Can I Get My License Back After a DWI? (in NY)

Driving under the influence (DUI) is one of the leading causes of road accident fatalities in the United States. The misdemeanor carries hefty penalties, including suspension of your driver’s license. Of course, your license can also be suspended if you commit other road traffic rules violations, but they often carry less suspension time compared to DUI. 


So, what happens after your license has been suspended? Can you ever get it reinstated? Absolutely! You will get your license reinstated after your suspension period elapses. However, driving license reinstatement is not automatic, as you must dully complete a reinstatement process. 


How to reinstate your driving license after a DUI suspension 

Serve your suspension period 

There are no shortcuts to reinstating your suspended driving license. You have to wait until your suspension period elapses. A one-year suspension might seem too harsh, but do not be tempted to drive without your license during this period, as that might aggravate your charges. 


Complete your jail sentence 

In most cases, a driving license suspension may be coupled with a jail term. You must complete your sentence before applying for a driver’s license reinstatement. If the penalty was converted into an alternative program that permits freedom of movement, you must get legal documentation attached to your application for reinstatement. 


Attend your DUI traffic school lessons 

DUI convicts must attend DUI driving lessons to help rehabilitate them back into the system. This would apply to all DUI cases, even if it were a one-time first-time offense.  


There are different DUI driving lessons, and the court will determine how long your program should last, depending on the nature of your case. Typically, the classes can last between three months to 30 months. Once completed, your school will hand you a Notice of Completion, which you will present during the application for reinstatement. 


Fulfill all sentencing conditions 

DUI penalties often come with dozens of conditions specified by the court. For instance, some may require complete drug treatment, including spending time at a rehabilitation facility. In other cases, you may enroll in a deterrence program, such as installing an interlock device on your vehicle. These terms must be met before you can be reinstated into the traffic system. 


However, if you are on a probation sentence that lasts longer than your driving license suspension, the law allows you to apply for reinstatement as you continue serving your probation. 


Do you have car insurance? 

The law also requires you to provide proof of insurance by filling out form SR-22 from your insurance company. You also have to subscribe to a special kind of insurance associated with the SR-22 form, which may include putting down a $35,000 cash deposit as surety. 


Submit your application for reinstatement 

Once you have checked all the conditions above, you can visit the DMV department and submit your application. The DMV office will then process your application and keep you appraised. You will need to pay a reinstatement fee of varying amounts depending on the nature of your case. 


Is it worth it? Better contact a DUI lawyer 

Getting your driving license reinstated after a DUI suspension is a cumbersome and expensive process that you wish to avoid. You can do this by not driving while under the influence. However, if the worst happens and your license gets suspended on DUI charges, you should contact an experienced DUI lawyer who can guide you through the case hearing. 


There are many factors that the court has to consider before suspending your license under DUI charges, and no one knows the gimmicks of corridors of justice better than a DUI attorney. A legal professional can argue for a reduced suspension time or, even better, win you the case entirely. Get in touch with a qualified DUI lawyer today.