Q. I was arrested for DUI and refused to take a blood alcohol content test. The officer took my driver’s license. Will it be automatically suspended?
A. No. The suspension is NOT automatic. The officer should’ve also given you a 1205 form. This is a request by the officer to the Department of Drivers Safety to have your license suspended. You have 10 business days from the date of the arrest to request an administrative hearing to try to avoid a suspension. Only if you fail to request the hearing will your license be automatically suspended. Because you refused to take a BAC test, you risk your license being suspended for one year with no eligibility for a limited driving permit.
FAILURE TO APPEAR
Q. I failed to appear in court. What can happen?
A. In most cases a bench warrant is issued for your arrest and your driver’s license can be suspended. You might be able to avoid some serious consequences by acting fast and calling a lawyer to discuss your options.
Q. I violated my probation. What can happen to me?
A. This is very serious. The best way to view probation is that it is simply jail with the bars. Typically, if you are in violation, your probation officer will have a warrant issued for your arrest. You will have limited options at that point and calling a lawyer right away is advised.
Q. What does “super speeder” mean.
A. Georgia’s “super speeder” law went into effect on January 1, 2010. You are designated a super speeder if you are convicted of speeding in excess of 75 mph on any two lane road or 85 mph on all roads. An extra $200 fine is assessed to any other fine you suffer resulting from the conviction. It is mailed to you like a bill and failure to pay it results in a driver’s license suspension.
Q. My boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife and I had an altercation. I was arrested. They don't want to press charges against me. Do I still need a lawyer?
A. You watch too much television. Yes, you need a lawyer. As private citizens, we don't "press" charges. Therefore, we can not dismiss charges. In fact, there's really no such thing as "pressing charges." The phrase can help people understand the process, however. It is the State that prosecutes offenses (presses charges) as they are reported to the police.
Q. I don't live in Georgia (or I live in Georgia but not near Atlanta). I was passing through and was charged with an offense. Am I required to come back for court?
A. Not necessarily. But you absolutely will have to come back if you don't hire a lawyer. I can help you resolve your case with a proceeding called a Plea in Absentia. I’ll appear in court for you and negotiate your case in the same way I would were you present. If you agree with what I’ve negotiated, we can take care of your case by email and FedEX. Be aware, though, while this procedure is accepted for felony cases in Superior Court, it is rare. It is more common for misdemeanors in State Court, and misdemeanor traffic violations in Municipal Court. You will not be able to do this on your own.