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|Lesser Penalties in Colorado
This information is current
DO NOT LET THE INTERSTATE DRIVER LICENSE COMPACT KEEP YOU FROM GETTING A LICENSE
If you have been convicted of multiple DUIs in the past and your license is currently suspended, revoked or canceled - even a lifetime ban - you won't be able to get a driver's license in that state or any other state due to the Interstate Driver License Compact and the National Driver Register. The Compact is an agreement among its members to recognize each other's driver's license holds to prevent people from simply crossing state lines and getting a license. It basically says, "If you won't give them a license for any reason, we won't give them a license either."
Colorado has a special administrative rule (1 CCR 204-16 Interstate Driver's License Compact) that states briefly: In spite of a Compact hold, the Colorado DMV will issue you a license after a hearing if it is determined that you are safe to drive and at least a year has passed since you lost your license or last drove, regardless of what any other state's law says. A Hearing Officer applies Colorado law to each applicant's unique set of circumstances.
In practical terms, this means that you must qualify for a license under Colorado law, have proof of address and have not driven for at least a year. And you should also know that Colorado DOES NOT have a certain length of stay residency requirement, if you have a job or own or operate a business in Colorado. When we talk I'll give you more information about this. Also see more here
You have to start off with the Interstate Driver License Compact and the National Driver Register (NDR). The compact basically says, for the states that are members, "if you won't give them a license for any reason, we won't give them a license". The NDR keeps track of the holds.
So, if any compact state has a hold on your license, it keeps you from getting a license in all the other states which are members of the Compact: all states except GA, MA, WI. In fact, other states may not give you a license even if the hold is in these four states.
All traffic matters which caused you to lose your license are counted. There are also some non-traffic matters which may have caused it, too.
There is one exception to this. And that is Colorado.
You see, in spite of a compact hold, the Colorado DMV will issue you a license after a hearing if it is determined that you are safe to drive, at least a year has passed since you lost your license or last drove, applicable Colorado would law allow you to drive here and you are a Colorado resident ("Resident" means any person who owns or operates any business in this state or any person who has resided within this state continuously for a period of ninety days or has obtained gainful employment within this state, whichever shall occur first). This is regardless of what any other state's law says.
In practical terms this means that you must qualify for a license under Colorado law, have proof of address and have not driven for at least a year . And you should also know that Colorado DOES NOT have a certain length of stay residency requirement if you have a job or own or operate a business in Colorado. When we talk I'll give you more information about this. States that have tougher laws which we have successfully appealed include: New Jersey Pennsylvania Florida New York Oregon Washington Alaska Missouri Minnesota Michigan Massachusetts Utah Kansas Nebraska Indiana Illinois Iowa.
It's simple, really. All you need to do is answer a few questions (You may take a Colorado License Interview here, but please read the FAQs first), and we can tell you if you may qualify (But please understand, we cannot guarantee that you will get a Colorado license. We are not the ones who make that decision.).
Depending on your record, you may be
eligible for a Colorado license after one year of not driving. Here is the regulation that makes a license possible even
though another state has a hold on you on the NDR. If you have lost your license for
more than a year for impaired driving convictions and if a hearing officer finds
that you are safe to give a license, he or she would apply Colorado law and
order DMV to issue you a license. In most cases Colorado drivers only
lose their licenses for one or two months for impaired driving offenses. If your hold is by GA, MA, TN or WI,
you still will be denied, but you do not need to wait a year for these states.
You apply for a license here in Colorado. You most likely will need to pass the written test, so study the Colorado Driver Handbook first. Because of the hold from another state on the NDR, you will then be turned down. You must have proper identification when you apply including proof of your social security number (Niether social security cards nor birth certificates can be laminated.) and must tell the DMV clerk about the hold. Also you will need documentation of your address:
*EFFECTIVE April 4, 2011*
In order to be compliant with the Federal Real ID Act, ALL applicants must show two documents to prove their residential address. (A minor child may use the parent's address indicated on their license if it is correct.) Applicants may provide one of the documents listed below if it contains the applicant's current address:
After you retain us, we request a hearing on your behalf. IF YOU REPRESENT YOURSELF, PLEASE DO NOT CALL AFTER YOU FAIL. It will take a few weeks to get a hearing set up. At the hearing you may be asked to prove that you're a resident, showing, for example, the fact that you have a job, Colorado business, or your address and how long you have been there, etc. The hearing office will request information from the state with the hold, but sometimes does not get enough information to adjudicate your case. You should have current driving records from all states that have holds on you. You must also be found to be safe to put on the road. This is important when you have drunk driving convictions. You should bring any documentation of your alcohol classes, treatment and AA attendance that you have.
The hearing itself is not lengthy. The whole process usually only takes about a six weeks . . . but don't hold me to that.
If we're successful here, the hearing officer will order DMV to issue you a license in spite of any holds. You'll then have to apply for a Instruction Permit (which includes a written test). Once you pass the test and get your picture Instruction Permit, you may take your driving test at a commercial driving school (because it takes what seems like forever to get set up for a test with the State). The driving school will provide the car and get you tested. Once you pass the driving test and take proof to DMV, you will be issued a license. Interlock documentation, SR-22 and class enrollment are often required before you will be issued a perimit or license.
To determine whether or not you may qualify to get a Colorado driver's license even though yours is revoked or suspended in your another state, complete the Colorado License Interview here, but please read the FAQs first. We will respond promptly to tell you if you may qualify. We may request further information by email or text. Usually a only few simple questions will be necessary. Time limitations make lengthy discussions on the telephone impracticable at the initial stages due the volume of requests.