California DUI Defense Attorney In Orange County
Driving under the influence in the most frequently charged crime brought against people throughout the State of California, and the courts in Orange County are extremely strict when it comes to DUI offenders. Unfortunately, many people fall under the mistaken impression that DUI is not as serious a charge as other felonies, but the consequences can still be severe. It is always in your best interests to discuss with a lawyer your opportunities to defend yourself against this change.
DUI Penalties In California
The penalty for a first-time DUI offense can include alcohol abuse programs, fines, a driver’s license suspension to as many as six months in jail. If this is your second, third, or fourth DUI offense in Orange County, the punishments will only escalate. Remember, that if you are convicted of DUI in California, the conviction will stay on a person’s record for as long as 10 years and can affect things in your future such as your employment status, your credit, and your car insurance. Since there are serious ramifications for your future, it is in your best interests to take a DUI case seriously. You need a DUI defense attorney in Orange County who has a track record of effectively representing individuals in your position, who has comprehensive familiarity with the legal issues of a Orange County drunk driving case, and can use time-tested tactics for your defense.
DUI Testing In Orange County
Never assume that simply because you tested higher than the legal BAC limit that the case is immediately over. An experienced Orange County criminal DUI defense attorney can help to evaluate all options in your defense. You need a skilled negotiator who will explore every opportunity. Scrutinizing the evidence for problems in the prosecution’s case may help you to avoid the criminal consequences of a conviction.
DUI Arrests In Orange County
Many DUI arrests in Orange County are developed on the idea that because you’ve failed the standardized field sobriety test that you were guilty of DUI. However, even those these tests are created by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, they are very faulty, subjective, and often cannot be admitted as evidence in court. If this is your first time in the criminal justice system, you may be frustrated by the situation, and police officers may try to use this to their advantage. An experienced Orange County DUI defense attorney, however, can assist you with navigating this entire process. In some situations, you may be able to avoid having to appear in court.
Previous DUI Convictions
If you have already been convicted of a DUI in Orange County, you will have a criminal record, and this can follow you for many years to come and will come up each time that you need to pass a background check. And you may also be responsible for disclosing this fact on job applications. An expungement, with the help of a Orange County criminal defense attorney, can assist you with the process and help you with figuring out what you need to do next to protect yourself.
Drunk driving can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony in California, but the vast majority of DUIs are misdemeanors. If you have been convicted of four or more DUIs, however, the district attorney may use his or her discretion to charge you with a felony. This is also true if you are accused of causing injury while driving under the influence. A felony prosecution can lead to over a year in a state prison, so you should take it seriously.
The punishment will always depend on the crime, and the same is true for a DUI. For a first-time DUI offense in Orange with a blood alcohol level that comes in below .20%, the maximum penalties include six months in county jail, six months of a suspended license, fees, fines, and summary probation for between three to five years. The penalties can be more severe, however, if your blood alcohol was above .20%, if you had a minor inside the car, or if you injured someone in an accident.
DUI License Repercussions
Many people have questions about what happens to their license if they are convicted of a DUI in Orange County. The court sends an abstract to the DMV to suspend your license after you have been convicted. This is an action that is distinct from your criminal charges or any other suspension that could have been imposed through an administrative hearing based off the arrest.
If you have a commercial driver’s license, bear in mind that anyone driving a commercial vehicle is held to a .04 blood alcohol content rather than the .08 blood alcohol content requirement that applies to everyone else. The DMV sill suspend any commercial license for up to one year without eligibility for a restricted commercial license, even though you may be able to apply for a Class C Restricted License after 30 days of a hard suspension. Given that your ability to earn a living is tied to keeping a DUI off your record, you need to respond appropriately with the right defense attorney.
DUI Legal Help
A lawyer can help you evaluate what to do and avoid some of the most common mistakes. Not hiring an attorney, failing to take the matter seriously, not getting a temporary license, or requesting a DMV hearing within 10 days, hiring an attorney based off the fee alone, and to requesting that the arresting officer be present at your motor vehicle hearing are some of the most common mistakes made by those accused of DUI in Orange County. Make sure that you understand the benefit of having an attorney at your side for the duration of your case.