California DUI Laws & Penalties
Being arrested for DUI, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs in California can be a life changing event. Any criminal charge is a difficult experience to face, something you never expected would happen to you. Most people facing their first encounter with the California criminal court system are quite intimidating.
Having the best DUI defense lawyer on your side can be a comfort in a difficult time. We are there to fight for your rights and freedom. Our experienced DUI attorneys will defend you against the DUI charges you are facing and giving you expert legal advice. And you’ll get the peace of mind from knowing that you aren’t alone, and that someone is there who only wants to look out for your best interests.
But time is critical. You have only 10 days from when you are arrested to defend your license loss. So now is the time to get the legal advice you need, no matter what happened.
Drunk driving is overcharged and over-arrested all the time by the police. If there is even the slightest suspicion that you just might be intoxicated, you will be arrested. But being charged is not the same the as being guilty. We prove that in court every day.
Even if you think you might be guilty, you still need someone to fight for you and get you a fair outcome from a hostile or indifferent court system. Maybe you were leaving a holiday party or dinner out with friends, and underestimated how much you had to drink. You may have thought you were okay to drive up until the moment you were pulled over. If you made a mistake, then lets fix it. Unfortunately no matter what the situation was or what led up to your arrest, if your blood alcohol content was over the legal limit, you could be facing some serious penalties.
Please contact us for a free consultation today. We want to talk to you about your California DUI charge, and let you know what you are facing, and how we can help. Call us today to speak with a defense attorney about your drunk driving charge.
California DUI Laws
California DUI law is included in two statutes in the California Vehicle Code. Section 23152a has to do with your state of mind at the time of the law violation. It states that it is illegal for someone to drive while under the influence if they are impaired or unable to drive similar to a sober person.
Section 23152b talks about your blood alcohol content at the time of arrest and makes it illegal for you to drive while your blood alcohol level is .08% or greater. This is determined most often by a breathalyzer test. This test can be preformed within 3 hours of you driving to be admissible in court.
California DUI Penalties & Sentences
How you are sentenced depends on a variety of factors. While there is a minimum sentence in California statute, a judge can increase the recommended sentence for any “enhancements” he sees in the case.
Some examples of enhancements that could affect the severity of your sentence are:
- Speeding at the time of arrest
- Driving under the influence with children in the car
- Being involved in an accident while under the influence
- Driving on a suspended license
Any one of these can seriously increase your potential sentence.
The following are the minimum possible sentences for a first time DUI offense:
- Mandatory 48 hours in jail,
- 12-45 hours of DUI school,
- 6 month driver’s license suspension
- Fines, fees and costs
- 3-5 years court probation
“Court probation” means you are not typically supervised by a probation officer but still must adhere to probation terms like absolutely no alcohol during your term.
Sentences vary from county to county in the state of California. Call us today to discuss any potential sentencing differences in the county of your arrest.
Free Case Evaluation on a California DUI Charge
A DUI conviction can be a permanent mark on your record. An experienced defense lawyer, who knows the criminal drunk driving statutes in California can make a huge difference in the outcome. We will thoroughly analyze your case, and look for the best opportunites to get your DUI case dismissed. Whatever happens, we will make certain you are getting fair treatment under the law in the California Criminal Courts. Everyone is entitled to a strong defense. Call to discuss your DUI case today.