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Mission Valley DUI Defense | California DUI Laws

Arrested for driving under the influence? Contact us now for reliable and effective DUI defense in California. DUI defense lawyer Payman Zargari can help you navigate the complicated California criminal process involved in DUI cases.

Call us at (310) 601-7070 immediately after a DUI arrest. Your best chances of getting out of a DUI case practically unscathed is when you have a competent DUI lawyer present immediately after you have been arrested and brought to the station for processing and questioning. Payman Zargari will help you minimize mistakes that the prosecution could later on use against you.

Payman Zargari is well-versed in DUI Defense, California. Using his experience in the multitude of DUI defense cases he has handled, he can help you get out of DUI charges, if at all possible, or get the best deal possible in a negotiation of terms with the prosecuting attorney.

What is Driving Under the Influence

A DUI offense takes place upon violation of the Vehicle Code Section 23152. Subdivision(a) of this section says it is unlawful to drive a vehicle while under the influence of any alcoholic beverage. Moreover, subdivision(b) of the same Code states that it is unlawful to drive a vehicle if a person has a 0.08% or greater, by weight, of alcohol in his/her blood.

A DUI with injury offense, on the other hand, is a violation of the Vehicle Code Section 23153, which is essentially a violation of the stipulation laid out in Section 23152, except in this case, such violation also results in or is accompanied by injury to another person other than the driver.

Alcohol intoxication is usually determined through blood testing or breath gas analysis. If intoxication is being established through blood testing, percent by weight of alcohol is measured as the grams of alcohol per 100 mL of blood; if by breath gas analysis, it is measured as grams of alcohol per 210 liters of breath. Chemical testing to determine alcohol intoxication can be done within 3 hours after driving.

A DUI conviction may be accompanied by a suspension of the driver's license. A restricted driver's license may be issued. Court-mandated punishment typically varies depending on the number of offenses committed and whether or not the previous offense was punished as a felony.

DUI First Offense

If convicted of a DUI First Offense, the law requires the following punishment:

  • Payment of a $390 fine
  • According to Section 23536 of the Vehicle Code, the fine for a DUI first offense cannot be less than $390 but no more than $1,000.

  • Incarceration in the county jail for at least 96 hours but no more than 6 months
  • Section 23536 of the Vehicle Code also provides that a DUI first offender shall be punished by incarceration of at least 96 hours, at least 48 hours of which must be continuous. The law provides, however, that the days of incarceration shall not interfere with the offender's work schedule.

In most DUI defense California cases, however, the judge typically (and as the law allows) substitutes summary probation for the jail time, although jail time of at least 48 hours but no more than 6 months may still be imposed as a condition of probation.

In California DUI first-offense convictions, the following are the typical conditions of a DUI first-offense probation:

  • Summary probation for a period of 3 years
  • A California DUI first-time-offender is typically given 3 years of probation. During this probationary period, a convicted first-offense DUI offender must not be caught driving under the influence of even the slightest amount of alcohol. Even driving with a Blood Alcohol Concentration of just 0.01% is a violation of this summary probation.

    Aside from driving with an even slightly elevated blood alcohol concentration, a convicted DUI first-time offender must be careful not to violate any law that could lead to his or her arrest.

  • Payment of at least $390 fine plus penalties and assessments
  • Payment of the fine of $390 to $1000 as well as penalties and assessments is typically required as a condition of probation. In Los Angeles, moreover, the fine may be converted to jail time or roadside service.

  • Compulsory enrolment in a DUI first-offender Program, enrolment fee at your expense or your guardian's (if below 18)
  • The Driving Under the Influence Program is typically 3 months long (AB541) but may also be 6 months (AB762) or 9 months (AB1353) long. It is designed specifically for DUI First Offenders. This program may be availed of at approved program providers. Check out this list of approved AB541 providers from the Los Angeles County's Department of Public Health.

  • IID or Ignition Interlock Device Installation
  • This is equipment designed to stop a person from driving under the influence. It is linked to a vehicle's ignition and programmed with the maximum alcohol concentration level. In an IID-equipped vehicle, the driver must first exhale into the IID before attempting to start the engine. If the driver's blood alcohol concentration goes beyond the maximum allowed in the IID's programming, the vehicle's motor will not start.

DUI with Priors

If convicted of a a second-offense DUI violation, or a DUI violation within 10 years of the first-offense DUI conviction, the law requires the following punishment:

  • Payment of fine
  • According to Section 23540 of the Vehicle Code, the fine for a DUI second offense cannot be less than $390 but no more than $1,000.

