In Michigan, if you are convicted of multiple drunk driving offenses within a given period your license will be revoked. If this happens, then the only way to have your license restored is to go through a driver license restoration process with Driver Assessment and Appeal Division (DAAD) of the Secretary of State.
The DAAD will require that you submit to them a substance abuse evaluation. I work with Michigan License Restoration Lawyers and with them have helped dozens of Michigan’s citizens regain their driving privileges.
The substance abuse evaluation must include a prognosis that you are at low or minimal risk for repeat drunk driving. In order to reach this determination I will evaluate you in my office using an interview of you where I learn about your substance abuse and/or alcohol abuse history as well as your history of drunk driving.
Additionally, I will have you submit to a 12-panel urinalysis to make sure you’ve not substituted drugs for alcohol, and finally, I will have you submit to a written test. I will also review your letters of recommendation. If I am satisfied that you are at low or minimal risk for repeat drunk driving, then I will say so in my evaluation. This will assist you greatly in regaining your driving privileges.
Like the citizens of the State of Michigan, and like your DAAD hearing officer, the safety of the public is one of my primary concerns. Accordingly, I cannot make this “low or minimal risk” statement for everyone who comes to see me. If I am not able to do so in your case then I will recommend a treatment plan. After you’ve completed the treatment plan, and demonstrated a history of compliance and of complete abstinence, then I may be able to write an evaluation that will be helpful to you. It will be important for your lawyer to help you understand this complex process, and why we operate in this manner.
It is also possible for you to have your license suspended for an “implied consent” suspension, and this will happen if you refuse the breath or blood test offerred by the police officer after you are arrested for drunk driving. If this happens your lawyer may be able to appeal the suspension to the Circuit Court. The judge hearing the appeal will also want a substance abuse evaluation, and like license revocations, I work with lawyers on a regular basis to provide these evaluations as well.
There is a third type of substance abuse evaluation, and this is the kind your lawyer may request if have been or might be convicted of drunk driving. In these cases your lawyer may request a substance abuse evaluation to show the judge sentencing you that you are responding responsibility to your arrest. The goal of your lawyer will likely be to use my evaluation to keep you out of jail, or limit the total amount of time in jail.
Because my professional reputation is at stake for every substance abuse evaluation I prepare I always endeavor to be complete and accurate and to include in my reports all of the important details.
I think every one’s goal in the criminal justice system is ultimately the same. To make sure that you get the help you need so that you do not re-offend, and to keep the public safe. I take both of these goals very seriously. Because of this belief, and just as with the driver license restoration cases, if I believe you need additional support or treatment the first time we meet, then I will recommend this to you and try to help you find appropriate services.