fact investigation and a strong defense, a DWI can, in some circumstances, be dismissed. Here’s what you need to know.

Was The Arrest Conducted Correctly?

How Can I Get My Raleigh DWI Dismissed?A police officer must follow specific, proper procedures for a drunk driving (or any) arrest. He or she must have reasonable suspicion or probable cause to pull a vehicle over, and be able to prove that you were, indeed driving while intoxicated or otherwise impaired.

There are some occasions where an officer made multiple mistakes in the arrest and the DA dismisses the case, but those are very rare. If you’re not lucky enough to have the charge dismissed by the DA before trial, you’ll have to fight in court.

If the arresting officer mishandled the arrest or made other mistakes that are crucial to the arrest and criminal case, a judge may decide to dismiss the case completely. But you must have all the facts of your case documented, along with any evidence. Mistakes like:

  • Failing to read your Miranda rights (right to remain silent, to have an attorney, etc.)
  • Acting in a disrespectful and/or intimidating manner
  • Displaying any improper conduct toward you during your arrest
  • Improperly administering a breathalyzer or field sobriety test

Evidence That Disproves The Officer’s Claim And Creates Doubt

Again, the police officer must have probable cause to pull you over and begin an arrest. His or her testimony carries a lot of weight in court. However, details are important here. For instance, if the officer did not actually witness you driving the car while inebriated, there may be some doubt involved, and the case could be dismissed.

Witnesses who can corroborate your story can also be helpful. If bloodshot eyes are the only evidence of your “intoxication,” they could indicate another condition such as allergies or fatigue (or crying.) Without additional evidence, such as an odor of alcohol, a field sobriety test, or a blood alcohol level test, the prosecution can’t positively prove that you were driving and intoxicated.

One medical condition that can actually raise BAC is Candida albicans. That’s a scientific name for yeast overgrowth in the gut. In advanced cases, yeast overgrowth can actually cause detectable levels of alcohol in the blood without a drop of alcohol consumed. Candida can be diagnosed by a simple blood test and is easily treated and eradicated with antifungals and diet. But left untreated, candida can cause symptoms that could lead an officer to believe you’re actually driving drunk.

This is where you’ll need a good criminal defense attorney at your side, both before and during the trial. Your attorney can request evidence from the police department from the arresting officer’s records, including any video. He or she can also investigate other evidence before the trial that can prove your innocence.

You Can’t “Plead Down”

In some states, a DWI can be reduced to a lesser charge, like reckless driving. However, North Carolina doesn’t allow reductions of DWI. In fact, under N.C.G.S. 20-179.4, DWI charges are actually more difficult. Unless the state can’t produce a witness, such as a police officer or other witness that can prove that you’re guilty, your case will go to trial.

Get Help From Raleigh’s DWI Attorney

An experienced DWI attorney can review your case, examine details, investigate and find out the exact circumstances of your case before you go to court. That’s why it’s important to have someone who knows how to defend someone in a DWI case and bring a successful outcome.

Dewey P. Brinkley is a former Wake County prosecutor who will prepare a strong defense and make sure you receive a fair trial under the law. Contact our Raleigh law office today at (919) 832-0307  for a free consultation. You can also email us at dewey@deweybrinkleylaw.com.

Are Raleigh DWIs Public Record?

Public records are any kind of information pertaining to a governmental agency. It’s data or other information collected by the government that isn’t of a confidential nature. The most common public records are birth and death records, marriage and divorce records, lien information and bankruptcy records, but there are quite a number of others. Accessibility depends on what state you live in.

Companies that charge for online record searches (i.e., Intellius) also use public records for background checks and people searcher functions. While they can provide the information you can find yourself, the sites can gather it much faster.

But after a DUI arrest, you may be wondering if anyone else can, or will, find out about it.

Arrest Records Are Public Records

Are Raleigh DWIs Public Record?

If you’ve been arrested in Raleigh for DWI—or anything else—anyone can find out about it through a public record search.

According to the Wake County website, any kind of governmental record collected by any state agency is considered to be “property of the people.” Any information of this kind is to be made public unless it is specifically marked as confidential in nature (i.e., with identifying information such as a date of birth or Social Security numbers.) This includes arrest records, real estate deeds and other types of information that involves a public entity. Wake County abides by the North Carolina Public Records Law, found at N.C.G.S. Chapter 132, which explains public records in further detail.

