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Shortening of the Waiting Period

When Shortening of the Waiting Period is a Possibility

The shortening of the waiting period is a possibility, if the court has sentenced you to a fine and a waiting period, mostly after an offence of drunk driving, the waiting period being the time you are blocked to receive a new driver's license. When considering this legal option, different variations are thinkable. For it makes a difference if you are before or after the trial, or how long the probation period has been set.

Before the Court Trial

First of all, you will want to check before the judicial hearing which options are important to you. With or without a lawyer you can fix your strategy accordingly. If an offence like drunk driving has happened, you will, in any case, receive a fine and a forced break without driver's license, but you can try to influence the relative weight of these penalties. If money is not a big issue, you can try to opt for a high fine but shorter waiting period. Should the driver's license be less urgent to you, you can go the opposite direction, and appeal for a minor fine and longer time without driver's license.

It is important to remind oneself that a short waiting period is of no avail if you have to present an MPU examination which itself necessitates time-dependent documents. You find relevant details on my pages about the individual MPU counseling as well as the about the alcohol abstinence proof and the drug abstinence proof. Let us stay with our example alcohol. If more than 1.6 per thousand has been measured, you will in any case get an MPU order, and you typically have to present proof of abstinence of at least half a year. Should you have reached more than 2 per thousand, the proof of a full year is asked for.

You should consider these periods of time in your legal tactics. You may well accept a waiting period which does not exceed the deadline which you later have to prove in the MPU. And stay with me on this website. I will tell you soon, how you can optimally use my counseling before the court trial.

Cases without Fixed Probation Periods

Let us now consider another variation, e.g. the one when the testing institute does not demand a probation period or at least is not entitled to do so. This typically is true cases of traffic regulation violations, i.e. when the driver's license is lost due to infringements (Ordnungswidrigkeiten) or points. But even in the case of legal offences (Straftaten) – with the exclusion of prison terms (where dependent on the gravity of the offense half a year or one year of legal reliability are necessary) – the expert will not be forced to ask for a probation period. Of course, experts appreciate it when clients who have violated the law allow for certain time of reflection, of amendment of unfortunate life circumstances of private or professional genesis, because they believe that changes in attitude need time, but clear, binding guidelines are missing. Even after a legal offence, a client who quickly gets a grip on his inappropriate behaviour, can approach an MPU.

For you, there are the following consequences. Should the court put you into the position of having to decide between a high fine and a long waiting period, you might aim towards keeping the last one as short as possible. But keep one thing in mind. If you have lost your license due to more than 8 points (and legal offences also raise you point account), your driver's license office will not hand out a new license to you before 6 months. This "range of penalty" you also have in front of the court. Should this passage not be relevant in your case, you might try to get a shorter waiting period. Do not miss to clarify this point via a talk with the person responsible for you in the driver's license office. For only if this office and the MPU institute are agreeing, will the option of a short waiting period or one - as we shall soon see - being forced at the court be relevant. And: do not make the mistake to mix up the court and the driver's license office. Relative to the legal resp. the file situation, both can renounce your driver's license. I think you got the message: Only, of both are agreeing, i.e. if the court reduces the waiting period and the driver's license office does not raise an own deadline, will the early issuing of the driver's license be possible.

After the Verdict

Let us turn to the last, most frequent variation. A verdict has been announced, and the waiting period is longer than the one you have to present at the MPU. We can instantly distinguish two developments. The first and favorable one sees you having collected in good time abstinence proofs, so now you are ready for the examination. In this case, a reduction of the waiting period should be worth the effort. Thus you should not disdain the "present". How can you best achieve that? Arrange an informal consultation to clarify your case. Treat yourself to a traffic psychological counseling and collect, if necessary, the abstinence evidence. Informally apply for a reduction of the waiting period, i.e. write a letter to the judge, where you ask him to consider your engaged rehabilitation. Should you have booked my counseling, I will of course help you to write such a letter. Further down, on this webpage, you will find additional instructions.

Should you, however, have missed the necessary evidence, and this would be the second, unfavorable development, then you can save yourself the effort. For why would you need a reduced waiting period, if you cannot pass the MPU? Check with your lawyer, if a traffic psychological counseling can help you to reduce the fine, and focus all of your energy towards your rehabilitation, i.e. the traffic psychological work and the passing of the MPU.

4. Summary

Just for the record: a shortening of the waiting period make sense, if neither your driver's license office nor the testing institute impose conditions which pass the deadline of the court verdict, and if you have colleced the evidence necessary for the MPU. The typical case would be an offence of drunk driving, since with a moderate per thousand value, the punishment of the judge should be higher than the abstinence period of half a year, asked for by the MPU expert, while with a high per thousand value, the judge might ban you for more than a year. In both cases, you should apply for a shortening of the waiting period, and a traffic psychological counseling can help you to do so.

