Can I drive after I've been charged with DWI?

   The answer to this question is usually yes. The first stage of "limited" driving privilege is available 10 days after you are revoked for dwi charges. The civil revocation lasts 30 days, but the pre-trial privilege is available 10 days after the revocation. This privilege will expire after the 30 day revocation is up, and you'll need to restore your full license so that you can drive as usual until trial. If you plead guilty, your license will be revoked again, and depending on your sentencing level, you'll be eligible for a limited driving privilege that lasts the entire revocation period. 

   Each time you petition for a limited driving privilege, you must gather appropriate supporting documentation, and present the paperwork to an assistant DA and have the paperwork reviewed and signed by a judge. Paper work needed includes, substance abuse assessment outcome, a DL-123 form from your insurer, and usually the judge likes to see your driving record. You will also need supporting documentation, if needed, to go outside the normal 6a-8p M-F school/work driving schedule. There is also a $100 fee that must be paid to the clerk of courts for each privilege granted. I get a surprisingly high number of calls trying to figure out how to do this. The process can be daunting for a non-lawyer, and I would highly recommend the individual seek legal counsel during this process.

   Some exceptions include: blowing a .15 or higher. In these cases, you'll have to wait 45 days to restore your license pre-trial. There is no pre-trial driving privilege here. If you blow .15 or higher, you will also have the added cost requirement of installing an ignition interlock system (blow and go) so that you can qualify for the post trial driving privilege.

   Other exceptions where driving privilege is not available would be falling in the aggravated sentencing ranges of A1, 1, or 2. In these situations, no driving privileges are available after sentencing. However, you can drive on a pre-trial  privilege, or a restored post-30-day-revocation license leading up to the sentencing. 

   There are other more rare exceptions such as multiple DWI charges pending that will disqualify your limited driving privilege. Contact an Asheville DWI attorney today and inquire about what options you have available.