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Going back to Europe after DUI in Germany

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Jul 7th, 2012, 08:22 PM
  #1
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Going back to Europe after DUI in Germany

Hello,

This is my situation, 5 years ago I regretfully took the decision to drive after having some beers in Germany, I've got pulled over and I was arrested. I spent 1 night in jail and paid a fine of around 400 euros, I really don't remember the exact amount, and my licensed was removed from me. I live in Mexico, this was a 10 days trip only so I was let go on day 9 so I came back to Mexico the day 10 with no further problem.

Now I planning to go back to Europe, but this time to France, arriving in Switzerland. Do you think I will have any trouble to get in? Do you think I could drive there?
vagler is offline  
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Jul 7th, 2012, 09:56 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
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What happened in Germany will have no bearing on your visit to France and Switzerland, particularly since you paid the fine.
kerouac is offline  
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Jul 8th, 2012, 12:54 AM
  #3
 
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If you have fulfilled all of your responsibilities in the eyes of Germany, you should have no problems.
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Jul 8th, 2012, 05:57 AM
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This is just in respect of your query as to whether you could drive in the EU. ( I don't know much about immigration).
For many years it has been the intention that information about a conviction and importantly a disqualification from driving in the EU would be available to anyone lawfully seeking information about you from another EU contry. I don't know whether this has happened but it has this relevance to you.
If you hire a car you will almost inevitably have to declare whether you have any driving convictions. It will affect the price of your insurance ( and may also affect the price of the hire). Your car hire company will probably have the right to void your hire if you give incorrect information and if you have an accident or have to claim on the insurance in such circumstances they will probably not cover you.
I am anticipating that you are not still disqualified from driving or my advice would be different.
Frances is offline  
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Jul 8th, 2012, 07:19 AM
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Relax, no problem at all.

Forget this:

>>>If you hire a car you will almost inevitably have to declare whether you have any driving convictions. It will affect the price of your insurance ( and may also affect the price of the hire). Your car hire company will probably have the right to void your hire if you give incorrect information and if you have an accident or have to claim on the insurance in such circumstances they will probably not cover you.<<<

If you have a valid driver's license you have the right to drive anywhere in Europe. After five years, everything will be forgotten.
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Jul 8th, 2012, 08:49 AM
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Hi Frances,
After 6 car rentals in Europe we have never been asked if we have ever had a DUI (we haven't). Do you mean that there is a database that the car rental companies use to look up potential renters to see if they have had a DUI in the past?
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Jul 8th, 2012, 01:01 PM
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When you hire a car you produce your driving license. EU licenses can show driving convictions. The hire company will take account of convictions in respect of selling you insurance and also in deciding how good a risk you are to drive their car. So if you have for example a speeding conviction then the hire cost may be greater. You can see the sense behind this as they want their car back without damage.
However I am not aware that conformity has been achieved within the EU and so it does not at the moment follow that a conviction in Germany would show on a license issued in (eg) the UK.
This is not the same as saying that because a conviction does not show on the license that it does not apply. So someone disqualified from driving in Germany is still disqualified in Germany even though it may not be endorsed on the face of his license. The original poster if he was driving on a Mexican license in Germany can have returned home to Mexico the next day and driven there on that license. If on the other hand he had not returned home and tried to drive in Germany the next day he would have been subject to the disqualification.Any other country in the EU which was aware of and recognised the German disqualification as valid could also have treated him as disqualified.
The point raised by traveller1959 above therefore means that if one produces a valid Mexican license in Germany during a period of disqualification in Germany it will not allow you to drive(as far as I understand).
Because of the lack of uniformity in the EU car hire companies will ask to see your license.They will accept at face value anything endorsed on the license.
In respect of the 5 years after which everything will be forgotten I've not heard of this in the UK. The agreement between you and the hire company is a binding contract. The company rely on what you tell them but they also rely on what is on your license. Certainly in the UK it is open to the company to ask you about any motoring convictions. You can have these removed from your license after 4 years but if you do this you still need to answer questions about convictions not showing, honestly.
As to whether the hire companies have access to the central database (in the UK the DVLA) I cannot tell you authoritatively but I do know that it is accessible to commercial bodies for a fee.
When I referred to the information of conviction and endorsement (in my original post) being available to corresponding authorities throughout the EU, this meant that the court system in a convicting country would feed into the court system in other EU countries . A conviction in Germany would be recognised in eg Italy.
The moral to be drawn from this is that you must tell the truth when asked.
Frances is offline  
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Jul 8th, 2012, 07:41 PM
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Yes, but the OP has a license from Mexico - and would not have any endorsements on it. (In the US licenses don;t have "endorsements". If you pile up too many infractions they can suspend your license - but nothing goes on the actual license for an individual infraction.)

And I can't imagine how a car rental agency in Switzerland would know anything from the Mexican license.
nytraveler is offline  
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Jul 8th, 2012, 08:49 PM
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I hope you've quit drinking and driving.

When did you say you were going?
LSky is offline  
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Jul 8th, 2012, 09:14 PM
  #10
 
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In France, we have a 12-point system in the driving license data base. You lose points for various driving infractions, but the points are returned automatically after 12 months of faultless driving (except of course if your licence has been withdrawn for something serious; in that case you have to get a new one which only has 6 points the first year). As for foreign licences, all that France cares about is that they be valid, but there is no way of checking this.
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