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Penalties for a DUI in San Francisco CA

The penalties for a DUI conviction in California can be far-reaching, especially if it is not your first offense, which is why a DUI attorney in San Francisco is of the utmost importance. If you are a first-time DUI offender, you will face fines, with a possibility of a license suspension and jail time, but the penalties can be much steeper and more far reaching if you are a repeat offender. When you first meet with your San Francisco DUI attorney, he or she will inform you of what you are up against, how it can be an uphill battle and what can happen if convicted.

For a second-time DUI conviction, you can face a minimum fine of $390 and a maximum fine of $1,000. Each of these come with additional mandatory penalty assessments that make the fine even higher. You license can be suspended by the DMV for up to two years and you may also spend a minimum of 90 days in jail and a maximum of a year behind bars. There is also the possibility that you may be placed on probation, in which case your jail time would be lessened. Your vehicle may also be impounded and you may be required to enter an alcohol treatment program.

A third time offender can have their license revoked for up to three year and you could be legally labeled as a “habitual traffic offender”. You may also not have your license reinstated unless you can prove that you attended a treatment program that was successfully completed. If you drive with a suspended license when labeled as such, the consequences can be even more devastating than anything you have experienced with DUI charges in the past. Avoiding a conviction should be of the utmost importance and that is why it is necessary to have an experience and knowledgeable San Francisco DUI lawyer on your side.

One DUI charge can change your entire life. If convicted you will have a criminal record, could lose driving privileges which can make getting to work more difficult, your insurance premiums may skyrocket and future employment opportunities can be bleak.

This can take its toll on your family, cost you a fortune in fines and court fees and also disrupt the course of your life for months at a time. While it is never a good idea to get behind the wheel while intoxicated, what you face legally can be devastating. If you have a legal battle ahead of you, call a DUI lawyer in San Francisco today to help you in the fight of your life.

Chemical DUI Testing in San Francisco

Breathalyzer tests are the most common methods in determining if someone is driving under the influence of alcohol. While California law does not require a suspect to submit to a breathalyzer test, many people do not realize this and will take one if pulled over under the suspicion of DUI. However, the accuracy of breathalyzer tests have been called into question in recent years and this is a defense that many San Francisco DUI attorneys can use when preparing for your day in court.

If a breathalyzer test is the only concrete evidence that someone was driving under the influence of alcohol, then many scientists are beginning to believe this alone is not enough evidence for conviction. There have been cases where there is a discrepancy of up to 15% between the Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) found with a breathalyzer test than found with an actual blood test. Several factors can contribute to this discrepancy, including overall physiology as well as gender. Many women process alcohol in their blood differently than men do and different concentration levels can be found. In California, a BAC of .08% or higher is grounds for a DUI charge, but a DUI attorney in San Francisco can argue that the test may not be an accurate reflection of how impaired someone was when they got behind the wheel.

This also can relate to the inaccuracy of an actual blood test, as these tests only measure the concentration of alcohol in the blood and have no way of telling how much of the alcohol actually went to the brain and affected how that person would drive. Field sobriety tests should also be used in conjunction with tests that test BAC. However, the only two tests that experts agree are highly accurate is when a suspect is asked to turn around and also follow a pencil with his or her eyes that the officer is holding.

Also, if you were not drinking at all, but were driving under the influence of drugs—whether illegal or not—then a breathalyzer test is worthless because its only purpose is to detect alcohol. Blood tests must be given to detect drugs and their accuracy can be called into questions as well, depending on when the blood test was administered and a San Francisco DUI lawyer will investigate all aspects on how and why an arrest was made.

It is the job of the prosecution to prove that someone was driving when they legally should not have been and when they were impaired. It is the job of a DUI lawyer in San Francisco to call into question both procedures done at the time of arrest and also tests performed to make sure the defendant was indeed too impaired to drive.

Your License Is At Stake With a DUI

What happens to your drivers’ license in California after being charged with a DUI is a valid concern. You may need your license for your livelihood to get to and from work, and maybe even to do your work. Not being able to drive can affect you in more ways than you ever imagined and this is one of the reasons you are giving the right to request a hearing with the DMV about the state of your license within 10 days of it being confiscated at the time of your arrest.

If you contact the DMV’s Office of Driver Safety and request a suspension hearing on your own, then there is a chance you will encouraged to agree to a phone meeting. You may not realize that you have a right to a San Francisco DUI attorney for this hearing and that it is often best to have this attorney make this request on your behalf. A lawyer will help make sure you get an in-person hearing, which is usually more successful than one over the telephone.

Once the request for the hearing is made, a DMV employee will review your case to make sure all paperwork has been filled out by the arresting officer according to procedure and that there were grounds for an administrative license suspension. The hearing will usually take place within 30 days of request, but this is not always the case. The hearing will also take place at a Driver Safety field office as close to where the arrest took place as possible, but if this is not convenient for the defendant or his San Francisco DUI lawyer then a request for a change of venue is allowed.

