Understanding the Administrative License Suspension after a DUI

After a DUI arrest, you essentially have two cases before that you need to worry about – the criminal DUI case and the administrative case that deals with the suspension of your license. Apart from having a DUI conviction on your record and the possibility of jail time, another significant stressor is losing the ability to drive to and from work, to pick your children up from school or daycare, and other major inconveniences. This blog aims to help you understand what will happen to your license in the immediate aftermath of an arrest, as well as your options for fighting back. 

Getting Pulled Over for DUI

Many people are familiar with the circumstances of a typical DUI arrest: after noticing a car driving erratically, a police officer stops the car and asks the driver to step out and perform field sobriety tests. In addition to these tests, most officers will ask drivers they suspect of driving under the influence to blow into a breathalyzer. In most cases, the legal BAC (blood alcohol content) limit is .08. 

On the roadside, the driver may commit two actions that result in a suspended license:

  • Refusing to use a breathalyzer; or
  • Blowing a .08 or above on the breathalyzer. 

After Your Arrest

Alabama has an implied consent law on the books, which means that, if you hold a valid driver’s license, you must submit to a breathalyzer test if asked. If the police decide to suspend your license right after your arrest, which they normally will, you have 10 days to challenge the suspension, which goes into effect 45 days after your arrest. They will swap out your license with an AST-60 form, which is a formal notice that your license will be suspended. 

With your experienced Alabama DUI lawyer, you must draft a demand letter and send it to the state Department of Public Safety to receive an administrative review hearing. During this hearing, it will be determined whether or not you were lawfully arrested and whether or not you refused to submit to a breathalyzer test or had a BAC of .08 or higher. If you are unsuccessful at your hearing, you may appeal the decision within 30 days. 


After being arrested for DUI, your first call should be to a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney with experience in successfully defending DUI cases. Your livelihood and future are at stake, and Attorney John M. Totten will take your case seriously and provide an aggressive defense. Call the firm today at 256-233-2025.

John M. Totten