Public records are required to be made available to the public for free or for a “nominal cost,” but are also accessible online. Internet access to public records is immediate, as well as saves Wake County money on maintenance, staff, and overhead.

City-County Bureau of Identification (CCBI)

Wake County arrest records are in the CCBI portal and are searchable for free. The types of offenses that are in the database are listed in the North Carolina General Statute § 15A-502. Driving while intoxicated is included in the list. You can access the database online and for free. However, current case status and dispositions are not included in the database but are available in the Wake County Clerk of Superior Court’s Office.

How It Affects You

Anytime you’re asked if you’ve been arrested, you’re required to disclose that you have (unless you’ve had an expunction in NC.)  Background checks for employment, housing, education and other things are easy to get, so if you don’t answer truthfully, you’ll be found out almost immediately.

Loans like mortgages, student loans, credit cards and other types of revolving charges may be more difficult to get. This can limit your ability to acquire housing, education, and other necessities.

Additionally, a DUI arrest almost immediately raises your insurance rate, since you’re now “high risk.” You may even be dropped by your insurance company, but there are some insurers who offer insurance to those who have a DUI.

Fight The DUI

Dewey P. Brinkley is a former Wake County prosecutor who works to defend DUI cases. He will prepare a strong defense and make sure you receive a fair trial under the law. Contact our Raleigh law office today at (919) 832-0307 for a free consultation. You can also email him at dewey@deweybrinkleylaw.com.

 

Suspended License Attorney In Raleigh, NC

Having your driver’s license suspended in Raleigh can be a very big problem, particularly if you have to drive to your job, drive for your job, or otherwise need transportation. Public transportation may be difficult, inconvenient or non-existent for where you need to go. Taxis and other private transportation can be expensive. Dewey P. Brinkley can help you bounce back after receiving a suspended license.

Why Was Your License Suspended?

Suspended License Attorney In Raleigh, NCNorth Carolina will suspend your license for a myriad of reasons. Drunk driving is an obvious reason, (including things like refusing to take a breath or blood test) but there are many other reasons:

  • A certain number of accumulated “points” on your driving record
  • Speeding, greater than 15 miles over the speed limit if you’re over 55 mph, 30 days
  • Failure to stop and render aid at an accident, 1 year
  • “Willful racing” (illegal street racing, as well as watching, betting on or participating in racing), 3 years (vehicle will also be seized)
  • Driving without insurance or allowing insurance to be canceled
  • Failure to appear in court and/or pay traffic fines
  • Failure to pay child support

Your license can also be suspended for multiple minor infractions, such as accumulated tickets and/or traffic fines.

  • One speeding conviction for speeds greater than 75 mph
  • Two convictions of speeds greater than 55 mph within a 12 months period
  • One conviction of speeding faster than 55 mph with a reckless driving  conviction within a one-year period
  • A suspended court sentence (or part thereof) requiring that you may not operate a motor vehicle for a specific period of time

Driving while your license is suspended is a Class 1 misdemeanor, and you could receive a fine as well as jail time.

How Do I Get My License Back?

For simpler suspensions, such as unpaid tickets and fines, it’s just a matter of complying with the requirements of the ticket or going to court. You’ll also have to pay a fine, as well as possible court costs, in addition to

You won’t have to re-apply for your license after a suspension, you’ll just have to comply with the conditions to release the suspension. You may also be offered the option to attend administrative hearings, which may shorten your suspension. (Some suspensions may require this step.)

Administrative hearings also have fees, from $40 to $450, depending on the reason for your suspension/revocation.

Hardship Licenses

In some cases, you can apply for a hardship license that includes very limited driving privileges. You can’t request one if you’ve had a DUI conviction, requested one in the last 3 years, facing pending charges or have several concurrent charges in North Carolina or any other state. In addition to proof of insurance, you’ll need a viable reason for driving, such as to and from work, maintaining your household and providing emergency medical care.

License Revocation

More severe than a suspended license, revocation means that you are no longer allowed to drive. Depending on the severity of your revocation, you can still have your driving privileges restored, it may just take longer (and cost more.)

You’ll be required to schedule and attend an administrative hearing. Before requesting a hearing, North Carolina’s DOT suggests consulting a suspended license attorney to see if your situation warrants one, or if you need one.

Start Driving Yourself

A suspended or revoked license doesn’t have to mean the end of everything. Dewey P. Brinkley is your best chance in Raleigh for getting your license back and your driving privileges restored. Call him today at 919-832-0307 (or contact him online) to schedule an appointment for your free initial consultation.

