Administrative Per Se (APS) Suspension

You only have 10 days after a DUI arrest with an Order of Suspension or Order of Revocation to demand a hearing to fight to invalidate the APS suspension. The California DMV will conduct a telephone hearing unless you request an in-person hearing.

The DMV office in San Francisco for the APS suspension hearing is located at 1377 Fell Street. San Francisco, CA 94117. The office phone number is (800) 777-0133. The office is open from 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. on Monday through Friday.

Attorney for the DMV Admin APS Hearing in San Francisco, CA

Although you can request the DMV hearing yourself, if you intend to hire a criminal defense attorney to represent you in the DUI case, it is important to hire the attorney within ten (10) days of the arrest so that the demand for the hearing is timely. The DMV hearing is one of the most important parts of the case, so it is important that your criminal defense attorney has adequate time to prepare for the DMV hearing.

Call 1 (866) 842-5384 to speak to an attorney at Ticket Crushers in San Francisco, CA about your case. We provide an aggressive defense at all stages of DUI cases, including the DMV hearing to contest the administrative per se (APS) suspension or revocation.


California’s DUI Administrative License Suspension Program

The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) in California manages an administrative license suspension program. This program is often called the “Admin Per Se” (APS). The APD was implemented in 1990 in order to comply with requirements to receive federal grant money and in order to deter drunk driving.

After most cases involving a DUI arrest, the arresting officer will take the driver’s license and issue an Order of Suspension/Revocation. The notice of suspension or revocation is issued when:

  • The defendant refuses to submit to a chemical test of the blood or breath after a lawful arrest for DUI; or
  • The defendant takes a chemical (blood or breath) test which shows a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level of:
    • 0.01 percent while on DUI probation
    • 0.04 percent while driving a commercial vehicle, and/or
    • 0.08 percent or more while driving a noncommercial vehicle

Urine Tests in California DUI Cases are Rare

Urine tests have largely been eliminated from California’s DUI testing program except in the following circumstances:

  • Both the blood test and breath tests are unavailable
  • The driver is a hemophiliac, or
  • The driver is taking anticoagulant medication

The DMV’s Cursory Administrative Review

After the DUI arrest, the officer will confiscate the driver’s license and issue an Order of Suspension/Revocation. If you are eligible, the officer will also provide you with a temporary driver’s license that is included in the order. A temporary driver’s license is valid for 30 days from the issue date (which is usually the date of the arrest).

If the officer does not serve you with an Order of Suspension/Revocation for some reason, then the DMV will mail you the order.

It is important to keep in mind that the DMV’s APS suspension or revocation is independent of any punishments that can be imposed in the criminal case if you are eventually convicted of DUI.

After the Order of Suspension/Revocation is provided to the DMV by the arresting officer, the DMV will automatically conduct a cursory review of the paperwork. That paperwork can include:

  • The driver’s license
  • The officer’s sworn report and any accompanying documents
  • An arrest report
  • A traffic collision report (if any), and
  • The results of any chemical test of the breath, blood or urine.

Demanding a DMV Hearing to Contest the Administrative Suspension

You only have 10 days after you receive the Order of Suspension/Revocation to demand a hearing to fight to invalidate the APS suspension/revocation. The California DMV will conduct a telephone hearing unless you request an in-person hearing.

If you intended to hire a criminal defense attorney to represent you in the DUI case, it is important to hire the attorney within ten (10) days of the arrest so that the demand for the hearing is timely and so that your criminal defense attorney has adequate time to prepare for the DMV hearing.

The DMV will not stay the APS suspension/revocation unless you make a timely demand for a hearing within 10 days of the arrest and the DMV is not able to provide a hearing before the effective date of the APS suspension or revocation.

After demanding the DMV hearing, your DUI defense attorney will obtain copies of the evidence the DMV will admit into the record during the hearing. You are entitled to have a criminal defense attorney represent you at the DMV hearing. You are permitted to testify at the hearing or present other evidence, although your criminal defense attorney may explain reasons why you should not testify.

In most cases, the DMV will not subpoena any witnesses to testify (including the arresting officer). Your attorney, however, will often subpoena all witnesses in the case.

After the hearing decision, your attorney can submit a written request for a department review within 15 days of the effective date of the notice. The DMV charges a fee of $120 for a department review, as provided in California Vehicle Code (CVC) §§14105.5, 14907).


Reinstating Driving Privileges After a APS Suspension in San Francisco, CA

After the suspension or revocation is over, you can reinstate your driving privileges by:

  • Paying a $125 reissue fee to DMV as required by CVC §14905
  • Filing proof of financial responsibility, which is usually a California Insurance Proof Certificate [SR 22], $35,000 cash deposit, surety bond, or self insurer certificate under CVC §16430), and
  • Maintaining proof of financial responsibility for 3 years

Issues for the DUI DMV Hearing

The issues for the DUI DMV hearing depend on whether your case involves a BAC reading over 0.08 percent or an alleged refusal to submit to a breath, blood or urine test. Issues in a case involving a chemical test with a BAC at 0.08 percent or above include:

  • Whether the officer had reasonable cause to believe you were driving a motor vehicle in violation of CVC §§ 23152, 23153, or 23154
  • Whether you were lawfully detained while on DUI probation or lawfully arrested
  • Whether you were driving a motor vehicle when you had:
    • 0.01 percent BAC or more while on DUI probation
    • 0.04 percent BAC or more while driving a commercial vehicle, or
    • 0.08 percent BAC or more while driving a noncommercial vehicle

