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How does the DMV learn about a Lapse of Consciousness or Control?

Common Sources

Of all the state agencies in California, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is among the most interactive with the general public.  As a result, the DMV is “hardwired” into fabric of our society in a variety of ways and, as a result, information flows into the department from a variety of sources.  Even though a Lapse of Consciousness or Control seems like an incredibly private issue, there are a number of ways the DMV will learn of such an event.  Some of the most common are:

  • Physicians or other Medical Professionals.
  • Law Enforcement Officers
  • Family or friends
  • Social Media
  • Anonymous tipsters
  • The individual driver

Although the DMV may learn of a Lapse of Consciousness or Control through any of these sources, there is no question that the most common source of information is Physicians or other Medical Professionals.


Health and Safety Code Section 103900 (a)

Health and Safety Code Section 103900 (a), makes it mandatory for all doctors to report such events to the DMV:

“Every physician and surgeon shall report immediately to the local health officer in writing, the name, date of birth, and address of every patient at least 14 years of age or older whom the physician and surgeon has diagnosed  as having a case of a disorder characterized by lapses of consciousness.”

California State Law makes it mandatory that any Physician or other Medical Professional who learns of a Lapse of Consciousness or Control involving a person over the age of 14, MUST REPORT the incident to the Department of Public Health who, in turn, reports the incident to the DMV.  This is a perfect example of how the government has inserted itself into the relationship between doctors and their patients.  By threatening to suspend the medical licenses of physicians who fail report a Lapse of Consciousness or Control, the State of California makes doctors more concerned about protecting their professional license than protecting the privacy of their patients.

Confidential Morbidity Report

In cases where a Physician or other Medical Professional learns of a Lapse of Consciousness or Control, they will report the event by preparing and filing a Confidential Morbidity Report with the Department of Public Health.  This one-page report is vague and ambiguous and actually provides very little information regarding the event being reported.  Nonetheless, once the received, the department will act swiftly to suspend or revoke the driving privilege of the affected driver based upon the information received from a physician.

Quality DMV Defense From Industry Experts

We understand our client’s fear and objectives and will strive to meet or exceed their expectations. The mission of California Drivers Advocates is to provide the highest quality representation to our clients at administrative hearings before the California Department of Motor Vehicles.

Don’t let the DMV steal your driver license without a fight. Call CDA today 888-281-5244