Are DUI Checkpoints Legal?

Drunk driving. It’s a serious problem in the US, including North Carolina, and one that even the US Supreme Court feels is important enough to rule on.

The Fourth Amendment

This is the amendment that prohibits illegal search and seizures. However, The Supreme Court has ruled that because drunk driving is such a danger, DUI checkpoints aren’t illegal. They just have to be random, and not used for general crime control.

Are DUI Checkpoints Legal?

In other words, the checkpoints are put up randomly and in various places, (i.e., not on a particular intersection every weekend) to enable police to check for drunk drivers. Should police encounter other, non-vehicular violations, (such as wanted suspects for other crimes) they are allowed to place these individuals under arrest. But they can’t use the checkpoints for that reason.

Checkpoints also have to be publicly announced. You can find out when and where checkpoints will happen at RoadBlock.org or DUIBlock.com.

North Carolina’s Gen. Stat. §20-16.3A also makes the state’s DUI (“sobriety”) checkpoints legal for the purpose of finding and removing drivers under the influence who are a danger to other drivers.

Checkpoints usually occur late at night and early in the morning in the areas of bars and restaurants where, presumably, drunk drivers will frequently be caught.

Probable Cause

As a rule, a police officer must have probable cause to suspect you and stop you for something. Because of The Supreme Court’s ruling, DUI checkpoints in response to the innate dangers of drunk drivers do not override the rights of all drivers under the Fourth Amendment.

You Are Required To Stop

Since police officers are looking for drunk drivers at DUI checkpoints, you are required to stop. If you’re not drunk driving, have a current license and insurance, and not committing any other sort of crime, your stop will be quick and easy. It’s better to just go through the checkpoint and you’ll be on your way, even if it’s just a few minutes of delay.

If you see a DUI checkpoint or roadblock and turn left, right or around to avoid it, the police have the right to follow you, stop you, and specifically ask you why you avoided the stop. Even if your turn was completely legal and legitimate, (such as turning at an intersection or stop light to go to your residence or workplace) police have the right to stop you and ask about it.

Detecting Inebriation

If the officer suspects any inebriation or you exhibit signs of it, you’ll be asked to pull over and exit your vehicle. The officer will then ask you to submit to field sobriety testing and may administer a breath and/or blood test. You are required to comply or risk seizure of your driver’s license.

Get A Strong DUI Defense Attorney

The laws surrounding DUIs are complex. Attorney Dewey P. Brinkley is a former Wake County Assistant District Attorney who has strongly defended numerous DUI cases and will fight for you in court. A DUI is a serious charge, and you need someone who will make sure your rights are protected. Call the Law Office of Dewey P. Brinkley at 919-832-0307 to schedule your free DUI case consultation.

Raleigh, NC Suspended License? Here’s What to Do

Most of us don’t think about what would happen if we lost our driving privileges. How would you get back and forth to work, and run errands? Get to your doctor’s and other appointments? Having a suspended license can be very difficult to overcome. A suspension (or revocation) also becomes a permanent part of your driving record that you can’t expunge.

If you are suddenly without the ability to drive yourself around every day, you may need an attorney to help you get your license back.

The Reason

There are a number of reasons why North Carolina may suspend your license. While DUI is a frequent cause for suspension, there are others, including:

  • Speeding
  • Reckless driving
  • Refusal to take a blood or breath test at a traffic stop or DUI checkpoint
  • Accumulated “points” on your driving record from minor violations
  • Unpaid traffic tickets and other issues
  • Part of a separate criminal court sentence
  • Non-DMV related issues reported by other state agencies, such as failure to pay child support

How Long Is My License Suspended For?

Depending on the violation, you’ll lose your North Carolina driving privileges for anywhere from 30 days to 4 years (for a second offense DUI.) Once that period is completed, and you’ve fulfilled the suspension requirements, your privileges will be restored. You do not have to re-apply for a driver’s license after a suspension.

Multiple offenses (especially from DUI) involve a revocation or permanent loss of your driving privileges.

How Do I Get It Back?

Raleigh, NC Suspended License? Here’s What to Do

Your license can be restored after meeting eligibility requirements and paying all fines and fees. You may be required to attend an administrative hearing to shorten your suspension. A hearing may be required to determine your eligibility for restoration of your driving privileges after the revocation period.

