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Florida Recognizes DUI Board-Certification (Finally!)

Posted by Tom Hudson | Jul 28, 2015 | 0 Comments

I'm on my way home from Boston and the 2015 Summer Session of the National College for DUI Defense.  (and I think I won the "Last Man Standing" award for 2015, since I am checking out of the Charles Hotel a full three days after the conference ended).

And one of the things we found out in Boston is that the Florida Bar has finally (and grudgingly) agreed to recognize the NCDD's program of Board Certification in DUI Defense.  It has been quite frustrating to be board-certified in this important legal sub-specialty since 2008, and yet to be so hamstrung by the Florida Bar in letting people know about my training and expertise.

The State of Florida has agreed to recognize the distinction.  However, Florida also became the only state in the country to require a separate "Florida-only" section of the exam.  The details have not been made public yet, but it appears that candidates will have to travel to the location of the NCDD Winter Session to take the Florida section of the exam.  This year, that means a trip to Marina del Rey, California in January, to take a two-hour exam.

It's not like the general NCDD exam isn't difficult.  Indeed, it is the legal examination with the lowest pass rate of any bar or specialty exam in the country.  In 2008, sixteen lawyers took the test, and only four of us passed.  In 2015, only one lawyer in the entire United States successfully passed the exam.  

In a sense, I can understand that the Florida Bar wants to insure that board-certified DUI lawyers know about Florida Drivers License laws and the Florida-specific case law.  Since I use this law every day, I'm not concerned about passing this small additional section of the exam.  But the time and expense of flying across the United States just to take a two or three hour exam seems like it might be cost-prohibitive to some lawyers.

Oh well, if a trip to California in January is your worst problem, I guess you are doing okay.

About the Author

Tom Hudson

Known nationwide as a leading DUI defense lawyer, Tom has tried over 350 jury trials, including numerous death penalty cases. He now limits his criminal practice to DUI defense. His civil practice is devoted to getting fair compensation for the victims of negligence. Tom has attained multiple verdicts and settlements in excess of $1 million, and is a Life Member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum. In 2008, Tom Hudson passed the National Board Certification Test for DUI Attorneys in Honolulu, Hawaii. NOTE: The State of Florida does not yet recognize DUI defense as a Specialty.


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Board Certification as a DUI Specialist by the National College for DUI Defense. Formal NHTSA Certification as an Instructor of the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests given by police in DUI cases. Formal training as a NHTSA Drug Recognition Evaluator. ("Drug Evaluation & Classification") Formal training to operate the Intoxilyzer 8000, Florida's official breath test instrument. Extensive experience in teaching other attorneys how to handle DUI cases. Hundreds of jury trials both as defense lawyer and as prosecutor.