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Is The Driver’s License Reinstatement Process The Same In Wisconsin?


The driver’s license reinstatement process is not as bad in Wisconsin. Wisconsin has a whole different system. In Wisconsin, and every other state that I am aware of, with a DUI you get a conviction and you get a revocation right away. If it’s your first time, they treat you kind of the same as Illinois but they call it different things. You get a revocation with your first DUI conviction but they will give you what is called an occupational permit, which is the same thing as a hardship permit that you get directly from the Department of Motor Vehicles. They have the similar protocol in what you have to do but when you get revoked in Wisconsin for a first DUI, they still permit you to drive to and from work and to and from school to pick up the kids and everything else you need.

In that way, the revocation is much easier because once that’s over, you don’t need a full formal reinstatement hearing. They understand that it was just your first conviction. After your second conviction and you are revoked, obviously they are going to look at it a little bit differently. There is still not a guarantee that after the first one, you are going to get reinstated right away but there is much less to go through to get it back. If you’ve gotten your first revocation in Wisconsin and you have a hardship permit or what they call an occupational permit and you successfully complete that driving period without any violations or anything else then you are in good stead to get upgraded back to a full license.

In Illinois, when you try to get your license back you usually do it as a gradual process. Just because you have a reinstatement hearing, it doesn’t mean that you are going to get your full license back immediately. Usually they give you a hardship permit or whatever they want to call it and they put the breath interlock device in your car. They will make sure you are on that for so many months without any violations whatsoever. If everything is good, then in their discussion they will usually go ahead and give you the full license, but it’s never given back right off the bat. You don’t just get into the program, go with an attorney and you get your full license back. They will always make you go through the breath device in your car first.

How Long Should Someone Wait After A DUI Conviction Before Applying For Reinstatement?

Someone should wait six months in Illinois after a DUI conviction before applying for reinstatement. You can apply right away in Wisconsin because you qualify right away and they have the occupational permit. In Illinois, it’s different because when they see a conviction, they are treating it like it’s a second DUI. They have supervision for the person. The difference between Illinois and Wisconsin residents is that in Illinois, if you are a driver and you go two miles over the border and you get a DUI in Wisconsin, then they will send that conviction down to Illinois. They will say it’s your first DUI and we will just give you a conviction like anyone else. You will get a hardship permit and you are good to drive but the Catch 22 in that is Illinois will receive notice of a conviction from out of state. It doesn’t matter if it’s your first DUI. They will say we don’t care; if you got a conviction on your first DUI then we are going to revoke you for an entire year with no hardship permit, no occupational permit and nothing. It’s not automatic in Illinois that you get a supervision on your first DUI; 99 percent of the people are going to get it. If you had a bad accident or something where the judge thought that you were completely reckless and he decides not to give you court supervision then you are in trouble. You have to go through the whole thing just like anyone else and it will be a full year without reinstatement. You have to be very careful if you live bordering on another state if you are an Illinois driver.

How Can Someone Request a Formal Hearing For Reinstatement Of Their Driver’s License?

You have to file some paperwork to request a formal hearing for reinstatement of your driver’s license. You send it in and they send it back to you in writing. You can’t just call up and say I want to get my license back. They are going to say file the paperwork at the DMV or mail it to us and then we will schedule you with a date to come down for an interview.

Does Someone Have To Attend Their Reinstatement Hearing In Person?

You have to attend your reinstatement hearing in person. They are going to completely interview you and it’s probably going to be half an hour of questions. You better be ready for those questions. You miss one or two of the questions and give the wrong answer and they are going to say come back in six months with a fresh letter from your treatment provider saying that you’ve been a good person and we’ll try again. Until you get everything done the way they want it done, they are not going to give you anything and they are very strict about it.

For more information on Driver’s License Reinstatement In Wisconsin, a free initial consultation is your best next step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling (847) 244-4636 today.

Barry Boches, Esq.

Get your questions answered - call me for your free phone consultation (847) 244-4636.

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