How Do I File a Petition for Writ of Mandate Against the DMV?
Disclaimer: Employees of this office are unable to provide legal advice and are not permitted to assist you in the completion of documents/forms pursuant to Government Code 24004.
This information is provided for the sole purpose of providing a general guideline of the steps necessary to obtain review of an administrative decision of the Dept. of Motor Vehicles (DMV). To request a review of the suspension of your driver’s license by the Department of Motor Venicles, you may file a Petition for Alternative Writ of Mandate. It is the responsibility of the filing party to determine content of pleadings and timelines involved in setting a hearing, noticing opposing parties, manner of service, etc.
To file a Petition for Alternative Writ of Mandate, it is necessary for you to prepare and serve your petition. Form packets are available for free on this website or you may prepare your own pleadings. Blank pleading paper is also available.
If the DMV issued an Order of Suspension because of a DUI (Driving Under the Influence), use Petition for Alternative Writ of Mandate-DUI Forms Packet (Form L-1158) .
If the DMV issued an Order of Suspension for a reason other than a DUI, use Petition for Alternative Writ of Mandate-Non DUI Forms Packet (Form L-1159) .
Court staff cannot assist you in document preparation. If you are not represented by an attorney, you are responsible for preparation of the Petition and the necessary research. The Orange County Public Law Library may be useful for this purpose. The format of the documents must comply with California Rules of Court, rule 2.100 et seq.
The most current filing fees for filing a petition in Unlimited Civil are listed on the court’s fee schedule.
Note: Some parties may qualify for a waiver of court fees. If you wish to apply, forms are available for free on this website.
III. Scheduling a Hearing Date
The Court does not automatically schedule a hearing.
Your case will be assigned to a judge for all purposes. Each has a predetermined time as to when their noticed motions will be heard. This information can be obtained from the Court’s website.
Determine when you wish to have your matter heard (selecting a date and time based on the Judge’s schedule).
Prepare your Notice of Hearing (on pleading paper). Format must be in compliance with California Rules of Court, rule 3.1110, and must include the date, time, and location of hearing (department).
File your Notice of Hearing with the clerk’s office. The fee for filing your notice is the same as for filing a motion in Unlimited Civil. Please check the fee schedule.
When you present your documents at the filing window, be aware that the date you selected may not be available (calendar may be full). If this occurs, you will have the opportunity to select another date and alter your document accordingly.
IV. Filing the Petition
File your petition and Civil Case Coversheet at the Unlimited Civil Case processing windows at the following address:
Superior Court of California, County of Orange
Central Justice Center
700 Civil Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
V. Notifying the Department of Motor Vehicles
Once you’ve filed your Notice of Hearing, you are required to serve the opposing party. Make sure the hearing information appears on the copy served.
All documents and evidence should be filed or lodged with the court prior to the hearing pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure section 1094.5(a) and California Rules of Court, rule 3.1140. Oral testimony is unlikely since such testimony from percipient or expert witnesses may be provided by way of declaration when the moving papers are filed. Therefore, only the party or counsel appearing on behalf of the party should be necessary for the hearing.