I got a DWI. What do I need to do in order to get my license reinstated?
- You must obtain a certificate of completion. A certificate of completion can be obtained by:
- a) Completing a substance abuse assessment at an authorized NC DWI Services provider, and
- b) Completing the recommended level of treatment or education (ADETS) at an authorized NC DWI Services provider.
- You must also wait for the revocation period imposed by DMV to be up and pay the required fees to the DMV.
I need to complete an assessment for my DWI charge and then complete the recommended level of treatment or ADETS (education). Where do I go to do this?
- You must complete your assessment and recommended treatment or education at an Authorized DWI Services Provider.
- You may choose any provider you’d like, regardless of location.
- You do not have to complete your treatment where you had your assessment. Your assessment can be transferred to any authorized DWI facility in NC and you ALWAYS have a choice of where to take your classes.
What documents do I need to bring to the DWI assessment?
- A copy of citation (if available)
- Documentation of Blood Alcohol Content at time of offense
- Complete Driving Record from other states in which you have resided
How much will my DWI assessment cost?
- $100 plus $10 for the driving record.
I completed my assessment. How long can I wait before starting the recommended treatment or education?
- 6 months. (After 6 months, the assessment expires and you will have to complete and pay for another assessment.)
What requirements would I have to meet in order to be eligible to be referred to Alcohol and Drug Education Traffic School (ADETS) instead of treatment?
- You have no previous DWI offense conviction in your lifetime, and
- You did not refuse to submit to a chemical test, and
- Your BAC was 0.14% or less at the time of your arrest, and
- Your assessment does not identify a substance abuse handicap (i.e. abuse or dependence), and
- You meet the admission criteria for Level 0.5 (Early Intervention) of ASAM PPC-2
How much does ADETS (education program) cost and how many contact hours is the program?
- Cost: $160
- Hours: 16 contact hours over a minimum of 5 days
If I don’t qualify for ADETS (education), what are the other levels of treatment that I could be recommended to complete?
- Short Term Outpatient Treatment – (Minimum of 20 contact hours over a minimum of 30 days). Short Term Outpatient Treatment ranges from 20-39 hours.
- Longer Term Outpatient Treatment – (Minimum 40 contact hours over a minimum of 60 days). Longer Term Outpatient Treatment ranges from 40-89 hours.
- Day Treatment/Intensive Outpatient Treatment – (Minimum 90 hours over a minimum of 90 days)
- Inpatient/Residential Treatment – (Minimum 90 days)
How much does treatment cost?
- Treatment costs are not mandated by statute, and thus vary from agency to agency.
Our cost for treatment is indicated below:
- Short Term Outpatient Treatment – $20.00 per hour
- Longer Term Outpatient Treatment – $20.00 per hour
We offer a 10% discount to veterans and for all other clients we offer a $50.00 discount for Paying in full at the time you begin your classes.
We offer insurance discounts to our first-time offender clients through several participating insurance agencies. Most of our clients tell us they are paying less now for their insurance than before they received their DWI charge/conviction.
Will I have to complete ADETS (education) and treatment for the same conviction?
- No. Your DWI assessment will recommend that you complete ADETS (education) or treatment.
I live in another state, but was convicted of a DWI in North Carolina. What must I do to clear the block off my license from North Carolina?
- You must complete a substance abuse assessment, substance abuse education, and/or substance abuse treatment in your state (outside of North Carolina).
- Documentation of the out-of-state assessment, treatment, and/or education must be reviewed and approved by an authorized North Carolina DWI services provider.
- We are an authorized DWI Provider and will complete the review, process the information, and complete a Certificate of Completion (e-508 form) to resolve the outstanding DWI offense on your North Carolina record. (You will receive a copy of the certificate). We also guarantee our services. Many providers do these, yet, you want to choose a provider that will follow up and make sure the clearance has been completed whether it is an out of state review in North Carolina or another state that the DWI charge and conviction occurred.
