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An Overview Of The Step By Step Guide To Re-exam Process – (FFDL 27)

A Step by Step Guide for Drivers Who May Be Required to Appear for Reexamination
The California DMV Reexamination Process

The following is an overview of the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) guide for drivers who may be required to appear for a general reexamination to prove that they are still fit to drive a motor vehicle safely. Every case is considered individually, and as such this information covers only the general guidelines regarding reexamination.

How Does DMV Decide Who Needs Reexamination?

California law requires the DMV to probe and reexamine an individual’s ability to continue driving a motor vehicle safely whenever there is a report of physical or mental conditions that could impact driving abilities, or if specific entries appear on one’s driving record. DMV receives a vast amount of information from multiple sources. Some of the possible avenues for DMV to receive information on an individual are as follows:

Physicians and surgeons are legally required to report to DMV any conditions, diseases, or disorders that may present any potential loss of consciousness, awareness, or control. Alzheimer’s disease and other conditions that could affect competency behind the wheel would require a physician to report, as well as any other conditions which the physician has concern regarding how it could affect someone’s overall ability to drive a motor vehicle safely.

Emergency medical workers who handle patients or victims who are suffering or experiencing rapid or sudden unexplained loss of consciousness, general awareness, or control in any way.

Law enforcement officers may alert DMV if they determine during a traffic stop that someone is a reckless driver exhibiting unsafe driving practices.

Law enforcement officers who have simply observed an individual driving in what appears to be a reckless or unsafe manner may submit to the DMV that the individual should be reexamined.

Driver license renewals done by mail or in person, in which an individual notes that they have a disorder or disability, or disease, that could affect their ability to safely drive a vehicle at certain times, or potentially ongoing.
A poor driving record with multiple traffic law violations, a history of reckless driving, collisions, fraudulent activity regarding licensing, etc.

Concerned family members, people in an individual’s community, or friends who write letters to the DMV regarding a particular individual’s possible inability to continue driving safely.

What is the Process if DMV Determines I Must Be Reexamined?

If the DMV deems, via some notification process, that an individual has a condition, driving record, or other situation that could impact their ability to drive safely, the DMV will then require a reexamination to fully evaluate driving abilities. Some of the ways the DMV might do their investigation during the process are as follows:

The DMV may ask an individual to provide official medical records that demonstrate proof that the individual is competent to drive safely. Medical proof is one way a driver can possibly maintain their driving privileges.

The DMV may decide to have a series of intermittent examinations, possibly in person, or via phone. And again, medical records may be required that demonstrate that continued competency exists to drive safely. Additionally, general DMV testing may be required of the driving candidate, such as testing of driving law knowledge, vision tests, and of course actual physical driving tests.

Individuals who have been flagged for ‘priority reexamination’ are required to get in touch with Driver Safety within a five-day period or driver privileges will be suspended indefinitely. And again, the DMV may require medical records, and testing of driving law knowledge, vision tests, and of course actual physical driving tests.

The DMV does hold the power to immediately revoke or suspend driving privileges in any case such that mental or physical conditions indicate that an individual’s driving practices pose a threat to public safety in general.

What Decision Will the DMV Make Regarding My Case, After the Reexamination Process?

After a reexamination process has been completed, a DMV hearing officer could elect to make any of the following legal action responses:

No Action Response

The ‘no action’ response is obviously the response drivers hope for after a reexamination. With a no action response the driving candidate is allowed to continue driving freely with no restrictions.

Medical Probation Response (Type I)

This response requires a driver to comply with a complete medical regimen and consistently report back to the DMV as changes occur in their medical condition.

Medical Probation Response (Type II)

This response mandates that an individual’s physician submit ongoing, periodic medical reports to the DMV on set dates orchestrated by the DMV.

Calendar Reexamination Response

In this response individuals are required to appear for an additional follow up reexamination.

Restriction Response

With a restriction response an individual will no longer be allowed to drive freely, but will be awarded driving privileges that must adhere to specific conditions and circumstances set by the DMV. Possible restrictions could be as follows: daylight driving only, driving only in select predetermined geographical areas, mandated outfitting of one’s vehicle with specialized equipment to facilitate safe driving, or other reasons.