Which Concrete Steps Do I Have to Take?

And thus you can optimally take advantage of the shortening of the waiting period:

1. Before the Court Hearing (Trial)

Should the trial not yet have taken place, which is the first of our above mentioned variants, then you should begin an traffic psychological counseling as soon as possible. Inform your lawyer, and later, in the hearing, hand the judge your participation certificate and try to gain an optimal penalty. For even in the first trial, the judge can reduce the verdict, if he realizes your will to rehabilitate and has evidence of concrete, positive changes. He would then practically write the shortening of the waiting period into the verdict. Instead of banning you for one year, he can remit one or two months; there even have been a few cases where the judge went further, recognizing the existential necessity of the driver's license. This is more probable, if you personally turn up at the court, if you leave a contrite and self-critical impression, and if you can present the judge indications of your improvement, like a traffic psychological counseling or medical abstinence evidence. You might as well go for a personal final speech, where you can show your rethinking, your "remorse". You will have this possibility in court, for before having to accept the verdict, you are allowed to personally express yourself. Check and optimize your statement with your lawyer of traffic psychologist.

You might also wait before presenting your participation certificate to the court, e.g. you might ask the judge a few months after the verdict in an informal letter to reduce the waiting period, but I am among those who believe that you should present the best possible instantly in the first hearing. If you react quickly, and present extenuating material, one can see that you are highly motivated to correct your mistakes. If you wait, this can be interpreted as hesitation, as a late reaction in face of the pressure exerted by the lawyer or threat of a verdict.

And this is, how you should correctly proceed: take as soon as possible an informative consultation, then complete the therapy, and submit the participation certificate in the first court hearing. Should there be no trial, e.g. should the issue been taken care of with an order of summary punishment (Strafbefehl), you might try a spectacular, much too seldom chosen variant. Contact the appropriate court. Find out which judge or prosecutor in charge of your case. Write him a personal letter and include a participation certificate of our counseling. Thus you preempt the usual procedure and positively set yourself apart from the multitude of cases.

2. After the Court Hearing (Trial)

Let us assume that you have already received an order of summary punishment, or a court sentence has been pronounced. In this case as well, go and visit instantly an informative consultation, to clarify your options. Collect, if necessary, the medical abstinence evidence, and complete a traffic psychological course (MPU counseling). About half a year before the end of the waiting period, write a letter to the judge who has treated your case. Tell him that you are very sorry about what has happened, and that are now more than eager to do everything to respect the traffic safety. Include the medical proof already at hand, and of course the certificate of participation of your MPU counseling. If you wish so, you can also tell the judge about your subjective improvements since the onset of your life changes. Finally ask him to appropriately take into account your rehabilitation efforts in form of a shortening of the waiting period.

The judge will usually react after a certain processing time, and he will normally grant a shortening of the waiting period. Because, when you have completed my course, you will received a detailed certificate of participation which summarizes our work. You have a document which should count at court.

How much Shortening of the Waiting Period is Realistic?

Let us finally answer the question you are interested in: how many months of shortening are achievable? My own experience and the feedback of colleagues has furnished that judges normally concede one month of shortening. This occurred when clients wrote one letter to the judge with no further contact. Rarely – as colleagues have told me – has a shortening of the waiting period been rejected, but this must be an exception. Sometimes, clients even had the courage to talk privately with the judge. They personally dropped the certificate, introduced themselves, gave a report of their own situation, their objectives and their insight. One client succeeded in gaining a second month, receiving the assent that with optimal conduct, an exceptional maximum of three months should be thinkable.

You recognize here, as elsewhere on my website, that your personal engagement is decisive. If you yourself care for your case, if you head towards a positive future, if you collect evidence, if you treat yourself to a traffic psychological counseling, and if you look for a personal contact to the court, you can gain the optimum. And what do you have to lose? If worst comes to worst, the judge will reject your appeal, i.e. the reduction. In the best case you win a month, maybe even more time and will thus drive again earlier. For if you have done everything correctly, you will enter the MPU in due time and you will have excellent chances to get a positive expertise.

Seize the opportunity of the shortening of the waiting period and get this "present". Call me, arrange an informative consultation and after talking to me respectively to your lawyer, chose the right strategy. Before or after the court hearing, the teaching can provide you with a valuable month, or it can help you to reduce the fine, if a minimal period of reliability has to be satisfied. In any case, you will profit from the counseling on the day of the examination, when you have to pass in front of the expert and want to be optimally prepared.

 

© 2017   Dr. M. Junker

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