I completed a program while I was in the military or while I was incarcerated. May the program/services be used to meet my requirements?
- It depends on the content of the program/services
- Contact us, as we are an authorized provider from North Carolina who will conduct a review of the program/services that you completed
- If the content of the program/services are deemed appropriate, we will initiate clearance of your North Carolina charges and will generate the Certificate of Completion (508-R Form) that is required by DMV to lift the “block” off of your license.
I received a Driving While License Revoked conviction while I was suspended due to a DWI conviction. Does this conviction require another assessment?
- Yes. An assessment is required through an authorized DWI Service provider. Depending on the results of the assessment, you may be required to complete more treatment.
Does it make a difference when I do my assessment and treatment?
- Yes, in some situations, your assessment and beginning treatment before your final court date will result in a Mitigating Factor (good factor) that will be considered during the sentencing phase of your DWI if you are convicted.
- Also, if you wait until you go to your final court date, there is a good chance that your assessment will have expired as most cases do not complete to the sentencing phase until after the six months’ expiration date, thus, you must pay for another $100.00 assessment. Most of my clients tell me they are so glad they took their classes before standing before the Judge.
- If you have any aggravating factors, you want to do anything that you can that will give you some mitigating factors to help you as some mitigating factors will weigh out some aggravating factors thus giving you a better level of sentencing.
I took the DART Program or another program while in prison, will this count towards clearing my DWI charges?
- Under most circumstances if the treatment was taken after the DWI charge, we can count this and do a REVIEW of the treatment to determine if it is eligible to be counted. This is often done here at BK Professional Counseling Center and we will gladly look at your case to determine if we can go ahead and clear the DWI charge with the treatment you have already taken.
- If we can count this treatment, you will only have to have a $100 DWI Assessment and pay for any other outstanding DWI Assessments of $100.00 each including any DWLR that are applicable and incur a charge of $100.00 for the REVIEW without having to take anymore classes if we accept your classes from prison. Call today to schedule your assessment and review.
Do not hesitate to contact us through email under the contact us section to schedule an assessment or to address any questions you may have that are not covered under our FAQ section.
We are here to help you get through this process. It does not have to be a bad experience and our clients tell us they are so glad they came to us to complete their assessment and classes as it was so different than they expected. They are now very thankful they have learned their lesson and so much more than they ever thought they would learn from this charge and verbalize a desire to continue to make positive changes in their lives that they started while attending group therapy here at BKPCC.
DUI & DWI Basics
What do DUI & DWI mean?
Both DUI and DWI are acronyms. “DUI” stands for “driving under the influence” and “DWI” stands for “driving while intoxicated” (or sometimes, “driving while impaired”).
While DUI and DWI are the most common ways to refer to drunk or impaired driving, some states use other terms, such as “operating under the influence” (OUI), “operating while intoxicated” (OWI), and “driving while ability impaired” (DWAI).
What is a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) percentage?
Extremely simply put, a person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC)—sometimes referred to as blood alcohol content or just blood alcohol level—is a measurement of how much alcohol is in a person’s system.
Most commonly, states use breathalyzers and/or blood tests to determine a person’s BAC; urine tests are still available, but many states are eliminating them due to unreliability.
Currently, each state has set the criminal blood alcohol level at or above 0.08%; however, that doesn’t mean alcohol won’t start affecting you before you reach that point.
Also, this percentage (or even “zero tolerance”) can vary depending on extenuating factors such as the driver’s age and any ongoing penalties the driver might be serving already.
How do drugs relate to DUI?
Whether they’re illegal drugs, prescription medicines, or over the counter (OTC) medications, drugs can impair your ability to drive by producing several side effects, such as:
- Delayed reaction times.
- Blurred vision.
- Dizziness or fainting.
- Inability to focus.
- Delusion and hallucinations.
Unlike with alcohol levels, currently no standardized limit for drug impairment exists; however, that does not make drug-impaired driving legal.
Why is impaired driving so dangerous?
