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Indiana OWI / DUI License Suspensions



IMPLIED CONSENT – Any person who operates a vehicle in the state of Indiana impliedly consents to submit to chemical test or tests as a condition of operating a vehicle in Indiana. A police officer with probable cause to believe a person has committed an OWI offense will offer the person the opportunity to submit to a chemical test. More than one chemical test may be offered. Which chemical test or tests will be given is in the discretion of the officer. The police are not required to offer chemical testing to persons who are unconscious.

REFUSAL – If a person refuses to submit to a chemical test, the arresting officer is required to inform the person that refusal will result in the suspension of the person’s driving privileges and that the refusal to submit to chemical testing is admissible into evidence. If, after having been advised of the consequences of a refusal, the person still refuses chemical testing, the officer will confiscate the person’s driver’s license and issue them a receipt that is valid until a hearing has been conducted. The officer will submit a probable cause affidavit to the prosecuting attorney of the county in which the alleged offense occurred and send a copy of the affidavit to the bureau of motor vehicles.

The Administrative License Suspension Review Process in Indiana OWI Cases

A person whose driving privileges have been suspended for a chemical test failure or refusal is entitled to a prompt judicial hearing to contest the suspension. The person may file a petition with the court for a hearing. The hearing will be limited to the following issues: (1) whether the arresting law enforcement officer had probable cause to believe that the person was OWI; and (2) whether the person refused to submit to a chemical test offered by a law enforcement officer. The petitioner has the burden of proof by a preponderance of the evidence. If the court finds that there was no probable cause that an OWI offense was committed, or that the person did not refuse to submit to a chemical test, then the court will order the bureau to reinstate the person’s driving privileges. The court’s final judgement may be appealed in the manner of civil actions by either party. The attorney general will represent the state on appeal.

Whenever a judicial officer has determined that there was probable cause to believe that a person has committed an OWI, the clerk of the court will forward a copy of a probable cause affidavit and a bureau certificate to the bureau. The probable cause affidavit must set forth the grounds for the arresting officer’s belief that there was probable cause that the arrested person was operating a vehicle or a motorboat while under the influence. It must also state that the person was arrested for an OWI violation and whether the person refused to submit to a chemical test when offered; or submitted to a chemical test and “failed.”

If a court recommends suspension of the defendant’s driving privileges, then the bureau must suspend the driving privileges of the person for the period set by the court. The defendant will be required to surrender all licenses, permits, or receipts that have been issued to him/her to the court. The court will forward the licenses, permits, or receipts to the bureau along with the court’s judgement. If the court finds the suspension was invalid, then the bureau must remove any record of the ignition interlock device requirement or suspension from the bureau’s record keeping system and reinstate the person’s driving privileges without cost.

If it is determined that there was probable cause to believe that a person committed an OWI offense, then at the initial hearing of the matter the court will recommend immediate suspension of the person’s driving privileges to take effect on the date the order is entered. The court will order the person to surrender all driver’s licenses, permits, and receipts and have the clerk forward the information to the bureau. As an alternative to a license suspension, the court may issue an order recommending that the person be prohibited from operating a motor vehicle unless the motor vehicle is equipped with a functioning certified ignition interlock device until the bureau is notified by a court that the criminal charges against the person have been resolved.

If the court orders an ignition interlock device requirement, the bureau will mail a notice of the requirement that the person may not operate a vehicle unless it is equipped with a functioning ignition interlock device. The requirement will take effect 5 days after the date of the notice or on the date the court enters the order recommending the use of the ignition interlock device, whichever occurs first. Persons required to install an IID will be given the right to a judicial review.

A DUI defendant’s driving privileges will be reinstated if all of the charges against him/her have been dismissed and the prosecuting attorney states on the record that no charges will be refiled against the person. Likewise, if the court finds the allegations in a petition filed by a defendant are true, or if the person who submitted to chemical testing has been found not guilty of all charges by a court or by a jury, then the bureau will be given a court order to reinstate the defendant’s driving privileges. No reinstatement fee will be required.

