Showing posts with label DUI Penalties. Show all posts
Showing posts with label DUI Penalties. Show all posts

Driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs or both is a serious misdemeanor since it endangers your own life and the lives of other drivers around you. In the state of California, it's illegal to be driving any motor vehicle when your blood alcohol count is at or above .08. If you're under 21 years of age, a blood alcohol count of .01 or more is illegal. If you are charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you should hire a DUI attorney. This type of attorney specializes in DUI cases and will have a greater chance of getting your case dismissed or your punishment reduced.

DUI Penalties in the State of California

Authorities in the state of California take DUI offenses very seriously. The penalties enforced by the court are no picnic!

The first time you are caught driving under the influence could land you in jail for anywhere from four days to six months. Usually a fine of $390-$1000 is charged plus penalty assessments. In some cases the judge may allow you to do community service instead of paying a fine. Your driver's license will be suspended for four months or for an entire year if you're younger than 21. The court will decide if your vehicle will have an ignition interlock device installed or if your vehicle will be impounded. Typically first time offenders are required to attend DUI School for at least three months, and they're kept on informal probation for up to three years.

If you're found driving under the influence a second time or more, the penalties for each offense are harder. You'll be in jail for 90 to 120 days with the possibility of doing 10 days community service in exchange for jail time. You'll be fined another $390-$1000. Your license will be suspended for one whole year, and your vehicle will be impounded. You'll be required to attend 18-30 months of DUI School. For a second time offense you'll be placed under informal probation for 3-5 years, but if this is your third offense or more you'll be placed on formal probation for the same amount of time.

DUI Court Procedure in the State of California

Once you've been stopped and arrested for drunk driving, you'll need to contact your DUI attorney so he can be with you during your arraignment, your first appearance in court. At the arraignment, you will enter a plea of guilty, not guilty, or no contest. Then your pretrial date will be scheduled.

At your pretrial, your DUI attorney will attempt to negotiate with the prosecutor and obtain a sentence without proceeding to an official trial. If he and the prosecuting lawyer reach an agreement, the judge will sentence you immediately, but if no agreement is reached your trial date will be set.

You may choose whether or not you want a jury trial. The trial will proceed with opening statements made by each attorney, evidence presented and witnesses questioned. The prosecutor will present his evidence first, and then it will be your attorney's turn. If you choose to use a jury, the entire jury must be convinced of your guilt before they sentence you as guilty of driving under the influence.

Whether you are convicted or not, it's always best to have a qualified and experienced DUI attorney by your side through the entire process.

A great Sacramento DUI attorney can help you navigate the complicated legal system after you've been ticketed. Before you go to court, visit

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