Alcohol and drugs can impair you mentally, emotionally, and physically which makes it difficult for you to concentrate on driving safely. By driving under the influence, not only do you put your life at risk, but also the lives of others.
DUI Arrests & Penalties
What is a DUI checkpoint?
Also known as a sobriety checkpoint, a DUI checkpoint is a designated location at which law enforcement officers stop and check drivers for signs of alcohol or drug impairment.
DUI checkpoint laws vary by state. Some states use them as part of statewide programs to deter impaired driving; others avoid them altogether. Refer to your State Highway Safety Office to learn more about the legality and use of DUI checkpoints in your state.
What happens if I’m arrested for DUI?
The exact legal process will vary depending on your jurisdiction’s laws, and possibly your specific situation.
However, after an officer has pulled you over and determined you’re driving under the influence (generally using field sobriety tests, chemical tests, or both), you can expect to:
- Have your vehicle impounded.
- Be taken into custody.
- At this point, you will be “booked” for driving under the influence.
- Custody length varies. Sometimes it’s until you can get a ride or sober up; other times it’s until you can go before a judicial officer such as a magistrate and have an arraignment.
- You might have to pay a bail or bond before being released.
- Have your license suspended or receive temporary driving privileges.
- Until your official trial determines your exact penalties.
- Have your official trial scheduled.
- Be assigned a court-appointed attorney (also known as a public defender) or hire your own private DUI lawyer.
Once that’s all said and done, you’ll attend your official hearing and receive your judgment and any associated penalties.
What are common DUI penalties?
DUI penalties vary based on several factors such as state laws, the severity of the offense, and whether you’ve had prior DUI convictions.
However, some of the most common DUI penalties include:
- Hefty fines.
- License suspension or revocation.
- You’ll acquire driving record points.
- Your conviction will remain your driving record for a certain time period.
- Installation of an ignition interlock device.
- Typically, these are out-of-pocket expenses for you.
- Alcohol and/or drug counseling programs. In order to get your license reinstated after your conviction, you are required to have an assessment and education, or treatment based on the results of the assessment prior to getting your license back. Most of my folks take their classes prior to court so they have a MITIGATING FACTOR WHEN YOU GO TO COURT. This is the only proactive action you can take prior to court that counts as a mitigating factor (good event) when you go before the Judge. Legislation states that you must have begun your classes to count as a mitigating factor, you do not necessarily have them completed, yet, you do not want to stop once you have begun your classes as if you do, you will end up having to pay for another assessment and begin your classes all over again. We guarantee our services. Not all DWI/Substance Abuse Treatment Centers are the same and you need to make sure you choose a reputable DWI facility.
- Completion of a DWI assessment and recommended treatment or education.
- Jail time.
Can I lose my driver’s license forever?
Driver’s license suspension or revocation is a common DUI penalty; though, like other penalties, the length varies based on state laws, offense severity, and prior convictions.
However, it is possible to lose your driving privileges for life. Generally, states that impose such laws reserve them for offenders who have been convicted of driving under the influence many times or who have committed a particularly heinous felony offense.
Is DUI a misdemeanor or felony charge?
Whether your DUI conviction is a misdemeanor or felony depends on your state laws and the circumstances surrounding the offense.
Generally, misdemeanor charges are your basic DUI offenses. Generally, a conviction is a misdemeanor when:
- Your BAC isn’t too much over the legal limit.
- There was no personal injury or death involved.
- You don’t have prior convictions.
On the other hand, felony DUI often involve:
- High BAC.
- A child passenger.
- A personal injury or death.
- Prior convictions.
- Driving while your license is already suspended or revoked.
Afelony DUI conviction carries much harsher penalties than does a misdemeanor charge.
DUI & Your Records
Do I get a criminal record for a DUI?
Yes. Driving under the influence is a criminal offense; therefore, it goes on your criminal record. NC KEEPS YOUR DWI ON YOUR LICENSE FOR LIFE.
