Win Your Lack Of Skill Hearing
While retaining a DMV attorney is always the best way to win your lack of skill hearing, there is no reason you cannot do it yourself with a little preparation. We have compiled all the information you need to beat the Department of Motor Vehicles.
Understand first that a re-examination is not a hearing. Unless the questions raised about your driving pose an immediate threat to public safety, DMV will usually call you in for a re-examination first to determine whether you should be suspended. If the re-examination results in a suspension (or if you were suspended outright without a re-examination), then you have the right to a hearing to challenge that suspension.
5 Steps To Winning Your Lack Of Skill Hearing
There are five steps you must follow to win your lack of skill hearing.
- Learn as best you can the nature of the report made against you and what safety problem it may allegedly pose for your driving. The three most commons ways DMV learns of an alleged lack of skill are (1) direct observation of a motorist at a DMV office or in a driving test; (2) a report from a civilian requesting that the motorist be re-examined; (3) or a report from a peace officer who observes erratic driving or responds to an accident.
- Review the rules of the road pamphlet from DMV. You will almost certainly be required to retake and pass the written test, so there is no reason not to do it now.
- Consider taking some driving lessons from a reputable driving school. Have the instructor certify the hours you took lessons so you can demonstrate your efforts to the hearing officer.
- Practice talking about your condition and the events that brought you to DMV’s attention. Get your spouse or a friend to listen to you and play Devil’s Advocate, asking you questions about what you say. Their goal should be to determine from what you say whether they would let you drive.
- Conduct your hearing with the attitude that you’re just going to explain why you’re a safe driver. Unlike in some other types of DMV hearings, in a lack of skill hearing, you do not ordinarily need to worry about rules of evidence or appellate case law. While these hearings are governed by the same rules as the more common administrative per se hearings, in practice they are less formal and less adversarial. Many hearing officers actually try to help motorists regain their licenses. You can help yourself by recognizing this fact and trying to help the hearing officer help you.
If, despite your best efforts, the hearing officer suspends your license anyway, you will have maximized your chances of overturning the suspension on a writ and forcing DMV to pay your attorney’s fees.