Thursday, October 27, 2016

Ithaca DWI Lawyer: What Happens to a Montana Driver's License with a New York DWI?

If You're from Montana
you're practically Canadian
The wonderful thing about Ithaca, NY is that we have people visiting from all around the country and the world. Over the past eleven years we have represented and defended people for New York State DWI from dozens of countries and states.

Job Number One: Discover Implications with Any Out-of-State License with a New York DWI

Any New York lawyer must first discover the implications "license" wise, aka administratively with their client's DWI/DWAI/Aggravated DWI charge. Driving privileges in most states are taken as a constitutional right even though legally it is a privilege. You have to contact DUI/DWI/OUI lawyers from that state/jurisdiction to find out what happens with a out of state drunk/drug driving charge.

States like Pennsylvania currently do nothing with their citizens out of state drunk driving charges. States like New Jersey impose thousands in fines and classes.

What Does Montana Do to Driving Privileges with an Out of State (New York) DWI?

Big sky country is Montana. I have been to Wyoming a number of times but never Montana. The state of Montana is interesting for a number of reasons. First, Montana considers every charge, offense, or ticket a misdemeanor (a crime). So even speeding in Montana is classified as a misdemeanor. On balance the first THREE DUIs in Montana are misdemeanors. It isn't till the Fourth DUI that it is a Felony level offense.

In New York a second DWI in ten years is a Felony. Any out of state DWI/OUI/DWAI/Aggravated DWI needs to be substantially similar to a Montana DUI (most are) to then cause license issues in Montana.

Montana will suspend their Montana driving privileges for six months. They can apply for what Montana called a probationary driver's license. This is similar to our conditional driver's license for work, school, medical, and in Montana church. States like VA see church (religious) services as vital to a person's life as school and work. Unfortunately, the great State of New York doesn't see it that way.

Montana Requires That the New York DWI Judge Give a Letter of Recommendation for Driving Privileges

Montana requires that the sentencing judge (from whatever state) give a letter of recommendation stating that they approve of the Montana MVD awarding these probationary driving privileges. I spoke to the Montana MVD (motor Vehicle Division) kinda like our DMV on this, and local DUI lawyers to verify.

Probationary Driving Privileges are for Essential Purposes but have a wide definition:

This means that you may only drive to and from your residence and:
  1. Your regular place of employment, or in search of employment, by the most direct route from your residence and in a period of time no greater than is reasonable under existing traffic conditions, and during work hours at the specific direction of your employer for purposes of carrying out assigned job-related duties.
  2. A school or educational institution in which you are currently enrolled; however, travel must be limited to immediately before and after regular school hours. Travel must be by the most direct route from your residence and in a period of time no greater than is reasonable under existing traffic conditions. Driving to or from extracurricular activities is not allowed.
  3. A location, business, or establishment for purposes related to maintenance of the household in a period of time no greater than is reasonable under existing traffic conditions.
  4. A chemical dependency assessment, education course, or treatment program, as required. 

Montana allows a search for employment, New York does not. Montana allows for maintenance of household, New York does not. I am assuming this means food, supplies, and other life essentials. I would imagine being stuck out in parts of Montana are way more desolate than our farm lands.

Montana also requires a $200 license reinstatement fee once the suspension time period is over.

Montana also requires a weekend 12 hour prime for life program. New York State uses the prime for life program within our seven week, 16 hour Impaired Driver Program.

Montana when and if it discovers an out of state DWI will generally require three things, called ACT.

The purpose of ACT is to reinforce the consequences of DUI conviction and interrupt the cycle of driving impaired.

A= Assessment  This is a drug/alcohol evaluation to see if someone has a diagnosis where treatment for a problem is appropriate and necessary.

C= Course  This is the above mentioned prime for life course.

T= Treatment If treatment is recommended then it must be followed up on and completed.

ACT is very much like our IDP (Impaired Driver Program) in it's goals and purpose. Job one is eliminate recidivism.

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