Depending on your state’s laws and the specific circumstances, you might be able to have your record expunged.
How long will a DUI stay on my driving record?
Once again, this depends on your state laws, as well as whether the conviction was a misdemeanor or felony.
Understand that—mostly in cases of felony convictions—some states keep the conviction on your record for life.
Does a DUI conviction show up on a background check?
Typically, yes; however, it can depend on how thorough the background check is and how far back the check goes.
Keep in might that criminal background checks—which focus more on criminal convictions than do regular background checks—might always show your DUI conviction (unless your record has been expunged). A DWI/DUI IS NOT EXPUNGABLE IN NC UNLESS YOU ARE UNDER 21 AT THE TIME OF THE OFFENSE AND THAT VARIES FROM STATE TO STATE.
Will a DUI affect my car insurance?
Yes. Once you’ve been convicted of driving under the influence, your car insurance provider will view you as a “high risk” driver and typically either will increase your rates or disqualify you from renewing your policy.
Also, you might have to file SR-22 or FR-44 forms. Neither is a type of car insurance—rather:
- SR-22 proves you’ve purchased your state’s car insurance requirements and that you keep the coverage for a specific amount of time.
- FR-44 requires you to purchase car insurance limits higher than your state’s minimum requirements.
Most states use SR-22, but your judge will inform you about your requirements. For more, check out our guide to the SR-22 form.
WE AT BKPCC HAVE SEVERAL INSURANCE COMPANIES THAT WORK WITH US AND OUR CLIENTS TO MAKE SURE YOU GET THE BEST RATES POSSIBLE. MY CLIENTS HAVE TOLD ME THEY NOW HAVE BETTER INSURANCE AND HAVE BETTER COVERAGE AND ARE PAYING SOMETIMES LESS THAN BEFORE THEY RECEIVED THEIR DWI POINTS. DO NOT OFFER THIS INFORMATION TO YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY, ALLOW THEM TO FIND IT AND ONCE THEY DO, WE HAVE WHAT YOU NEED TO GET AN EXCELLENT PRICE ON GREAT INSURANCE THAT IS NOT BOUGHT ONLINE LIKE GEICO. ONCE YOU RECEIVE THIS DISCOUNT IF YOU COME FOR A DWI THEN ACCORDING TO MY CLIENTS THEY ARE SAVING MORE ON THEIR INSURANCE THAN THEIR ASSESSMENT AND TREATMENT COST THEMJUST THE FIRST YEAR OF SAVINGS, THE SECOND AND THIRD ARE ICING ON THE CAKE FOR SOME FOLKS. THAT PUTS YOUR TREATMENT AT FREE FOR MOST FOLKS UTILIZING OUR PROGRAM AND THE “PERKS” THAT GO WITH CHOOSING US FOR YOUR DWI ASSESSMENT AND TREATMENT NEEDS. WE PROVIDE SEVERAL SERVICES THAT OTHER FACILITIES CHARGE FOR THAT WE DO NOT.
DUI & Legal Needs
Should I hire a DUI lawyer?
Whether your charge is a misdemeanor or felony, it will bring serious penalties related to both your driving privileges and personal life. For example, not only will you face license suspension or revocation, but also a criminal record.
However, if you can’t afford to private attorney, the court will appoint you a public defender (see below).
What if I can’t afford my own attorney?
Typically, if you can’t afford to hire your own attorney, the court will court appoint you a public defender.
