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DMV New Rules: Will You Have to Pay for a DMV Administrative Hearing?

Posted by Josh Valentine | Oct 23, 2017 | 0 Comments

North Carolina's license reinstatement process resembles that of the majority of states in the nation. This process entails that state motorists who break traffic laws and get their licenses rescinded undergo their suspension or revocation periods. Once this period comes to an end, residents typically pay restoration fees and reapply for their license.

Drivers are also granted the option of requesting an administrative hearing. An administrative hearing - whether it be for a DWI, interlock device, excessive speeding, permanent revocation etc. - allows drivers to make case for an appeal, with the help of a legal professional, in an effort to either completely retain their license or reduce the suspension or revocation period significantly.

As of now, these hearings are available to the public at no cost. However, come January 2018, it's going to cost drivers a pretty penny to try to get their license back once it is suspended or revoked. The North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles plans to begin charging fees for administrative hearings. According to recent articles, the fees will affect a total of 19 various types of DMV hearings with prices that range from $40 to a whopping $1,200. This price does not include the sum of money that is required for a license to be reinstated.

For example, DWI administrative hearings, which have become increasingly popular in recent years, will cost $425. Motorists with a successful DWI appeal will have to pay the DMV fee for a hearing on top of the existing reinstatement fee, which is currently $130.

The new regulations will undoubtedly affect everyday drivers, commercial drivers, and businesses that handle license certifications. As expected, the decision has spawned conflicting opinions. But there were two main opinions that were continually expressed in public opinion hearings held by the DMV this month. 

Some people asserted that since drivers are at fault for having their licenses suspended or revoked, then they are the ones who should pay for their own transgressions, not taxpayers.

“I don't think it's up to the taxpayers to pay for somebody else's fault,” said business owner Mike Hannon. “We abide by the rules that the state wants us recertified every couple years. And we do it in advance to get it done.”

However, other people suspected that the new fees have little to do with personal accountability, and more to do with possible DMV budget cuts. This inclination was inspired by the decision of North Carolina lawmakers to direct the fees to cover its operating budget of $3.37 million this year.

The DMV has offered the option of waiving hearing fees for people who may not be able to afford fees on the costlier side, they are just required to meet criteria set by the department.

North Carolina Defense Attorneys

If you've been charged with a DWI, excessive speeding, or any other traffic offense that compromised your driving privileges, you should consult with a knowledgeable defense attorney. The legal professionals at Caulder & Valentine have extensive experience representing people who have been in your shoes. Contact us today for a consultation.

About the Author

Josh Valentine

All through my life, I have personally witnessed family members and very close friends endure divorce, child custody battles, bankruptcy, civil lawsuits and even fraudulent criminal accusations. I both saw and experienced the stress such events can place on an individual, and I realized that everyone, at some point in their life, needs hope, comfort, and encouragement. In each one of those situations, the person that was best situated to provide that vital support was their lawyer.  So that's why I became an attorney.  I understand what you are going through—and I'm here to help you.  Our office is focused on meeting your needs and guiding you through what may be the most difficult time of your life. Before attending law school, I worked for a law firm focused on record clearing services, including expungements, pardons, and motions for appropriate relief.  The vast experience and understanding of North Carolina's expungement laws that I have acquired has given me an advantage in defending criminal charges, because not only do I fight for the best possible outcome in your case, but I am also continually conscious of the long term effects that a criminal charge or conviction can have on a person's life.  As such, I will do whatever I can to insure that my clients will not end up with a criminal record.  I was born in New London, Connecticut, but spent the first few years of my life in Dallas, Texas, before moving to Rutherfordton, North Carolina in 2001.  Upon graduating from high school, I attended Gardner-Webb University in Boiling Springs, North Carolina, where I majored in Accounting.  Eager to finish school, I began law school at Charlotte School of Law the day of my graduation from GWU, and completed my law degree in two years (instead of the typical three). During law school, I studied hard and strived to acquire the most experience possible so that I would be practice ready upon graduation.  The opportunities I gained included prosecuting criminal defendants through an externship with the Burke County District Attorney's Office, defending criminal defendants through Charlotte School of Law's Criminal Justice Clinic, and interning with Farmer & Morris, PLLC. I am blessed with a beautiful wife, Gabrielle Valentine, who is an attorney at Farmer & Morris, PLLC, in Rutherfordton, North Carolina.  In my free time, I enjoy helping with the youth group in my church, playing basketball and softball in our local church leagues, serving in the prison ministry, and spending time with my family.  Education: Charlotte School of Law J.D., Magna Cum Laude Class Rank – 21 of 328 Associate Editor of Charlotte School of Law Law Review Certification and Concentration in Employment Law Phi Delta Phi International Legal Honor Society Order of the Crown Pro Bono Honors CALI Awards (Highest Grade)—Lawyering Process I and Contracts I Full Scholarship Gardner-Webb University B.S. in Accounting, Summa Cum Laude Distinguished Senior Student Award – Highest GPA Alpha Sigma Lambda National Honorary Society Bar Admissions: North Carolina State Bar


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