Top Michigan License Restoration Attorney
If you have a revoked license for multiple drunk driving offenses contact us at Law Offices of Barton Morris for the best chance to get it back. Barton Morris and his legal team are highly experienced in conducting the Driver License Appeal Division Hearings and are very successful. Attorney Morris and his team not only prepare you for the hearing but also assists you with the preparation of letters and the substance abuse evaluation. The key to success is proper preparation and meticulous review of all evidence to be submitted. If everything goes as planned, your license privileges can be restored in as little as 10 weeks.
Understanding the Process
The reason most people are not successful in obtaining their license the first time is because they do not understand the process and what is expected. They believe that they can do it without an experienced attorney, then they have to wait a full year when they get denied. The ONLY way to ensure success is to retain an attorney who thoroughly knows the process which greatly increases your likelihood for victory.
Review and Determine Eligibility
The process begins by reviewing your driving record, which we can obtain immediately in the office, and determine your eligibility and conviction history. At this time, we will also engage in an extensive review of your personal history and provide a detailed overview of the process.
Substance Abuse Evaluation
You will be referred to the appropriate substance abuse evaluator for an evaluation and drug test. Once the evaluation is completed, we review it for accuracy and completeness with you prior to submission to the state. After submission it takes an average of six weeks to receive the hearing date. During that six weeks we assist the client in development and preparation and review of the required three to four letters from close friends and family documenting sobriety.
Prior to the hearing we meticulously prepare the client with a mock hearing where we review all anticipated questions and ensure the client knows exactly what to expect. This includes questions that are particular to each of the hearing officers all of whom we are very familiar with and know what they individually are looking for.
During the hearing we will conduct the examination and presentation of the evidence. We also handle any follow up investigations or evidence submission.
Next Steps After Approval
After your license is approved, if a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device is required, we will assist you in procuring this device at the best cost available.
93% Success Rate in 2016
If you’ve recently been denied your license, call the Law Offices of Barton Morris as soon as possible. Attorney Morris and his experienced legal team has a high probability to win this case on appeal or at least get you an earlier hearing date.
Commonly Asked Questions
If you want to win, you should have a lawyer, and not just any lawyer but one who specializes in driver license restorations. This is a legal proceeding in a highly specialized area of law. It’s not enough to be sober. You have to convince the Secretary of State Hearing Officer that you are sober and they expect you to prove it the way they want it proven. The requirements are very strict and particular. Every “i” must be dotted and every “t” must be crossed.
Any mistake or inconsistency can be held against you and can be construed as dishonesty. If you lose the hearing, you have to wait a year until you can re-apply. Your strongest chance to win is with the help of an experienced attorney.
“I can’t get my license back because I don’t go to AA” is probably the biggest mistaken belief I hear from potential clients. A person seeking restoration of a driver license has to prove that their substance use problem, if any, is under control and likely to remain under control. In other words, a petitioner has to show that he or she has stopped drinking and will continue to remain sober for the foreseeable future.
Many factors contribute to a favorable prognosis for continued sobriety; length of sobriety, family support, internal and external motivators, religious/spiritual support, treatment/counseling, and yes, AA. Whatever helped you get sober and stay sober is what you ought to continue doing. If that was AA, then AA should be continued. However, the vast majority of my clients do not go to AA and are still successful at getting driving privileges restored.
With that said, it should be noted that the Secretary of State seems to greatly prefer it when a petitioner is currently attending. It is believed that relapse is less likely when a person is currently attending a recognized recovery program. I encourage anyone considering AA to go. But a word of caution: don’t claim to attend unless you really are. The Secretary of State Hearing Officers will ask questions about AA to find out who is really going and who is faking.
The vast majority of our clients get their driving privileges restored on the first try. I believe we have such a high success rate due to a number of factors. One factor is our meticulous attention to detail. The license requirements are strict and particular and any mistakes or inconsistencies will be held against the petitioner.
The community letters of support must contain very specific, detailed information about petitioner’s abstinence from alcohol or drugs and the preceding past use. Likewise, the Substance Use Evaluation must include all of petitioner’s past arrests and convictions for any substance related offense, past attempts at sobriety, treatment history, support group history, history of mental illness and history of prescription drug use. Petitioner’s affidavit must also include all of that information. If anything is left out, or inconsistent with any other information, the appeal is subject to denial. We carefully review each document for accuracy and sufficiency and suggest changes when needed, which leads to another reason we have such a high success rate: the time we dedicate to each case.
We get to know the clients and how they got where they are today. We review the Substance Use Evaluation, letters and petitioner’s affidavit for accuracy. We meet with the clients prior to the hearing so that they are prepared for the questions they will be asked at the hearing. We are with the clients at the hearing to ensure all documents are properly received and to assist the client’s with their testimony.
A final factor contributing to our high success rate is our determination to succeed. We are proud of our success rate and want to continue promoting it. More importantly, we receive tremendous joy and satisfaction in helping our clients succeed. Most of the time, this is the last step to finally laying their past to rest!
A Substance Use Evaluation is required for anyone seeking to restore driving privileges that were lost as a result of driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. A good evaluation is important because it is the most scientific and objective part of the case.
One part of the evaluation is that the licensed therapist administers a test (questionnaire) and the tests results give a diagnosis for substance use, abuse or dependency. The therapist also gathers factual information about the petitioner including past arrests and convictions related to substance use, treatment history, support group history, abstinence history and any other information pertinent to the person’s sobriety. The therapist also examines the results of a 10-panel drug test.
The therapist uses all of this information to come up with a prognosis for continued sobriety, the options being: “poor,” “guarded,” “fair,” “good,” or excellent.” To get a license back, the prognosis must be “good” or “excellent.”
The Secretary of State requires 3-6 letters from friends, family, co-workers or neighbors to corroborate a petitioner’s sobriety. The letters should state the person’s relationship to the petitioner and how long the person has known the petitioner. The letter should also include how often the person sees the petitioner and under what circumstances.
The letter should include the date that the petitioner last consumed alcohol and/or drugs and should specify how the person knows that the petitioner is sober. A good letter will describe the changes in petitioner since getting sober. The letters should be from a cross-section of people, such as some friends, some family and some co-workers. The people in the best position to attest to petitioner’s sobriety are those around most frequently which tend to be a spouse/roommate, neighbors, co-workers and close friends. If petitioner has a sponsor or someone who provides transportation to AA, that person also should write a letter.
Some questions to consider when writing the letter are, “how long has petitioner been sober, how do you know this, does petitioner go to bars or clubs, does petitioner socialize with drinkers or does petitioner tend to hang out with other sober people, what hobbies does petitioner enjoy and is alcohol involved, does petitioner attend a 12-step program like AA, a religious institution like church, counseling or therapy?”
Finally, the letters must be signed, dated and notarized. They should be current and must include an address and phone number.
- To visit the State of Michigan’s website regarding license restoration click here.
- To get the forms necessary for submission to the state. Call 248-541-2600 with any questions.