What causes the DMV to identify me as a Negligent Operator? Through an act of law, the California Legislature has empowered the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) with the broad power to ensure the safety of all California drivers. Through a policy of constant oversight, the DMV monitors the driving history of all California drivers to ensure that they play by the rules. If the DMV concludes that any driver has committed an act or a series of acts that demonstrate a disregard for public safety, the department will work quickly to remove that person’s privilege to operate motor vehicles in our state.
A person whose driving record indicates they do not practice safe driving habits may be labeled as a Negligent Operator and, as a consequence, may have their driving privilege restricted, suspended, revoked, or placed in a status of driving probation. Some of the most common reasons for the DMV to label a person as a Negligent Operator are:
- An accumulation of too many citations for moving violations in a specified period of time.
- An accumulation of too many “at fault” traffic collisions in a specified period of time.
- Involvement in any criminal act where driving is an element of the crime.
- Involvement in an act of highway violence more commonly referred to as “road rage.”
- Involvement in a traffic accident where the driver caused or contributed to the serious injury of another person.
- Involvement in a traffic accident where the driver caused or contributed to the death of another person.
Any person whose driving history, habits or mannerism suggest carelessness or disregard for others may be labeled as a Negligent Operator.
What does the DMV do to my license for Negligent Operation? The DMV’s reaction to a determination of Negligent Operation will be predicated upon the seriousness of the allegation. For example, the DMV may not be as aggressive with a person who accumulates too many traffic citations as with the person who has been involved in an act or “Road Rage.” It will depend upon the severity of the allegation.
Normally the affected driver will learn they have a DMV problem when they go to their mailbox and find a letter entitled, “Order of Suspension/Revocation” that tells them the DMV has already begun the process of suspending the driver license because they are a Negligent Operator. The letter will also advise the driver of what has prompted this action, such as too many points or a fatal traffic accident. Finally, the letter will offer the driver the opportunity to fight the suspension by scheduling a Negligent Operator Hearing. If no hearing is requested, the suspension or revocation of the driver license will be imposed without further notice. In most instances, the DMV only provides the driver a short window of opportunity (normally 10 to 14 days) to request a hearing. If no request is made, the driver will forfeit his right to a hearing and then suspension/revocation will be imposed.
Depending on the allegation that caused the DMV to label you as a Negligent Operator, your driver license may be suspended for 6 months to one year. If the allegation involves a fatal traffic collision or highway violence, the DMV has the option to revoke your driver license for an indeterminate period of time.
How do I defend myself against an allegation of being a Negligent Operator? First of all, understand that being labeled a Negligent Operator does not mean you are a bad person. It is not a criminal allegation and you cannot be put in jail for such a thing. This is an administrative sanction taken against your driving privilege. Even though the DMV will presume its information to be accurate and assume you must be punished for bad driving, these things CAN BE WON! Don’t allow the DMV to steal your driver license without a fight.
You should pick up the telephone and immediately telephone the DMV Defense Experts at California Drivers Advocates (CDA). We have been fighting and winning Negligent Operator hearings for many years and we may be able to win yours as well.
Quality DMV defense begins with a simple telephone call to our office. Once we are retained, we will step into the driver’s seat and begin guiding you toward the restoration of your driving privilege. Our work will include the immediate scheduling of your hearing and the request for a “Stay of Suspension/Revocation” so you may continue driving while we process your case. In most instances, a Negligent Operator Hearing can be conducted within 30 days, but if your case takes longer, you should be permitted to continue driving until a decision is made.
We will investigate the allegation against you and collect our own evidence. We will prepare you for testimony and will prepare our objections and legal arguments. When we enter the Negligent Operator Hearing we are completely prepared to do battle with the DMV and to beat them at their own game. If your driving privilege is important, don’t leave anything to chance. Put the best people on the playing field to win your hearing.
Call CDA today. We can make a difference. Learn more about our DMV Defense for Negligent Operator Hearings.