If you have been arrested for DUI in California, it is important to secure good legal representation as quickly as possible. California has some of the strictest DUI laws in all of the country. This is true for both California residents and out-of-state drivers. Fortunately, there are a number of things that can be done to protect your driving privileges and to avoid jail time.
What To Expect
Once you’ve been arrested for having a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher, your arresting officer will inform you that your driving privileges within the State of California will be suspended within 30 days. California police officers do not have the jurisdiction to confiscate out-of-state licenses. The California DMV, however, does have the legal right to take away the in-state driving privileges of out-of-state drivers who have violated state DUI laws. You will need to challenge this suspension within 10 days from the time of your arrest.
Requesting A California DMV Hearing
You will forfeit your right to request a California DMV hearing to contest the suspension of your driving privileges if you fail to request this hearing within ten days from the date of your DUI arrest. Your driving privileges in California will be suspended 30 days from your arrest date. Moreover, additional legal action will likely be taken in your home state if your home state belongs to the IDLC.
At Your California DMV Hearing
Once you have requested a California DMV hearing, the suspension of your California driving privileges will be put on hold and will not go into effect unless you fail to receive a successful outcome at this hearing. With a reputable Los Angeles DUI attorney working on your behalf, it is not necessary for you to physically appear for this hearing. Your DMV hearing can be held telephonically and your DUI lawyer can attend the hearing for you.
During the hearing, the arresting officer will need to prove that:
- Your BAC was 0.08% or above
- Your arrest was lawful
- There was reasonable evidence that you were driving under the influence
Understanding The IDLC
If no action is taken on your part to challenge the suspension of your license, you could suffer further consequences within in your home state. This is due to the Interstate Drivers License Compact (IDLC). 45 of the 50 US states belong to the IDLC which treats each driver as having a single drivers license and driving record. Apart from Wisconsin, Massachusetts, Michigan, Georgia and Tennessee, which do not belong to the IDLC, all states share information pertaining to DUI charges and other driving arrests. Depending upon the severity of your charges and the DUI laws within your home state, additional penalties can include:
- Legal action in your home state if you receive a criminal conviction
- Legal action in your home state if your license is suspended by the California DMV
- DMV penalties in your home state (such as the loss of your license)
How A California DUI Defense Attorney Can Help
A California DMV hearing is much less formal than criminal court proceedings, however, there are still many benefits that you can gain by hiring a Los Angeles DUI defense attorney. This professional can make court appearances on your behalf, negotiate with the prosecuting agency and collect evidence that supports your claims. With an extensive knowledge of California DUI laws, your lawyer will know the best way to present your case and protect your interests.
Call Jon Artz today at 310-820-1315 to discuss your case.