DUI Question and Answer

  1. Do I need to request a DMV Hearing?
    1. Yes! You must request a DMV hearing within 10 days of your arrest date.  The arresting officer likely confiscated your California driver’s license and served you with a pink DMV Temporary license.  This Pink Temporary license allows you to drive for 30 days, as long as you had a valid license prior to this incident.  However, if you fail to request a hearing within 10 days, you lose your ability to fight against a license suspension and DMV will automatically suspend your license after 30 days.  The length of suspension varies depending on number of prior DUI offenses, if you refused, etc.
  2. How do I get my driver’s license back?
    1. This depends on how many offenses you have accumulated within 10 years. For a first offense DUI, you are looking at 4-12 months license suspension. You have 2 options for a restricted license:
      1. 4-6 month suspension; unrestricted driving with the following:
        1. Proof of SR-22
        2. Proof of enrollment in a DUI Program
        3. Proof of Ignition Interlock Device (IID) in your vehicle
        4. Pay approximately $300 fee at the DMV
      2. 6-12 month suspension; driving to and from and in the course of work and DUI classes only with the following:
        1. You have to serve a 30 day hard suspension if you lose your DMV hearing
        2. Proof of SR-22
        3. Proof of enrollment in a DUI Program
        4. Pay $125 fee at the DMV
  3. What punishment am I looking at if convicted of a DUI in Court?
    1. Punishments depend on how many DUI offenses you have within 10 years. For a first offense, the minimum punishment includes the following:
      1. 3-5 years summary probation
      2. $2,100 court fine
      3. 3-15 days Public Service Program (PSP)
      4. 3-9 month DUI Program
      5. 1 MADD Class
      6. Up to 6 months in jail
  4. Should I hire an attorney for my DUI case?
    1. You always want a competent DUI attorney to review your case.  Although there are not always issues that rise to the level that we can get the case dismissed, there are plenty of cases where we are able to do just that.  DUI cases are unique in that there are two fronts to fight: 1. Criminal Charges in Court; 2. DMV.  There are ways to win your DMV hearing that don’t apply to your court case and ways to win your court case that don’t apply to the DMV.  It can get very complicated as they are not related and operate independent of each.
  5. The Officer did not ready me my Miranda Rights, does that matter?
    1. It depends.  If the Officer asks you questions before he arrests you, he may not be required to read you your Miranda Rights depending on the scenario.  However, if he arrests you and asks you a bunch of questions relating to the incident without reading you your Miranda rights, then those statements may be subject to being tossed out of evidence.
  6. How can I win my DUI case?
    1. There are a variety of ways to have your DUI case dismissed.  From a Fourth Amendment violation to procedural issue to a Jury finding you Not Guilty.  We have successfully navigated just about every way you can imagine to win your DUI case.
  7. Will I have to install an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) in my car?
    1. For a first offense, the court can order up to 3 years of the IID for a first offense DUI. If not ordered, you have the option to install the IID to be able to continue driving freely if your license gets suspended as a result of a DUI OR you can choose a restricted license (to/from and during the course of work and to/from alcohol classes) on a first offense.
  8. Will I have to serve jail time?
    1. Unless there is bodily injury, jail time is generally not court ordered for a first offense in San Diego. Jail time is definitely on the table if you are a multiple offender. Possible alternatives include CPAC (home confinement) or Work Furlough.
  9. Will I lose my professional license because of my DUI arrest?
    1. It depends what type of professional license you hold.  The most common licensing boards that we see taking action as a result of a DUI charge are: Medical Boards; Registered Nursing Boards; FAA.  Any license in the medical field will present problems if arrested for and convicted of a DUI.  
  10. Can I have my felony DUI charges reduced?
    1. Yes
  11. Can I have my DUI expunged?
    1. Yes, after you have successfully completed probation or had probation terminated early, you can apply for expungement (have the case dismissed).
  12. What is Military Diversion for DUI?
    1. Military Diversion is typically 1-2 years long. You have to prove to the court that you have a mental health disorder that stemmed from your time in the military and provide a nexus between the mental health disorder and how it led to your incident (aka crime). You must also get a treatment plan from a medical professional. If you’re accepted into the program and successfully complete it then your case will be completely dismissed at the end.