  • Incarceration in the county jail for at least 90 days
  • Section 23540 of the Vehicle Code also provides that a DUI second offender shall be punished by incarceration of at least 90 days but not more than 1 year.

In most DUI defense California cases, however, the judge typically (and as the law allows) substitutes summary probation for the jail time, although jail time of at least 96 hours but no more than 1 year may still be imposed as a condition of probation.

In California DUI second-offense convictions, the following are the typical conditions of a DUI second-offense probation:

  • Summary probation
  • A California DUI second-offense probation typically lasts 3 to 5 years. The same probation conditions applicable to first-offense DUI convictions also apply in this case.

  • Compulsory enrolment in a DUI second-offender Program
  • The Driving Under the Influence Program for Second Offenders may be 18 months' or 30 months' long.

  • Mandatory incarceration
  • In a second-offense DUI probation, there's a required mandatory jail time of at least 96 hours to be served at two 48-hour intervals.

  • Fine of at least $390
  • In a second-offense DUI probation, a fine of at least $390 but no more than $1000 (plus penalties and assessments) is required.

If convicted of a a third-offense DUI violation, or a DUI violation within 10 years of the first-offense and second-offense DUI convictions, a person will be designated as a habitual traffic offender (Sec 23546, Vehicle Code) for a period of 3 years. The law requires the following punishment in this case:

  • Payment of fine
  • According to Section 23546 of the Vehicle Code, the fine for a DUI third offense cannot be less than $390 but no more than $1,000.

  • Incarceration in the county jail for at least 120 days
  • Section 23546 of the Vehicle Code also provides that a DUI third offender shall be punished by incarceration of at least 120 days but not more than 1 year.

In a third-offense California case, probation with requisite conditions may be instituted. In California DUI second-offense convictions, the following are the typical conditions of a DUI third-offense probation:

  • Summary probation
  • A California DUI second-offense probation typically lasts 3 to 5 years. The same probation conditions applicable to first- and second-offense DUI convictions also apply in this case.

  • Compulsory enrolment in a DUI third-offender Program
  • The Driving Under the Influence Program for third-time offenders is typically 30 months' long.

  • Mandatory incarceration in the county jail
  • In a third-offense DUI probation, mandatory jail time is 120 days, minimum, but no more than 1 year.

  • Fine of at least $390
  • In a third-offense DUI probation, a fine of at least $390 but no more than $1000 (plus penalties and assessments) is also required.

If convicted of a fourth, fifth or subsequent DUI violation, or a DUI violation within 10 years of three or more DUI violations, a person will be designated as a habitual traffic offender (Sec 23550, Vehicle Code) for a period of 3 years. The law requires the following punishment in this case:

  • Payment of fine
  • According to Section 23550 of the Vehicle Code, the fine for a DUI fourth or greater offense cannot be less than $390 but no more than $1,000. Penalties and assessments are also usually added to this fine.

  • Incarceration in the county jail for at least 180 days
  • Section 23550 of the Vehicle Code also provides that a DUI fourth or greater offender shall be punished by incarceration of at least 180 days but not more than 1 year.

This type of DUI conviction is typically accompanied by a revocation of the driver's license.

Is DUI a misdemeanor or a felony?

A DUI offense may be tried as a misdemeanor or as a felony. If your first-offense DUI case is tried as a felony and ends in conviction, you will face graver consequences on a second offense; such consequences include possible imprisonment in the state jail as well as revocation of your driver's license. Thus, if you have been arrested on a DUI charge - even if it's a first-offense DUI - actively protect your rights. Make sure you are represented by a criminal defense lawyer experienced in DUI defense in California.

DUI defense California lawyer, Attorney Payman Zargari, can help you fight DUI charges.

Call us as soon as you get arrested. If you seek our legal help early, we may be able to help you convince the prosecutor that charges do not need to be filed. Fight back with our help.

Fighting a criminal case?

Learn about arraignment, preliminary hearing, pre-trial conference, and jury trial. Read on to find out more about the general criminal process in the State of California.

Read about California's criminal process.

Facing criminal charges?

An arrest can wreak havoc on your life. Learn about your options. Check out the California criminal charges that Attorney Payman Zargari is experienced in handling.

Check out our criminal defense services.

Need a lawyer?

Call us at (310) 601-7070. While it's possible to navigate through the legal system on your own, you'll be so much better off if you have expert legal help to depend on to ensure that you will get the best defense possible given your particular situation.

Get legal help now.

Law Offices of Payman Zargari, APLC

(310) 601-7070
(310) 601-7071

5959 Mission Gorge Road, Suite No. 108
Mission Valley, CA 92120

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