Getting you back in your car after a DUI arrest

Posted by Lauren V. Iannelli | May 14, 2019 | 0 Comments

If you have been charged with Refusal to submit to a chemical test under Rhode Island General Laws § 31-27-2.1, a Judge or Magistrate can suspend your license to operate a motor vehicle at arraignment, which usually occurs anywhere from a week or two after you have been arrested. If you are employed, how will you get to work without a license to drive your car?

                If you are charged with a first offense then then you may be eligible for a “conditional hardship license”, which will allow you to operate a vehicle upon installation of an ignition interlock device. The ignition interlock device can be installed easily by a professional and requires the operator of the vehicle to blow into a tube in order to start the vehicle and blow into the tube periodically to keep the vehicle running. A conditional hardship license can be given in order to get to work, school, medical appointments, unemployment training and more. 

                If you have been charged with Driving Under the Influence, under Rhode Island General Laws §31-27-2, and it is your first offense, you are facing anywhere from a minimum 1 to 18 month loss of license. Even though you may be able to drive until you are convicted with this offense, what happens after a conviction? Upon a plea or admission, you may be eligible for a conditional hardship license.

What is a Conditional Hardship License?

                Upon showing the Judge or Magistrate that you need to drive in order to get to work, get to medical appointments, school, job training, or any other valid reason, you could be granted a conditional hardship license. What that means it that you are able to operate a vehicle which is equipped with an ignition interlock device for a 12 hour period. For example, Bob works at a factory from 6am to 4pm, his conditional hardship license would be valid from 5am- 5pm. He would only be allowed to drive to and from work.

If you are required to drive a company vehicle as part of your job, what do you do?

                When not only getting to and from work is a problem but once you get to work you have to drive a company vehicle, not having a license could cost you your job. The court may allow you to operate a company vehicle without having to get an ignition interlock device installed in that work vehicle.

Let one of our trial attorneys, experienced in DUI, DWI, Refusals, and RI Traffic Tribunal matters, help you get back in your car after an arrest!

About the Author

Lauren V. Iannelli

Lauren V. Iannelli is an accomplished trial attorney coming from the RI Department of Attorney General after spending almost 6 years as a Special Assistant Attorney General. Lauren has an overwhelming amount of experience with drunk driving cases, and has presented six continuing legal education ...


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