How a DUI Lawyer Can Help with California’s Tough Penalties for a DUI

Oct 15, 2021

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In the State of California, the penalties for a DUI conviction are tough. If you are caught driving with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or above or driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or both, to the point that your driving is significantly affected, you can be convicted of a DUI charge. With an arrest for most crimes, there are no penalties unless you are convicted. However, when you are arrested for a DUI, you may face administrative consequences such as fees and a suspension of your driver's license, even if you are not convicted of the crime. If you are convicted of a DUI, you may face additional criminal penalties as well.

Factors that Affect DUI Penalties

There are several factors that can affect penalties for a DUI conviction in the state of California. Some of these factors include:

  • BAC at the time of arrest
  • Prior convictions
  • If there was a collision that included injuries or fatalities
  • If there was a minor in the vehicle at the time the DUI occurred
  • You were going significantly faster than the speed limit

What you say to the officer at the time of your arrest can also affect the possible punishment that you face for the charges.

Here are some possible fines and penalties for DUI charges:

First Offense Misdemeanor DUI

  • Fines from $390 to $1000 (base fine, will come out to more with assessments)
  • Must complete 3 or 9 month drug and alcohol related education program that is court approved
  • 6 to 10 month suspension of your driver's license
  • Up to 3 years summary probation

Second Offense Misdemeanor DUI

  • Fines from $390 to $1000 (base fine, will come out to more with assessments)
  • 3 to 5 years summary probation
  • Minimum 96 hours up to one year in jail
  • Completion of an 18 month or 30 month DUI School that is approved by the court
  • License suspension for 2 years

DUI with Injury

If an injury occurred when you were driving under the influence, you may be charged with a felony or a misdemeanor. If charged with a misdemeanor you will face the following possible penalties:

  • $390 to $5000 in fines
  • 5 days up to a year in jail
  • Completion of a three, 18 month or 30 month DUI School that is approved by the court
  • License suspension for up to a year

If charged with a felony DUI that included an injury you will face the following possible penalties:

  • $1000 to $5000 in fines
  • 16 month to 10 years in state prison, with additional sentences of one to six years based on how many people were injured.
  • 18 month or 30 month DUI School that is approved by the court
  • License suspension

Know Your Rights

As you can see, if you are arrested for a DUI in California, the penalties can be quite harsh. For this reason, it is important to understand your rights. At Mitchell Law Group, we understand all the fine details that go into DUI laws, and we are ready to help you fight for your rights. If you are in the Fresno area, contact us today to discuss your case.



Category: DUI Defense

Michael Mitchell

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Michael Mitchell is a Fresno attorney who practices in the areas of DUI, personal injury & criminal law. Visit his Google+ profile.