Can I Drive After Being Arrested for a DWI?


Am I going to lose my license after I was arrested for a DWI?

For the time-being, yes you will. Unfortunately, North Carolina state law has a specific statute which was enacted to revoke a person’s driver’s license in specific circumstances. One exclusion to the circumstance is if you were arrested for driving while impaired and the believed impairing substance was drugs. In that case, if your license was not suspended at the time of driving, you will be able to drive and license not suspended.

However, a person’s driver’s license is revoked in the following four circumstances:

  • When taken into custody and asked to blow into an intoxalizer and you willfully refuse to submit to two blows.

  • It is determined that you have an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more within a relevant time after the driving.

  • It is determined that you have an alcohol concentration of 0.04 or more at any relevant time after driving a commercial motor vehicle.

  • You are under the age of 21 and have ANY alcohol concentration at any relevant time after driving.

The law enforcement officer must have reasonable grounds to believe that you committed a DWI, must charge you with a DWI, and (most important) comply with all of the procedures that are set out in North Carolina General Statutes in requiring your submission to and/or getting a blood alcohol concentration. If not specifically followed, you may contest the validity of the revocation. It is best to call Jetton & Meredith, PLLC when you want to contest the validity of the revocation. It is key to hire an experienced DWI attorney before contesting the revocation.

Can I obtain a limited driving privilege?

In order to obtain a limited driving privilege during the revoked period of time, you must:

  • Hold a valid driver’s license or your license had been expired for less than one year;

  • NOT have a pending charge involving impaired driving except the charge in which the license is currently revoked;

  • License has been revoked for at least 10 days if the revocation is for 30 days or 30 days if the revocation is for 45 days; AND

  • Obtain a substance abuse assessment from a mental health facility and register for and agree to participate in any recommended treatment or program.

How long is my license revoked for?

The period your license is revoked for is 30 days unless there are pending offenses for which your driver’s license had been or is revoked already. If at the time of the current offense, you have one or more pending offenses for which your license had been or is revoked, the revocation shall remain in effect until a FINAL judgment, including all appeals, has been entered for the current offense and for all pending offenses.

If no pending offenses, you must pay a $100.00 fee to the clerk of court to reinstate and get back your driver’s license. If the fee is never paid then your license is never reinstated or given back to you.