Because public defenders generally have a much heavier workload than private lawyers, make sure to regularly stay in touch with your public defender for updates and to find out what you can do to help. Please remember that this “court-appointed” attorney is not free. You are oftentimes put on Probation for your first offense DWI to pay the lawyer fees and any other court fees you have incurred. So, no the attorney is not free, you will be placed on probation and then pay them $40.00 per month in addition to a monthly payment for the court-appointed attorney and any fees outstanding such as court fines etc. You will also be required to report to Probation, so you do not want to go on Probation if there is any other way to take care of the fees while your case is in court. You have approximately a year before your case is heard and that is a great opportunity to start saving for the day you go to court. You do not have to have an attorney, you can get an attorney for the sake of getting your driving privileges if eligible, yet, hiring an attorney does not oftentimes result in anything other than a conviction due to the number of arrest and convictions in this County and surrounding counties being so high and the requirements to find someone not guilty of a DWI charge are difficult to meet with new guidelines for Prosecutors etc. I would highly recommend that you find an attorney that provides a free consultation prior to deciding about an attorney. We work with many attorneys in this area and have been for ten years. There are several great attorneys out there and speaking to a good attorney can help put things in perspective and offer you information that you were not aware of. Have your questions ready for your consultation with an attorney so you can make an informed decision about whether hiring an attorney will help your case. (PLEASE NOTE THE LETTER THAT DISCUSSES WHAT HAPPENS WHEN A PROSECUTOR DECIDES TO DISMISS OR FIND A DWI DEFENDANT NOT GUILTY).
Sentencing for a DUI
If you plead guilty or are found to be guilty by a jury, a judge will decide your sentence of punishment.
There are different avenues that the judge might take, depending on the severity of your charges and how frequently you’ve been convicted for DWI. The varying sentences include:
- Ignition interlock devices.
- You are required to blow into a Breathalyzer anytime you need to start your car.
- DUI school and addiction treatment programs.
- You are required to attend mandatory classes on alcohol education/treatment and/or attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings or rehab.
- Most people who receive this type of sentencing canretain their driving privileges once they’ve completed the program.
- Revoking/suspending your license.
- This sentence is usually applied to repeat DUI offenders and takes away your legal right to drive for a specified amount of time.
- This usually applies to repeat offenders who have also put other people’s lives in danger.
- Car impoundment.
- The court can take your car away from you for a specified amount of time, or even completely, depending on the severity of the charges.
Appealing DUI Charges
If you still feel that you were wrongly convicted, you can try file an appeal. You will need to hire an appeal lawyer to present your case to a higher court.
You will only be able to ask for an appeal if you believe that there were procedural or substantive errors during your trial:
- A procedural error is one that has to do with decisions that were made during key moments of the trial. For example, your attorney might have talked you into pleading “guilty” at some point, but you believe that you had enough evidenceto yield a “not guilty” verdict.
- A substantive error is one that has to do with the evidence or testimonies presented during trial. For example, there might have been certain confessions or pieces of evidence that were not allowed to be presented at your first trial but would have really helped your case.
Your attorney will argue that you deserve either to be tried again or that a mistrial be declared and the charges against you dismissed. The state’s prosecution will also be there to argue that the guilty verdict should be upheld.
NOTE: It can take a long time for your appeal to be heard (months or years). It’s wise to plan your future following a guilty DUI charge accordingly.
Driver’s License Suspension in NC
Your North Carolina driver’s license can be suspended or revoked by the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) for several reasons, including:
- Reckless driving.
- DWI, or refusing to take a blood or breath test.
- Accumulating driver’s license points.
About Your NC Suspended License
If your North Carolina driver’s license is suspended by the NC DMV, you will be notified immediately in writing.
The suspension period varies based on the reason for the suspension.
To reinstate your driver’s license once your DMV suspension period has ended, you will have to:
- Pay restoration fees
- Apply for a new NC driver’s license.
- This may involve taking a written test and/or driving test again.
In addition to DMV suspensions, your license can be suspended as part of a criminal court sentence or by the request of another agency. For example, failure to pay child support can lead to a suspension of your driver’s license.
To reinstate your license after a suspension initiated by the court or another agency, you may have to meet their additional requirements before your driver’s license can be reinstated.
NOTE: A driver’s license suspension becomes part of your official, permanent North Carolina driving record.
Suspension vs. Revocation
A revoked license is a bit different from a suspended license. A revoked license means your driving privileges are rescinded for longer periods of time; they typically result from more serious violations. Either way, you’ve lost your driving privileges.
