DUI Frequently Asked Questions
If you are facing DUI charges in California, regardless if it is your first offense or you already have one on your record, you are likely overwhelmed and concerned about your future. At The Blalock Law Firm, PC, we believe that everyone deserves compassionate and skilled legal representation, which is why our legal team in Contra Costa is dedicated to obtaining the best results possible. In the meantime, to help shed some light on your situation, we have compiled a list of answers to some of the most frequently asked questions regarding DUIs. Continue reading and then give us a call at (925) 259-3270 to get started on protecting your rights and your future.
- What are the penalties for a DUI in California? This is probably the first question anyone asks themselves after being arrested for a DUI. DUIs are treated seriously throughout the country and California is no different. Depending on the number of DUI offenses you have on your record, the penalties you face will vary. For a first-time offense, you could pay between $390 and $1,000 in fines, have your license suspended for 6 months, and receive 3 years of informal probation and complete 30 hours’ worth of DUI classes. There is also a possibility that you might receive 48 hours to 6 months in jail, though most judges are lenient on first-time offenders and do not order jail time. The fines for a second offense are the same as the first, though you could face between 96 hours to a year in jail. Most of the time this can be served under house arrest or jail-alternative work programs. Second offenses also carry longer license suspension periods and longer probation terms. For third offenses, the fine remains the same, but other penalties increase, often resulting in jail time.
- When can you get your license reinstated after a DUI conviction? Before you can begin reinstating your license, you must wait for the license suspension period to pass. This suspension period will vary depending on how many offenses you have on record. You will also have to complete DUI school and any other conditions of your sentencing before you can begin the process. Next, you will have to get your car insured before you get your license reinstated. Once these steps are completed, you can go to the DMV and apply for reinstatement. To accomplish this, you will have to pay a reinstatement fee. Your DUI will remain on your record, however, until 10 years have passed.
- Can I rent an apartment if I have a DUI? A DUI will remain on your record for 10 years in California, so if you end up having to go apartment hunting, prospective landlords will be able to see that you were caught driving under the influence. Instead of having this pop up and surprise them when they run a criminal background check, honesty is the best policy and could help your chances of being able the apartment you want. The fact is that finding an apartment might become a bit difficult for you, but not impossible if you are able to explain yourself and provide proof of steady employment.
- Can I become a truck driver with a DUI on my record? While you might not have as good a chance as someone who does not have a DUI on their record, it is still possible for you to get a job as a truck driver. This will greatly depend on how recent the conviction was. For example, if the DUI on your record occurred within the past 3 years, it is not likely that a company would hire you. On the other hand, some companies might look at your driving record as a whole, so if the rest of your record is unblemished, you might have a good chance of being hired. After a second DUI conviction, however, you would lose your commercial driver’s license (CDL) for life.
- Can I get a restricted license after a second DUI? Even after a second DUI, it is possible to obtain restricted driving privileges. However, this is only possible if the offense only involved alcohol and if you completed all other mandatory requirements, such as DUI school. You must also wait for the mandatory period of hard suspension to pass before you can apply for a restricted license at the DMV. Remember, a restricted license is not the same as having your license reinstated. You will only be able to drive under limited conditions and, failing to do so can result in your driving privileges being revoked for a longer span of time.
DUI Attorney in Contra Costa County
A DUI conviction can dramatically change your life for many years to come. This is why you need to seek skilled legal representation as soon as possible to protect your future and minimize the damage. At The Blalock Law Firm, PC, we treat our clients with the compassion they deserve. Regardless if this is your first or third DUI, we are prepared to represent you.
For the fierce legal advocacy you need, call us today at (925) 259-3270 to schedule a complimentary case evaluation.