North Carolina charges fees to restore your driver’s license once your requirements are completed (i.e., substance abuse assessment, driver’s ed, etc.) To pay these fees, you can go to any driver’s license office to pay in person, or by mail. These fees are separate from any other fines or charges imposed by the court or the DMV.

Additionally, if your suspension involves another agency, you will also be required to complete their requirements before your license is restored. For instance, if your license was suspended for back child support, your license won’t be restored until your balance is paid in full and brought current.

Applying For A Hardship License

Under certain circumstances, you can also apply for a “Hardship License” that would allow limited driving privileges after you’ve completed part of your suspension or revocation.

In addition to proof of insurance, you’ll have to offer a valid reason, such as driving to and from work, provide emergency medical care, and/or to run your household.

Your “limited license” would allow you to drive for 1 year, or for the remainder of your revocation, whichever is shorter.

Get Your License Back

Losing your license can be devastating. An experienced attorney can help you through the process of restoring your driving privileges.  Attorney Dewey P. Brinkley has helped hundreds of people restore suspended and revoked North Carolina driver’s licenses. Call us at 919-832-0307 to schedule your free consultation. We can’t get every suspended (or revoked) license restored, but we’ll help you through the process, and help you avoid mistakes that may extend your suspension.

Will a DUI Affect my Visa, Green Card, or Citizenship Application?

Becoming a US citizen is an arduous, time-consuming process. Even getting a visa or becoming a permanent resident with a “green card” can take time, and there’s a lot of administrative work involved. The last thing you need on the way to becoming a law-abiding US citizen is to break the law. But if you’ve done just that with a DUI, it could impact your immigration status. A strong criminal defense attorney can defend you in court against a DUI.

Gaining US Entry

Will a DUI Affect my Visa, Green Card, or Citizenship Application?

The US Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) is a division of Homeland Security, and now manages entry into the United States. Their services include citizenship and permanent residency, including naturalization, bringing foreign family members of US citizens into the US, assisting with foreign adoptions and relocating foreign persons into the US after wars and disasters. They also assist people wishing to work in the US with HB-1 visas.

USCIS examines not only your application but your character. A single DUI conviction will not necessarily bar you from citizenship or a green card. But if a DUI is not your first, or it’s combined with another crime or crimes, (such as drug possession) you may very well lose your visa, green card status, or have your citizenship application disqualified. You will likely also be deported.

Medical Conditions

One of the many determining factors for US admission is a person’s health and medical conditions. As a medical condition, alcoholism can be grounds for denying US admission and would be a separate ground for disqualification.

Full Disclosure

You should always disclose a DUI when asked, particularly on your N-400 application. If you don’t, it will show up during a criminal background check anyway. Lying on your citizenship application will increase the chances it will be declined.

Immigration officials take DUI very seriously because it is a serious crime. You will be asked about the DUI and any mitigating factors, such as harm to anyone else in the car or if children were in the car with you. North Carolina also has some of the strictest DUI laws in the US.

Some things that will prevent you from getting a visa, green card or citizenship status include:

  • Crimes of ”moral turpitude,” that is, crimes that display a lack of “good moral character
  • Violations of controlled substances (drug) laws, either of the US or another country
  • Numerous criminal convictions that brought prison sentences of five years or more, whether singly or together
  • Participating in or benefitting in any way from:
    • Illegal drug trafficking, inside or outside the US
    • Human trafficking, inside or outside the US
  • Money laundering
  • Prostitution

Any one of these crimes, combined with a DUI or two will affect your application. You can review the list of disqualifications for permanent residency and citizenship at the USCIS website. Your immigration attorney can help you sort through your application, review any potential issues and help you resolve them. You’ll need a criminal defense attorney to help you with a DUI.

Form I-192

If you are barred from entering the US for one of the above inadmissibility criteria, you can file an I-192 Waiver for “Forgiveness of Inadmissibility.” While it is not a guarantee, should you find yourself deemed “inadmissible” as a result of a DUI, you can ask for forgiveness to enter the US. However, this form is for non-immigrants only, and not for individuals who intend to stay in the US and live here.

Legal Defense For DUI

If you’ve been arrested for DUI, and don’t know where to turn, call us for help. Dewey P. Brinkley is a former Wake County Assistant District Attorney and has worked with many individuals to reduce their penalties or acquit them. Call him at 919-832-0307 to schedule your free consultation. He will aggressively defend you in court. (Note: Dewey P. Brinkley is a criminal defense attorney, and does not practice immigration law.)