Financial Responsibility Hearings

What is a Financial Responsibility Hearing?

Every person who owns or operates a motor vehicle in the State of California, is mandated to maintain appropriate liability insurance on that vehicle. This insures that any persons injured, or any property damaged, as a result of an automobile accident or incident can be compensated for that injury or damage. It is the goal of this law to make sure that victims of accidents are “made whole” to the extent possible.  Most Financial Responsibility Hearings occur after a driver has been involved in a reportable traffic accident and is found to be have been operating his or her vehicle without proper automobile insurance.

What Happens if I Don’t Participate in a Financial Responsibility Hearing?

The DMV presumes that their allegation against the driver is correct and warrants a suspension.  If a driver takes no action to defend themselves, the driver accepts the label of “Negligent Operator” and approves the license suspension by default.  Once a driver serves a period of suspension, he may be required to file an SR-22 with the DMV, causing a dramatic increase in automobile insurance rates. If that isn’t bad enough, one’s driving privilege and driving record are often a major factor in seeking or maintaining employment. Your ability to provide for your  family can be significantly impacted by a Negligent Operator suspension.   Being considered a Negligent Operator is costly.

How to Fight a Financial Responsibility Hearing?

Most often, a driver will receive a notice in the mail that the DMV intends to suspend their driver license for one-year, based upon a violation of the Financial Responsibility Laws. Once the driver has received this notice, they only have 10-days to act. If the driver wishes to prevent the suspension of his or her driving privilege, contact must be made with one of the Driver Safety Offices located near their home and this contact must occur within the first 10-calendar days following receipt of the notice. If the driver fails to contact the DMV within the required time frame, the driver is considered to have forfeit his or her right to a hearing and the suspension becomes automatic.

How We Help at Financial Responsibility Hearing? – If you receive a notice of suspension from the DMV, contact California Drivers Advocates immediately. The expert representatives at CDA will automatically intervene on your behalf. We will contact the DMV immediately to preserve your right to an administrative hearing and to ensure your driving privilege is extended until the hearing can be conducted. There is no cost to setting up the hearing and there is no harm caused by defending yourself. You cannot make the suspension period longer by defending yourself and losing. All you can do is make the situation better. Make a simple call and let CDA put you back on the road.

It is critical that you be represented by an Administrative Advocate or attorney to ensure that the Hearing Officer correctly reviews and considers all of the evidence.

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More about Financial Responsibility Hearings at the California DMV