INDIANA OWI ADMINISTRATIVE LICENSE PENALTIES

CHEMICAL TEST FAILURE – 180 day suspension, or until the case is disposed of by the Court, whichever occurs first.

FIRST OFFENSE CHEMICAL TEST REFUSAL – 1 year license suspension

REFUSAL WITH ONE PRIOR OWI CONVICTION – 2 year license suspension


IC 9-30-6-1
Chemical test for intoxication; implied consent
Sec. 1. A person who operates a vehicle impliedly consents to submit to the chemical test provisions of this chapter as a condition of operating a vehicle in Indiana.
As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.18.

IC 9-30-6-2
Probable cause; offer of test; alternative tests; requirement to submit
Sec. 2. (a) A law enforcement officer who has probable cause to believe that a person has committed an offense under this chapter, IC 9-30-5, or IC 9-30-9, or a violation under IC 9-30-15 shall offer the person the opportunity to submit to a chemical test.
(b) A law enforcement officer:
(1) is not required to offer a chemical test to an unconscious person; and
(2) may offer a person more than one (1) chemical test under this chapter.
(c) A test administered under this chapter must be administered within three (3) hours after the law enforcement officer had probable cause to believe the person committed an offense under IC 9-30-5 or a violation under IC 9-30-15.
(d) A person must submit to each chemical test offered by a law enforcement officer in order to comply with the implied consent provisions of this chapter.
As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.18. Amended by P.L.53-1994, SEC.7.

IC 9-30-6-3
Arrest; probable cause; evidence of intoxication; refusal to submit to test; admissibility
Sec. 3. (a) If a law enforcement officer has probable cause to believe that a person committed an offense under IC 9-30-5, the person may be arrested. However, if the chemical test results in prima facie evidence that the person is intoxicated, the person shall be arrested for an offense under this chapter, IC 9-30-5, or IC 9-30-9.
(b) At any proceeding under this chapter, IC 9-30-5, or IC 9-30-9, a person’s refusal to submit to a chemical test is admissible into evidence.
As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.18.

C 9-30-6-7
Refusal to submit to chemical tests or test results in prima facie evidence of intoxication; duties of arresting officer
Sec. 7. (a) If a person refuses to submit to a chemical test, the arresting officer shall inform the person that refusal will result in the suspension of the person’s driving privileges.
(b) If a person refuses to submit to a chemical test after having been advised that the refusal will result in the suspension of driving privileges or submits to a chemical test that results in prima facie evidence of intoxication, the arresting officer shall do the following:
(1) Obtain the person’s driver’s license or permit if the person is in possession of the document and issue a receipt valid until the initial hearing of the matter held under IC 35-33-7-1.
(2) Submit a probable cause affidavit to the prosecuting attorney of the county in which the alleged offense occurred.
(3) Send a copy of the probable cause affidavit submitted under subdivision (2) to the bureau.

C 9-30-6-10
Judicial hearing; petition; issues; findings; county prosecutor to represent state; burden of proof; appeal
Sec. 10. (a) A person against whom an ignition interlock device order has been issued under section 8.5 of this chapter or whose driving privileges have been suspended under section 9 of this chapter is entitled to a prompt judicial hearing. The person may file a petition that requests a hearing:
(1) in the court where the charges with respect to the person’s operation of a vehicle are pending; or
(2) if charges with respect to the person’s operation of a vehicle have not been filed, in any court of the county where the alleged offense or refusal occurred that has jurisdiction over crimes committed in violation of IC 9-30-5.
(b) The petition for review must:
(1) be in writing;
(2) be verified by the person seeking review; and
(3) allege specific facts that contradict the facts alleged in the probable cause affidavit.
(c) The hearing under this section shall be limited to the following issues:
(1) Whether the arresting law enforcement officer had probable cause to believe that the person was operating a vehicle in violation of IC 9-30-5.
(2) Whether the person refused to submit to a chemical test offered by a law enforcement officer.
(d) If the court finds:
(1) that there was no probable cause; or
(2) that the person’s driving privileges were suspended under section 9(b) of this chapter and that the person did not refuse to submit to a chemical test;
the court shall order the bureau to rescind the ignition interlock device requirement or reinstate the person’s driving privileges.
(e) The prosecuting attorney of the county in which a petition has been filed under this chapter shall represent the state on relation of the bureau with respect to the petition.
(f) The petitioner has the burden of proof by a preponderance of the evidence.
(g) The court’s order is a final judgment appealable in the manner of civil actions by either party. The attorney general shall represent the state on relation of the bureau with respect to the appeal.
As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.18. Amended by P.L.76-2004, SEC.13; P.L.2-2005, SEC.38.

