ALS Drivers License Suspension in Ohio

An Administrative License Suspension (ALS) involves suspending a driver license in an OVI. It occurs before any initial court proceedings. The officer will take the driver’s license. In an OVI, it occurs two ways: either the driver refuses a chemical test or fails the alcohol test. For a first offense failure, the ALS lasts 90 days while a refusal lasts 1 year. The ALS is immediately imposed by the BMV. Driving privileges are permitted after 15 days for a failed test and 30 days for a refusal. For a second offense refusal within 10 years, the suspension is for two years with driving privileges after 90 days. For a second offense failure, the suspension lasts one year with driving privileges after 45 days. For a third and fourth OVI, the ALS is for a much longer time with a longer duration before the court will grant driving privileges.

Can You Appeal an ALS Driver's License Suspension in Ohio?

An ALS can be appealed by making an oral motion at the initial appearance or within 30 days of that appearance. That appearance must occur within 5 days of the arrest. The burden to prove the invalidity of the ALS rests with the one charged with the OVI. The appeal is limited to determining whether:

  • The officer had reasonable grounds to believe you were committing an OVI offense
    The officer had probable cause to make an OVI arrest;
  • The officer properly informed the offender of Ohio’s implied consent law and consequences of a refusal;
  • The officer informed the offender to submit to the chemical tests;
  • The officer showed that the failed tests showed a prohibitive level of alcohol in violation of a statute or municipal code.

The offender must prove the failed appeal by a preponderance of the evidence that one or more of the conditions were not met. If proven, the ALS will terminate. The court may, however, enter a new suspension if the offender’s continued driving is a threat to the public safety. If not, the court will send notice to the BMV registrar with an order to release the driver license back to the offender. The court will also send a court order allowing the offender to get operating privileges within ten days from the date of issuance.

How Long is an OVI Administrative License Suspension (ALS) in Ohio?

If the ALS is not terminated, it will remain until the suspension length is over or there is an adjudication on the merits. If a refusal, the ALS suspension will continue even if there is a finding of not guilty. If found not guilty from a failed test, the ALS will terminate.

What Is the Reinstatement Fee After an ALS License Suspension?

When the ALS suspension is over, a reinstatement fee of $475.00 paid to the BMV is required before you can get a new driver license. Proof of insurance must also be shown. There is a reinstatement fee plan that allows a $50.00 a month payment to be paid toward the reinstatement balance until paid in full.

About the Authors: Sawan & Sawan is a multi-generational, family owned law firm practicing law in the areas of car accidents, truck accidents, and other personal injury. Our firm practices law in Ohio and Michigan.

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Dennis P. Sawan

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Christopher A. Sawan

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