Protecting Your Ohio Driver’s License After Your OVI Case
Dealing with the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles can be a nightmare. So, you will want to avoid problems before they rear their ugly heads. Don’t worry! You can make this as painless as possible by following these simple rules.
1. Make sure the BMV knows how to reach you. The burden is upon you to notify them of any address change. Courts will accept their statement that they sent you information at your last known address as valid even if you did not get it. You can apply for an address change on line here.
2. Make sure the court knows how to reach you. As with the BMV, the court will send valid notices to your last known address. Not keeping this information current can be disastrous. If your probation officer cannot reach you, he/she may issue a warrant for your arrest.
3. Follow the rules! If you are required to attend a weekend intervention program and/or sign up for treatment, please do so. Not attending a program and/or missing a schedule evaluation usually results in a letter being sent to the court. The court, in turn, schedules a hearing on why you have disobeyed. The hard work of your attorney can be undone. It is also important to realize that most weekend intervention programs run on a tight schedule. They can and will lock you out of the program for being late.
4. Follow all the rules! It is much easier for your attorney to obtain a new driving privilege order than to defend you for driving under suspension. Please drive only on valid privileges. If your job and/or hours change, make sure the changes are reflected on your order. You should also only drive at the time and to the location provided for in your order.
5. Show proof of insurance to everyone, all the time, every where…at least twice. The police officer can mark proof of insurance. Your attorney can show proof of insurance prior to the disposition of your case. The judge can mark proof of insurance on the file and the proof can be maintained in the file. However, the BMV should be sent a separate notice of proof at least two weeks prior to filing for reinstatement.
6. Pay your reinstatement fee. At least two weeks prior to the end of your suspension arrive at the BMV with your proof of insurance and your reinstatement fee. I have abandoned giving the advice to mail it in. Suck it up and go to the BMV in person. You are likely to have proof that day and all issues will be solved. You are not valid until the reinstatement fee is paid.
7. Pay your court fees and costs on time. Failure to do so may result in jail time, driving suspensions and/or monetary fines. The failure to pay fines may also impact your probation.
8. Renew your license on time even if you are under suspension. Many times people will avoid paying the renewal during a suspension. This is not a good idea. To be valid at the end of your suspension, you must have a valid license. Unwittingly, you may put yourself in the awful position of having to re-test.
9. If you need identification during a DUI case, please contact the BMV for a “temporary” i.d. Do not under any circumstances get a state issued identification because this will cancel your license and you will be required to re-test.