IC 9-30-6-11
Reinstatement of driving privileges; rescission of ignition interlock device requirement; conditions; findings of fact
Sec. 11. (a) Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, IC 9-30-5, or IC 9-30-9, the court shall order the bureau to rescind an ignition interlock device requirement or reinstate the driving privileges of a person if:
(1) all of the charges under IC 9-30-5 have been dismissed and the prosecuting attorney states on the record that no charges will be refiled against the person;
(2) the court finds the allegations in a petition filed by a defendant under section 18 of this chapter are true; or
(3) the person:
(A) did not refuse to submit to a chemical test offered as a result of a law enforcement officer having probable cause to believe the person committed the offense charged; and
(B) has been found not guilty of all charges by a court or by a jury.
(b) The court’s order must contain findings of fact establishing that the requirements for reinstatement described in subsection (a) have been met.
(c) A person whose driving privileges are reinstated under this section is not required to pay a reinstatement fee.
As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.18. Amended by P.L.76-2004, SEC.14.

IC 9-30-6-12
Suspension of driving privileges recommended by court; compliance; limitation
Sec. 12. (a) If a court recommends suspension of the driving privileges under this chapter, IC 9-30-5, or IC 9-30-9:
(1) the bureau shall comply with the recommendation of suspension, and the driving privileges of the person remain

suspended for the period set by the court; and
(2) the person shall surrender to the court all licenses, permits, or receipts issued to the person, and the court shall immediately forward the licenses, permits, or receipts to the bureau with the abstract of conviction or judgment.
(b) During the three (3) years following the termination of the suspension the person’s driving privileges remain suspended until the person provides proof of financial responsibility in force under IC 9-25.
(c) If at any time during the three (3) years following the termination of the suspension imposed under subsection (a) a person who has provided proof of financial responsibility under IC 9-25 fails to maintain the proof, the bureau shall suspend the person’s driving privileges until the person again provides proof of financial responsibility under IC 9-25.
(d) An agency action under this section is not subject to IC 4-21.5.
As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.18.

IC 9-30-6-13
Reinstatement of driving privileges; rescission of ignition interlock device requirement; duties of bureau
Sec. 13. If a court orders the bureau to rescind an ignition interlock device requirement or reinstate a person’s driving privileges under this article, the bureau shall comply with the order. Unless the order for reinstatement is issued under section 11(2) of this chapter, the bureau shall also do the following:
(1) Remove any record of the ignition interlock device requirement or suspension from the bureau’s recordkeeping system.
(2) Reinstate the privileges without cost to the person.
As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.18. Amended by P.L.76-2004, SEC.15.

IC 9-30-6-13.5
Removal of suspension from record
Sec. 13.5. Whenever a case filed under IC 9-30-5 is terminated in favor of the defendant and the defendant’s driving privileges were suspended under section 9(c) of this chapter, the bureau shall remove any record of the suspension, including the reason for suspension, from the defendant’s official driving record.
As added by P.L.103-1991, SEC.3. Amended by P.L.2-2005, SEC.39.

IC 9-30-6-14
Certified copies of driving and court records as prima facie evidence
Sec. 14. In a proceeding under this article:
(1) a certified copy of a person’s driving record obtained from the bureau; or
(2) a certified copy of a court record concerning a previous conviction;
constitutes prima facie evidence that the person has a previous

conviction of operating while intoxicated.
As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.18.

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