Written by Avvo-rated Top Tampa DUI Attorney John S. Castro 6/06/2014
A .02 (pronounced “point oh-two”) driver’s license suspension occurs when a driver under the legal drinking age of 21 is found to be driving under the influence of alcohol, and has a blood or breath alcohol content greater than .02.
Pursuant to Statute 322.2616(b): “A law enforcement officer who has probable cause to believe that a motor vehicle is being driven by or is in the actual physical control of a person who is under the age of 21 while under the influence of alcoholic beverages or who has any blood-alcohol or breath-alcohol level may lawfully detain such a person and may request that person to submit to a test to determine his or her blood-alcohol or breath-alcohol level.”
Drivers that are 21 or older are assumed impaired ifthey have a breath or blood alcohol content of .08 or higher, and can be charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI). DUI is a criminal offense unlike an .02 suspension which is strictly administrative. Although the penalties for an .02 suspension are not as harsh as a criminal DUI, it is still recorded on the driving record and may have a negative impact on future career or education choices.
Duration of License Suspension
If an underage driver has a blood alcohol level of above .02, the driver’s license is immediately suspended for 6 months for a first violation and automatically suspended for 12 months if a breath, blood, or urine test is refused. If the driver has a breath or blood alcohol content of .05 or greater, their license may be suspended for a longer period of time and reinstated contingent upon their completion of a substance abuse course. If however, the driver’s breath or blood alcohol content is greater than .08, a .02 suspension no longer applies and the driver will be charged with a DUI.
Challenging the Suspension
The person who receives a .02 suspension may request an informal or formal review hearing of the suspension within 10 days of the offense. The hearing is conducted by a field officer, not a judge, who ultimately determines whether or not law enforcement complied with the rules and regulations associated with the suspension. If the challenge is successful, the driver’s record could be cleared and the driver’s license reinstated.
Protect Your Child’s Rights. Get an Attorney Familiar with .02 Suspension Rules & Procedures
It is imperative to hire an attorney familiar with the administrative rules and procedures associated with an .02 suspension to protect you or your child’s rights. Tampa DUI attorney John Castro of Anton Castro Law is well experienced in this area of law and ready to answer any questions regarding this topic.
For more information or to seek representation for a .02 Suspension or DUI, you can contact our office at 813-907-9807 or request a free consultation from Attorney John Castro by filling out the consultation request form online.