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DMV Negligent Operator Hearing in San Francisco, Another Victory

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Case History:  California Drivers Advocates was engaged to defend a client whose driver license was in jeopardy of being suspended because the Department of Motor Vehicles had identified him as a Negligent Operator. Between January and August 2015, our client had received several citations for moving violations in and around San Francisco.

Because our client had accumulated a significant number of points under the Negligent Operator Treatment System, the DMV suspected he may be a careless or negligent operator and was seeking to take him off the road.

Because our client’s employment was directly tied to his ability to operate a motor vehicle, his financial future was on the line. In fact, his employer notified him that the loss of his driver license would mean the loss of his job……….. Period!

 DMV’s Position:  The California DMV’s position was crystal clear. The department is empowered to be vigilant in the monitoring of any person’s driving record to identify patterns of behavior which may indicate they are not able to safely operate a motor vehicle. Using an elaborate computer data base, the Negligent Operator Treatment System (NOTS) will assign a “point” to a person’s driving record each time they receive a citation for a moving violation; or are involved in an “at fault” traffic collision.

California Vehicle Code section 12810.5 establishes the maximum allowable NOTS point accumulation within specified periods of time. If a driver’s NOTS point count exceeds the maximum, he or she will be labeled a Negligent Operator by the NOTS computer system and the department will act to suspend that person’s driver license.

Our Defense:  When the client retained us, we immediately went to work to schedule his Negligent Operator Hearing and to stop the immediate suspension of his driver license. This permitted the client to continue driving during the next 45 days while we prepared to fight his case. His employer honored his temporary driving privilege so he could remain employed.

Early in our investigation, we learned that our client’s driving history had been remarkably clean for years. We learned that as a result of a promotion within his company, his responsibilities had doubled and his work related driving had increased exponentially. The increase in miles driven and sense of constantly “being late” had caused our client to suffer numerous moving violations in a short period of time.

Our defense began with a detailed interview of the client to examine each citation received and what the he could do change his driving habits. Our client purchased a “Daytimer” time management system and attended an on-line driving course to refresh his awareness of the rules of the road. Most importantly, we completely prepared our client for testimony before the DMV hearing officer.

After weeks of preparation, we presented our defense before the California Department of Motor Vehicles, Driver Safety Office in San Francisco.

At the hearing, we introduced items of affirmative evidence to demonstrate what had caused our client to be named a Negligent Operator. Our client testified with great credibility and accepted full responsibility for his actions. We mapped out a plan that demonstrated our client was committed to modifying his driving habits and how he intended to do so.

At the conclusion of the Negligent Operator Hearing, the hearing officer took the matter under submission. One week later, we received official notice that the hearing officer had terminated the planned suspension of our client’s driver license and had placed him on driving probation. Essentially, this allowed our client full driving privileges, without restriction. The only caveat was that he drive for one-year without receiving another moving violation.


We were able to save our client’s driver license and thus he is still employed.

Call CDA Today. Let us put you on the road to victory!

The DMV Defense Experts at California Drivers Advocates include former police officers, DMV Hearing Officers, Investigators and Scientists. Our training, our experience and our reputation provide any driver, especially commercial drivers, the best opportunity to win their Administrative Hearing. Whatever legal or scientific defense your case requires, CDA is ready to fight for you.

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