By: William C. Head and Larry Kohn, Atlanta DUI Lawyers and Traffic Ticket Attorneys
If you see a Georgia State Patrol officer on the highway, that vehicle and that officer are part of the Georgia Department of Public Safety. Two decades ago, this agency also issued driver’s licenses and suspended or revoked licenses. Previously, the department who handled these matters was the DMV in GA.
GA DPS does NOT issue, suspend, or revoke driver’s licenses, or give driving tests like they did a few decades ago. This department is now a LAW ENFORCEMENT agency within the State of Georgia. In addition to the Georgia State Patrol officers, the State has a fleet of Motor Carrier Compliance Division vehicles that monitor tractor-trailer trucks (18-wheelers) and passenger buses that can carry more than 15 occupants.
Twice in the past 20 years, two different Georgia governors (Barnes and Perdue) acted to break general government departments into more focused, specialized departments. Barnes created the DMVS early in his term in office. Then in 2005, Perdue created DDS for the agency issuing licenses and overseeing changes to a person’s driving record and checking his or her status (e.g., see how many points on their GA license). This department also issues a Georgia driver’s license or identification card. This agency is where Georgia residents go to renew their driver’s license, or to correct driver’s license suspensions and revocations.
Today, the Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS Georgia) controls driver’s license oversight and regulation. The Georgia DDS (also known as DDS GA of GA DDS) is now the controlling agency. Due to the common acronym “DMV” being ubiquitous, thousands of people search each year for Georgia DMV, despite that never having been the correct acronym in Georgia. This agency is not the GA DMV any longer.
Many years ago, the Georgia DPS existed in quite a different configuration. When the population of Georgia was much smaller, the Georgia DDS did almost everything as it related to the right to drive in the Peach State. The population growth in Georgia has overburdened this single department for all things dealing with driving privileges.
After taking office in 1998, Gov. Roy Barnes asked the Georgia Legislature to break up the many functions of Georgia DPS, and in 2000, this change took place. On July 1, 2000, Ga. Laws 2000, p.951, created the Department of Motor Vehicle Safety and gave this new department the responsibility for enforcing and administering laws relating to motor vehicle safety, which was formerly the responsibility of the Department of Public Safety.
This Act altered existing Code provisions to reflect this reorganization and transfer of responsibilities. This realignment took some responsibilities away from DPS and gave several duties to the newly-named department. The driver’s license issuance office then became the Department of Motor Vehicle Safety (DMVS). No other state DMV has this acronym, only Georgia.
Call 43-year veteran DUI attorney Atlanta Bubba Head today and get honest and correct answers to all your questions. Tell our motor vehicle offense lawyers everything that happened and everything you remember about your DUI arrest. The sooner you call a criminal defense attorney with our top-rated Atlanta law firm, the better chance you will have to win your case. FREE lawyer consultation.
Remember, after a DUI arrest, you only have 30 DAYS to file a license suspension appeal or your driver’s license will be suspended for up to one year under Georgia DUI laws relating to implied consent! Talk to DUI attorneys Bubba Head, Larry Kohn, or ex-police officer Cory Yager now. Our criminal lawyers near me are available 24 hours a day, weekends, and all major holidays. 404-567-5515
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