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Preparing for Your Driver’s License Hearing with the Secretary of State

 Posted on December 17,2020 in DUI

IL defense lawyerDrivers whose licenses have been suspended due to multiple DUI convictions are required to attend a formal Secretary of State hearing before their license can be reinstated. Preparation is key to the outcome of these types of hearings, as petitioners will be required to comply with a host of complicated legal rules, so if your license was recently suspended after being arrested for a DUI, it is important to speak with an experienced Naperville driver’s license suspension lawyer who is well-versed in these rules and procedures and can give your claim the best possible chance of success.

Formal Secretary of State Hearings

The Secretary of State’s office conducts two types of hearings for those seeking reinstatement of their driving privileges after revocation or suspension arising from a DUI conviction: informal hearings and formal hearings. While some petitioners are able to resolve their cases through informal proceedings, most are required to go through the formal hearing process, especially if they have multiple DUI convictions on their record.

Formal hearings must be requested by petitioners, and once scheduled, are conducted by a hearing officer and a representative, both of whom act on behalf of the Secretary of State. These individuals are tasked with deciding whether a petitioner is a risk to the public, or whether he or she is suffering an undue hardship as a result of the loss of his or her driving privileges.

What Documents Will I Need for My Formal Hearing?

Petitioners who are looking to have their licenses reinstated will have the best chance of success if they provide the hearing officer and representative with certain documentary proof that demonstrates that they are not a risk to public safety, including:

  • An alcohol/drug evaluation conducted by a licensed program from the previous six months that records the petitioner’s treatment history
  • Documentation of the petitioner’s completion of risk education treatment, such as a Treatment Verification form and a Continuing Care Plan
  • Proof that the petitioner has received a Treatment Waiver
  • Proof of attendance at a substance use and support group
  • A letter from an evaluator addressing any issues raised during a previous hearing, in which relief was denied

For help collecting this documentary evidence and any other records that could help your case, please call our office today.

The Petitioner’s Testimony

One of the most important aspects of preparing for a formal driver’s license reinstatement hearing is getting ready to provide testimony at the hearing. At these hearings, petitioners should be prepared to answer a wide range of questions (under oath), including questions about:

  • Their alcohol or drug arrest history
  • Their drinking or drug use history
  • Any factors that contributed to their previous history of dependency
  • The benefits of the treatment they have received
  • Any lifestyle changes that they have made
  • Whether they have suffered any hardships as a result of their loss of driving privileges

Only when a petitioner’s testimony is consistent with the information contained in the evaluation records or treatment documentation, will a hearing officer consider reinstating his or her driving privileges.

Contact a DuPage County Driver’s License Suspension Lawyer

To speak with an experienced Naperville driver’s license suspension attorney about getting back on the road after a DUI arrest, please call the Law Office of Patricia Magana, LLC at 630-448-2001 today.




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1555 Bond Street, Suite 103A, Naperville, IL 60563

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