Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Why should I contest my suspension?

When you get arrested for an OUI, a couple of things will happen. First, the arresting officer will give you a Court date to appear for your arraignment. Second, the arresting officer will submit a statement of probable cause, along with a copy of your Intox results and police report to the Maine Secretary of State (SOS for short). The SOS will send you a letter in the mail, usually within 14 days of the arrest, indicating that your right to operate a motor vehicle has been suspended effective "XYZ date"... UNLESS you request a hearing in writing and within 10 days of the effective date of suspension.

Here's why it is so important to follow through and request a hearing. First, unless you like riding your bike to work (hey, these days it might be cheaper), you need to request that hearing... or your license goes under suspension automatically. Second, if you plan on contesting your criminal case (I guess that's why you're reading this blog right now) this is the best opportunity to cross the cop on his police report. You can also usually get a copy of the PD report directly from the BMV and in advance of your arraignment.

There are so many different facets to OUI defense that I can't put them all down in a blog. Suffice it say that this hearing may not only impact your right to drive via the SOS, but it could have a real impact on your criminal case. I would safely estimate that I have gleaned important information in no less than 90% of the Administrative Hearings where I've represented my clients. Don't miss the boat on this one.

William T. Bly, Esq.
Maine OUI Lawyer