Suspension Response

With a suspension response the DMV has deemed that driving privileges should be suspended for an undetermined period. An individual may be able to reinstate driving privileges by demonstrating that they are taking actions to address the mental or physical condition, or reckless driving or poor driving record that led to their driving suspension. If the DMV decides that the individual is no longer a risk to public safety, driving privileges may be reinstated, but it is on a case-by-case basis, so there is no guarantee that anyone who has been suspended will be reinstated quickly, or at all.

Revocation Response

With a revocation response, driving privileges have literally reached the end of the road. In this case, the DMV has determined that a physical or mental condition is severe enough that the individual will not likely ever improve to the point of being able to safely drive a vehicle. Additionally, revocation could be the response for drivers who have continued to demonstrate completely reckless driving behavior or have been involved in major driving accidents such that the DMV decides the driver poses an ongoing threat to public safety.

What Will Happen if the DMV Decides to Take an Action Against Driving Privileges?

If the DMV decides to take an action against a driver’s privileges the DMV will notify the individual in writing regarding the following:

  • Any and all action taken
  • An individual’s legal rights, including their legal right to a hearing on the issue

For more detailed information on the complete Driver Safety Administrative Hearing Process (FFDL 26), refer to the DMV website at:

What Would Happen if I Did Not Appear for My Reexamination?

Individuals who fail to appear for the reexamination process as directed by the DMV, whether it was an in-person interview proceeding or scheduled phone interview, will have their driving privileges suspended. This suspension will be ongoing until the individual actually appears and provides the information, or submits to testing as mandated by the DMV.

NOTE: An individual must appear as requested by the DMV. Another person cannot appear on an individual’s behalf, but the DMV will allow another person to accompany an individual to the proceedings or interview with the DMV.

Is the DMV Allowed to Reexamine Me if I Have No Medical Problems, But My Driving Abilities Are, In Fact, Deteriorating?

Yes, the DMV can determine an individual warrants reexamination if any incoming information indicates that an individual’s driving abilities may be compromised in any way.

Is There a Certain Age the DMV Automatically Reexamines Drivers?

No, the DMV does not reexamine drivers based on age.

How Long Could Driving Privileges Be Suspended or Revoked After Reexamination?

The period of suspension or revocation is indefinite, and on a case-by-case basis. It is important to note, however, that the DMV will consider reinstatement of driving privileges in the following scenarios:

When new information becomes available to the DMV that indicates a physical or mental condition has been addressed and controlled, and will no longer pose a potential threat to safe driving practices.

An individual’s driving record no longer shows negligent driving activities.

What if I Need an Interpreter?

Individuals who require a sign language or foreign language interpreter will receive the necessary assistance through the DMV. Individuals requiring special assistance in this manner should contact the DMV early, in advance, to ensure that an interpreter or sign language specialist will be available on the date of the reexamination proceedings.

Codes and Regulations

The California Code of Regulations (CCR) §100.01 as well as the California Vehicle Code (CVC) §§12818, 13800, and 13801, govern all the Driver Safety reexaminations conducted by the DMV.

The CCR and CVC can be accessed through public libraries and are also available for review from DMV Driver Safety branch offices. The CVC can also be found on the DMV’s website at

For Your Convenience: Driver Safety Offices

Individuals with questions or concerns may contact the DMV Driver Safety offices for Driver Safety office location information, general information, and hours.

Phone (661) 833-2103
Fax(661) 833-2102

Phone (530) 224-4755
Fax (530) 224-4737

City of Commerce
Phone (323) 724-4000
Fax (323) 724-9262

Phone (916) 227-2970
Fax (916) 227-2901

City of Orange
Phone (714) 703-2511
Fax (714) 703-2525

San Bernardino
Phone (909) 383-7413
Fax (909) 383-7439

Phone (626) 974-7137
Fax (626) 974-7118

San Diego
Phone (858) 627-3901
Fax (858) 627-3925

El Segundo
Phone (310) 615-3500
Fax (310) 615-3581

San Francisco
Phone (415) 557-1170
Fax (415) 557-7375

Phone (559) 445-6399
Fax (559) 445-6379 or 445-6396

San Jose
Phone (408) 229-7100
Fax (408) 229-7128 or 229-7129

Phone (510) 563-8900
Fax (510) 563-8950 or 563-8951

Van Nuys
Phone (818) 376-4217
Fax (818) 376-4215

Phone (805) 988-3050
Fax (805) 988-1420

Top Gun DUI Defense Attorney Myles L. Berman

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