Issues in a case involving an alleged refusal to submit to a breath, blood, or urine test include:

  • Whether you refused or failed to complete a chemical test
  • Whether the officer had reasonable cause to believe you were driving a motor vehicle in violation of CVC §§ 23152, 23153, or 23154
  • Whether you were lawfully detained while on DUI probation or lawfully arrested
  • Whether you were told that your driving privilege would be suspended or revoked for one, two, or three years if you refused to submit to or failed to complete a chemical test
  • Whether you refused to submit to, or failed to complete a chemical test or preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) test (while on DUI probation) after being requested to do so by a peace officer

Length of the ALS Suspension / Revocation

The length of the ALS Suspension / Revocation after a DUI arrest in California depends on whether you took the chemical test or refused, and whether you have any prior convictions.

If you took a chemical test with a BAC level of 0.08 percent or more, then your driving privilege will be suspended for:

Note: This four-month or one-year suspension can also be imposed if the results showed a BAC of 0.04 percent while operating a commercial motor vehicle or a BAC of 0.01 percent for any person on court-ordered DUI probation.

If you refused chemical testing, then your driving privileges will be suspended:

  • For a first offense you will receive a one-year suspension
  • For a second offense within 10 years of a separate violation of DUI, you will receive a two-year revocation
  • For a third or subsequent offense within 10 years you will receive a three-year revocation.

For a Driver on Court-Ordered DUI Probation

For a driver on court-ordered DUI probation, if the driver submitted to a Preliminary Alcohol Screening (PAS) test or tests or a chemical test and the results showed a BAC level of 0.01 percent or more, then in addition to the APS suspension, the DMV will impose a concurrent one-year suspension based on the violation of DUI probation. Persons who are penalized under this law are not eligible for a restricted driver’s license during the one-year period.

If you refused chemical testing while on DUI probation, then your driving privileges will be suspended for:

  • A first offense will result in a two-year revocation, if on DUI probation, or
  • A second or subsequent offense within 10 years of a separate violation of DUI will result in a three-year revocation, if on DUI probation

Eligibility for a Restricted License after a DUI Arrest

After a DUI arrest in San Francisco, CA, you may be eligible for a noncommercial restricted driver’s license if all of the following apply:

  • Your driver’s license is otherwise valid and not suspended for some other reason not related to the DUI suspension
  • You have no qualifying prior convictions as explained below
  • This case does not involve a refusal to submit to testing, and
  • You were not under the age of 21 years old when the offense occurred

Call us to find out about more about the APS suspension rules when a person under 21 years old is arrested for DUI.

A person qualifies for a noncommercial restricted driver’s license only after a first offense, which meand that you have not had another offense within 10 years of a separate DUI violation.

For purposes of the restricted driver’s license, a “DUI violation” is defined to include any charge reduced to reckless driving; vehicular manslaughter, or a CVC § 23140 violation which resulted in a conviction or separate administrative determination that you were driving with a BAC of 0.01 percent or more while on DUI Probation, driving a commercial vehicle at any age with a BAC of 0.04 percent or more, driving a noncommercial vehicle with a BAC of 0.08 percent or more, or you refused a chemical test.

Holders of a commercial driver’s license are down-graded to a Class C non-commercial driver license if convicted of DUI. Then the former CDL holder can request the applicable restriction noted below which shall remain in effect for five (5) months.

If a former CDL holder was cited in a:

  • Noncommercial vehicle, you may be eligible for a restriction to drive to and from a DUI treatment program, and to and from or during the course of employment only
  • Commercial vehicle, you may be eligible for a restriction to drive to and from a DUI treatment program only

Requirements for a Non-Commercial Restricted License

After a DUI APS Suspension or Revocation, you can be issued a noncommercial restricted driver’s license, if you:

  • First enroll in a licensed DUI First Offender program
  • Notify the program provider that you intend to apply for a restricted driver license
  • Ask the program provider to file a Proof of Enrollment Certificate (DL 107) in a licensed DUI First Offender program with DMV (CVC § 23538(b))
  • File proof of financial responsibility (i.e., a California Insurance Proof Certificate [SR 22], a $35,000 cash deposit, surety bond, or self insurer certificate under CVC § 16430), and
  • Pay a $125 reissue fee

After the end of the mandatory 30-day suspension period (the “hard” suspension period), you may be permitted to apply for a restricted driver’s license. You should request a to/from/during course of employment and DUI program restriction.

Your driving privilege will be restricted to allow you to drive to, from, and during the course of your employment and to and from the DUI program. The restriction is valid for five (5) months from the issuance date.

Note: If you enroll in but fail to complete the DUI program, then the DMV will be notified and it will suspend your driving privilege for up to four (4) months.


Finding an Attorney for a DUI APS Suspension in San Francisco, CA

Call our attorneys to find out more about a DUI APS suspension hearing at the DMV office in San Francisco. We represent clients charged with a wide variety of DUI charges from a first offense to a more serious second or third conviction.

We are familiar with the tactics used by the DUI enforcement unit of the San Francisco Police Department, the California Highway Patrol, and other local law enforcement agencies in the San Francisco Bay area.

Ticket Crushers fights drunk driving cases involving a DUI breath test, blood test, or refusal. Call us to find out more about your best defense and ways to fight the case. Call us at 1 (866) 842-5384 today.