DUI Process In California: Here Is The Information On How It Works
When it comes to driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the justice system in California is rarely inclined to take the offense lightly. After all, according to the official statistical data, DUI drivers cause thousands of car accidents that result in damaged property, injured and deceased individuals.
In case a person is arrested for driving under the influence, he or she will subsequently have the opportunity to arrange a plea. There are three kinds of plea arrangements – “not guilty”, “no contest” and “guilty”. Some people, who know that they are in fact guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, choose to plea “guilty” or “no contest”. That way, they are hoping to satisfy the judge. Pleading “guilty” or “no contest” automatically implies that you cannot argue with the prosecution and you will be sentenced by the court afterwards. However, people, who decide to plead “not guilty” will be scheduled for the upcoming trial at a later date. The accused individual along with his or her attorney will have the opportunity to review all the case evidence, including police reports, chemical lab results, test reports and so on.
The criminal proceeding is not the only hearing that a DUI offender will have to go through. During the arrest, the arresting law enforcement officer will take the driver’s license from the DUI offender. He will provide the offender with a temporary 30 days driver’s license, so the person will have the ability to operate the vehicle for 30 more days, after which the license will be suspended. If a person wants to argue with this decision, he or she will have to file an official request in order to initiate an administrative DMV hearing, where the offender will be able to provide evidence pointing at the absence of crime.
It is important to understand that the legal penalties for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs vary, depending on the number of times the crime was committed before. For instance, first DUI offense is punishable by 6 months of driver’s license suspension, up to 6 months in jail, up to 9 months of alcohol awareness program and up to $1000 in fines, whereas the second DUI offense is punishable by 2 years of license suspension, up to 1 year in jail, up to 18 months of alcohol awareness program and up to $1000 in fines. And for the third DUI offense you will be facing up to 2 year driver’s license revocation, potential jail time, an obligatory alcohol awareness program with SR22 insurance for high-risk drivers. Consequently, the penalties only grow with every next offense. For more information about California DUI laws, get your free consultation now!