How to Get Your License Back After an Under 21 DUI

A DUI arrest for an under 21 driver has serious consequences.  In California, anyone under 21 years old who has been convicted of driving while intoxicated/driving under the influence (DWI/DUI) or who has been found to have been driving with a .01% or more of alcohol in their blood will have his or her driver's license suspended for at least a year. If the individual does not live near adequate public transportation, must work to support the family or is responsible for the medical care of another family member, the court may issue a restricted license because of "critical need."  A mandatory 30-day suspension is required before filing the application. 

Here is the 5 step process to apply for the under 21 restriction.

First, Determine whether you meet the criteria to be considered for a critical need driver's license. If you were under 21 years old when you were arrested, tested positive for a 0.01 percent blood alcohol concentration and had your driver's license suspended, you may be eligible for a critical need license. One of the conditions for obtaining a restricted license is that you did not refuse to take the blood or breath test required by a peace officer to determine your alcohol level at the time of your arrest.

Second, Ensure that you meet critical need criteria. You are eligible for a restricted hardship license if the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) determines that public transportation is inadequate and that you must operate the vehicle to transport a family member to and from the doctor's office or other medical facility, to travel to and from school, to go to and from work or to tend to some other family business for the purpose of acquiring income. Further, you must be legally present in California to qualify for a restricted hardship license

Third, Download the DS 694 application form titled "Application for Critical Need Restriction".  You must first check one or more of the reasons you need a restricted hardship license. These include "For Family Illness," "To and From School," "To and From Work" and "For Family Enterprise." Be sure to include your name, driver's license number, address, and other pertinent personal information. Next, describe your transportation needs, the distance the destination is from your residence and the route you drive to the destination. Include the other drivers in your household, their driver's licenses and the reasons they are unable to provide transportation

Fourth, Request the following individuals complete the Statement of Facts section on the application. If you are requesting a critical need restriction to transport a family member to receive medical care, have the physician state that your family member is unable to drive to and from her office and requires your help. If you are requesting a critical need restriction in order to drive to and from school, ask your school principal or dean to fill out the pertinent information on the application. Finally, if you are requesting this hardship restriction for employment purposes, ask your employer to complete this section on the application

Fifth, Complete the form and mail it to the address on the form. You may also attache other relevent documents such as enrollment in DUI education classes and the like, DMV will review the application and notify you within 10 working days whether or not your application is approved. If DMV approves your application, you must go to a DMV field office to complete the final section of the application, pay a $100 reissue fee and submit proof of insurance, which you must maintain for three years.
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