Length of Suspension
The length of a driver’s license suspension depends on the reason it was suspended. Common causes for suspension and the length of the first suspension include:
|First DWI offense||1 year|
|Second DWI offense||4 years|
|Third DWI offense||Permanent|
|Refusing to take a breath or blood test||1 year|
|Death by vehicle (misdemeanor)||1 year|
|Death by vehicle (felony)||Permanent|
|Obtaining a driver’s license/permit using false information||1 year|
|Placing bets, watching, or loaning out a car for racing||3 years|
|Intentionally racing another vehicle||3 years|
|Speeding at least 15 MPH over the limit of 55 MPH||30 days|
|Speeding at least 15 MPH over the limit of 55 MPH (second offense)||60 days|
|Speeding at least 15 MPH over the limit of 55 MPH while avoiding arrest||1 year|
|Driving without insurance or letting your insurance lapse||30 days|
Your license can also be suspended for:
- Having 2 convictions of speeding (over 55 MPH) in 12 months.
- Having 1 conviction of speeding (over 55 MPH) and 1 conviction of reckless driving in 1 year.
- Part of a sentence or suspended court sentence that revokes your driving privileges.
- A conviction for speeding over 75 MPH.
Provisional License Suspensions
If you are younger than 18 years old, you face suspension of up to 6 months, depending on how many violations you’ve committed.
Driver’s License Points Suspension
One of the most common causes for a suspended North Carolina driver’s license is the accumulation of driver’s license points. Your driving record shows the points currently accumulated against your NC driver’s license.
Points are put on your driving record for moving violations and other infractions. The amount of points you get will depend on the violation.
Once you receive 7 points, you may be required to attend a Driver Improvement Clinic. Completing this clinic will remove 3 points from your license. You can only attend a Driver Improvement clinic 1 time in a 5-year period. In order to reduce your points, you will need to qualify and complete a conference with a driver license hearing officer.
Your driver’s license will be suspended if you accumulate 12 points or more in 3 years (or 8 points or more in the 3 years following a license suspension). Suspension length is dependent upon the number of suspensions you’ve had:
- First suspension: 60 days maximum.
- Second suspension: 6 months maximum.
- Any subsequent suspensions: 1 year.
Traffic School & Point Reduction
A driver improvement clinic can help you reduce points and may even get you lower insurance rates.
Check Your License Status
A driver’s license suspension becomes part of your
official, permanent North Carolina driving record. Your driving record is a comprehensive view of your driving history and includes any accidents, moving violations, tickets, etc.
Your driving history can affect factors like:
- Car insurance rates.
- Employment opportunities.
- Background checks.
You may look up your own driving record on-line for a $10.00 charge by going to www.ncdot.gov
Hearings and Appeals
Once you receive notification that your license has been suspended by the DMV, you may be able request an administrative hearing, depending on the reason for the suspension.
If you request a hearing, you will retain your license and driving privileges until the hearing.
To request a hearing or find out if you are eligible for one, contact the central DMV office in Raleigh:
- By phone: (919) 715-7000.
- By mail:
Driver License Hearings
3118 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27697
You are also able to appeal the decision of the first hearing to the NC Superior Court. Appeals must be made within 30 days
Reinstate Your North Carolina License
To reinstate your suspended driver’s license once your DMV suspension or revocation period is over, you will need to:
- Go to a NC DMV Office
- Pay the restoration and service fees.
- (See “Fees to Reinstate Your NC License” below).
- Apply for a new NC driver’s license.
- Depending on the reason(s) for your suspension, you may have to take the written test and/or driving test.
Once your license is reinstated, any driver’s license points leading to your suspension are canceled.
If your license has been suspended as part of a criminal court sentence or non-driving-related reasons (e.g., failure to pay child support), you may have to take additional steps before you can have your license reinstated.
These extra steps may include paying court fees, paying fines, or acquiring paperwork from a court or agency showing that you are eligible for reinstatement.
