Administrative Hearing - Suspension
The purpose of an administrative hearing is to contest the department's suspension of your driving privilege. Laws regarding the State's mandatory insurance and financial responsibility laws can be found in Alaska Statutes 28.20 and Alaska Statutes 28.22. Requesting a hearing delays the suspension of your driving privileges pending the decision of the hearing officer. Your hearing must address specific reasons (issues) regarding the suspension of your driving privilege. The hearing officer cannot overturn the department's suspension because you need your license to drive to work, school, or need it for any other purpose. The hearing officer can only consider the following issues during the hearing:
Non-Compliance with the Mandatory Insurance Laws
- Whether you were driving a vehicle subject to registration that was involved, in any manner, in a collision which resulted in bodily injury or death of any person, or damage to the property of a person in excess of $501.00; and
- Whether you had motor vehicle liability insurance or a certificate of self-insurance in effect at the time of the collision as required by the mandatory insurance law.
Whether or not the collision was your fault is NOT a relevant issue for a mandatory insurance hearing and the hearing office cannot consider it.
Non-Compliance with the Financial Responsibility Laws
In addition to the above issues, the financial responsibility hearing also includes two other issues:
- Whether the exceptions to the financial responsibility law listed under AS 28.20.060 apply to you; and
- Whether there is a reasonable possibility that a judgment for money damages will be rendered against you in a court of law.
Alaska's requirements for driving privilege reinstatement include the payment of fees and proof of financial responsibility for the future (also know by form number - SR-22). Reinstatement is required by law. The hearing officer has no authority to decide that the reinstatement requirements should not apply to you.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What happens at a Hearing?
A hearing officer will explain the hearing process, review the information in the state file, and ask if you have any questions. A hearing officer will then swear in any witness(es) and take testimony. This is your opportunity to present your side of the story. A hearing officer may ask questions. After reviewing all the evidence, the hearing officer will close the hearing. The hearing officer will make a decision after the hearing and documentation will be mailed to you and, if applicable, your attorney. The hearing officer will apply a preponderance of evidence standard. If the hearing officer decides in your favor, the revocation or cancellation will not take effect. If the hearing officer decides against you, the revocation or cancellation will go into effect for the minimum period of time based on your driving record.
- How will I know when the hearing is scheduled?
You will receive a notice of the hearing that lists the date and time of the hearing. On the reverse side of the hearing notice is a “notice of policy.” This policy provides you with information concerning evidence, subpoenas, records, and continuances. Please read this form. For some hearings, the bottom of your hearing notice contains a “temporary license.” That temporary license portion can be torn off and carried as your temporary driver’s license. If “no temporary license” is issued to you, you cannot drive. If you have questions about your temporary license, you should contact Anchorage Driver Services.
- What if I change my mind about a hearing?
If you ask for a hearing and later decide you don’t want it, you can withdraw your request. If you decide to withdraw your request, please notify Anchorage Driver Services, in writing, as soon as possible. Once your written request to cancel the hearing is received, your temporary license is canceled and the revocation or cancellation of your license begins. If you are convicted in court prior to the hearing date, the court must revoke your privilege to drive. You must also surrender the temporary license to the judge. If following a conviction, you no longer want to contest the department’s revocation, you should notify Anchorage Driver Services, in writing, of your intention to withdraw your hearing request.
- What if I don’t show up for my hearing?
If you request a hearing and fail to respond or attend the hearing, your right to a hearing is waived and the revocation or cancellation will go into effect.
- Do I need a lawyer?
You have the right to have a lawyer, or any person of your choice, help you with the hearing. Not all cases require legal assistance. If your case is complicated you may need a lawyer. If you are going to hire a lawyer, don’t wait until the hearing is scheduled. Hire a lawyer right away. Your lawyer will need time to prepare your case. If you hire a lawyer, let the hearing office know immediately so that a notice of the hearing can be sent to your lawyer.
- What if I disagree with the hearing decision?
If you disagree with the hearing officer’s decision, you can appeal the decision to the Superior Court.
- Tips that may help you in the hearing
- Be prepared.
- Write down the points you want to cover in your testimony.
- Gather your written evidence together and mail copies to the hearing office to arrive at least 10 days before the hearing.
- Talk to your witness(es) as soon as possible.
- During the hearing, don’t try to testify until it’s your turn.
- Don’t interrupt those who are testifying.
- When you testify, tell the truth. Don’t guess if you’re not sure.
- Try not to repeat yourself.
- Make sure the evidence you present concerns the issues.
- Don’t argue or get angry during the hearing; you will do a much better job of presenting your case if you stay calm.
- Participate in the hearing.
- Exercise your rights. It is your chance to tell your side of the story.
- What if all I really want is a “limited license” for work purposes?
If you are not contesting the revocation, there is no need to request a hearing. You may apply for a limited license for work purposes only by completing the requirements on the application form and paying the non-refundable processing fee of $100.
1st offense of DUI and 2nd or more offenses of the under 21 violation of driving after drinking. Limited licenses can only be issued for the last 60 days of a revocation.
Multiple offenders (misdemeanors only, no felony drunk driving)
Limited licenses are available after the first 90 days and you will be required to obtain an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) just prior to issuance of the limited license.
Limited license applications can be obtained online at Alaska.gov/dmv or at most DMV offices. Make sure you use the correct form. There are no limited licenses available for driving a commercial vehicle, cancellation of driving privileges or Refusal to submit to a chemical test.