For questions, you can call the DMV’s customer service at (919) 715-7000.
Fees to Reinstate Your NC Driver’s License
Fees to reinstate a suspended license include:
- Restoration of driver’s license: $65.
- Restoration following a DWI conviction: $130
- Service fee: $50.
- Does not apply if you surrendered your license to the DMV prior to the effective date of suspension.
Restoration and service fees are payable by any of the following:
- Money order.
- Personal check.
DWI Suspensions in NC
A conviction for driving while intoxicated (DWI) will result in a mandatory driver’s license suspension by the DMV. Once the DMV is notified by the court of your conviction, it will suspend your license immediately. *
In addition to these DMV suspensions, you can also face immediate suspension of your driver’s license during a traffic stop or certain violations:
- Refusal to take a blood or breath test: 1-year revocation of your license.This means you have lost your license automatically with DMV for refusing to blow in the breathalyzer even if not convicted in court as it’s a mandatory sentence for refusing to blow. When you sign for your driver’s license you give them INFORMED CONSENT which means that anyone that puts their signature on their driver’s license agrees to have their blood, breath or urine taken if an officer believes you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol or both.
- 30 days for a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher (0.04% or higher if you are driving a commercial vehicle).
* Note that you may also be subject to additional criminal penalties and fines imposed by the court. ALSO REMEMBER, IT ONLY TAKES A .04 TO GET A SECOND DWI CHARGE AFTER YOU HAVE RECEIVED A FIRST CONVICTION. THIS IS NORMALLY AROUND ONE DRINK. THIS IS VALID FOR THREE YEARS AFTER YOUR FIRST CONVICTION.
Other Alcohol-Related Violations
Other alcohol-related violations include:
- Lending your driver’s license or ID to an underage person using it to buy or try to buy alcohol.
- Giving alcohol to an underage person.
If you are convicted, these violations carry a revocation period of 1 year.
Alcohol Violations and Minor Drivers
North Carolina has stricter DWI regulations for drivers under 21 years old, including suspensions for other alcohol-related violations.
Drivers under 21 years old can be charged with a DWI violation for driving with ANY alcohol in their blood. Conviction results in a 1-year revocation of your driver’s license.
Other convictions resulting in revocations of 1 year for underage drivers include:
- Buying or trying to by alcohol.
- Using a fake license or ID to buy or try to buy alcohol.
- Helping another underage person buy or try to buy alcohol.
Hardship Licenses in NC
Certain drivers whose licenses have been revoked are eligible to request limited driving privileges. To apply for a hardship license, you must file a petition with the district court in your county of residence.
The following drivers CANNOT apply for limited driving privileges in NC:
- Drivers suspended for DWI convictions.
- Drivers with multiple concurrent suspensions.
- Drivers who have previously requested a limited license.
- Drivers facing pending charges in NC or any other state.
If you are eligible for a hardship license, you can request it after you’ve complied with your revocation for a certain amount of time.
CDL Suspension in North Carolina
If you have a commercial driver’s license (CDL) in North Carolina, you are subject to higher points and stiffer penalties for violations.
CDL licenses can be suspended or revoked for any of the following offenses:
- Hit and run.
- Using a commercial vehicle in a felony.
- Refusing a blood test.
- Vehicular manslaughter or homicide.
- Driving with a suspended CDL.
Several other offenses carry permanent revocations, including using a commercial vehicle to transport illegal substances and repeated offenses.
Your CDL will be suspended if you get 12 points or more in 3 years, following the same suspension periods as regular driver’s licenses.
One of the worst things you can do after getting convicted of a DWI is to drive without a license. The police cars can run your tag without keying in the information and it will come back that you have a DWI, it does not show you have driving privileges if you do. Three driving while license revoked is permanent revocation of your driver’s license for at least ten years. After ten years without any alcohol related points or any other infractions, you can ask for a hearing to get your license back. It will cost you what the list indicates currently.