A DMV employee will serve as both prosecutor and judge in this hearing, whether he or she has legal training or not. This employee will be the person to question you on the incident that led to your arrest and license confiscation and also make the decision about the suspension. The deck may seemed stacked against you on your chances of retaining your license permanently, but with a good DUI attorney in San Francisco by your side you have a better chance than if you chose to go it on your own.

If you are faced with both criminal charges and also the possibility of losing your license and possibly your livelihood, contact a DUI lawyer in San Francisco today to discuss defense possibilities.

Your Rights When Charged With a DUI in San Francisco

It is important to know what your rights are when charged with a DUI in the state of California. A DUI arrest anywhere does not mean that you had a few sips of alcohol and then got behind the wheel of a car. When arrested for driving under the influence, alcohol is not the only thing you need to be under the influence of. DUI can also mean you have taken drugs—whether legal or illegal—and you operated a motor vehicle when you mental skills and motor skills were impaired. This means that an officer needs to have probable cause to pull you over and test your sobriety and every procedure he handles needs to be by the book. These are the things a San Francisco DUI attorney will investigate when preparing your defense.

When an officer pulls you over either seemingly randomly or at a specified DUI checkpoint, you are not required to submit to field sobriety tests or even Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) tests at the scene. If you do refuse these tests, you cannot be charged with the offense of driving with a BAC of .08% or more and will only be charged with a DUI offense. If you do take these tests and your BAC is .08% or higher, then you will be charged with two offenses, yet only receive sentencing as if it was one offense, according to California law. However, it is also required that you be giving a choice or breath or blood testing to determine what your BAC is. There is also some question of whether breathalyzer tests are even accurate and this is a defense you DUI attorney in San Francisco can use while trying your case. Some field sobriety tests have been shown to be inaccurate as well in recent years, so proving that someone was driving under the influence has become more difficult.

You also have rights in regard to your drivers’ license. It will be confiscated at the scene, but you must be informed that you have 10 days to request a hearing about your license suspension that would take place before your criminal hearing. If you request a hearing on your own, you may be encouraged to accept a phone hearing. A San Francisco DUI lawyer can request a more effective in person hearing and prepare a better defense for you.

Just because you face criminal charges does not mean you don’t have rights. Call a DUI lawyer in San Francisco to discuss these rights today.

 

 

 

San Francisco DUI Penalties to Expect

When you are facing a DUI charge in the state of California, the consequences that can occur may not only affect you in the near future, but they can have an impact on the rest of your life. A conviction and a criminal record may affect your employment possibilities and even your insurance rates. You never want to drive while intoxicated, but if you do make that fateful mistake, your best offense is a good defense and an experienced San Francisco DUI attorney can provide just that.

First time DUI offenders in California can expect to pay a fine of up to $1,500 if convicted. If this is a second or third offense in under 10 years, the fines can be much higher, depending on the jurisdiction are arrested and tried in. First time offenders can also lose their drivers’ license for up to six months and may be required to attend a state-approved DUI education course for three months. The prospect of jail time also looms, with a minimum sentence of four days and a maximum sentence of six months. With such dire consequences, it is imperative that you have a good DUI attorney in San Francisco on your side to help you receive minimum penalties rather than maximum. Many San Francisco DUI lawyers know the ins and outs of DUI courts, as well as judges’ preferences and habits and can plan your defense accordingly.

The penalties for DUI charges can be even more harsh if there were other circumstances. These other circumstances are known as enhancement and whether you are a first time offender or not, the penalties can be devastating. If you were speeding at a rate of 20 MPH over the limit on street roads and 30 MPH over the limit on the highway, your penalties may be more severe as well. If you had a minor under the age of 14 years old in the passenger of the vehicle when arrested, then you can face a higher fine, a longer license suspension and more jail time. For those who have been convicted of a DUI two times or more over the last decade, and fall under these categories, a conviction can change the entire course of that person’s life.

A DUI charge is not a laughing matter, and neither is getting behind the wheel of a car when you shouldn’t. But, it should not destroy your life. If you are facing high fines and jail time for allegedly driving under the influence, call a DUI lawyer in San Francisco today for an excellent defense.

The Right Attorney for Your San Francisco DUI Charges

Choosing who to hire as your San Francisco DUI attorney when you are facing these serious charges is not a decision you should make lightly. A DUI conviction can have an impact on your life not just in the present, but for years to come. You will have a criminal record, could spend time in jail, be subject to hefty fines and lose your license for quite a bit of time. These are things you can ill afford and the best defense possible can help you avoid some worst case scenarios.

In order to make sure you are adequately represented for your drivers’ license suspension hearing, you need to start doing your homework almost immediately after your arrest in the search for the right DUI attorney in San Francisco. You need to request that hearing within 10 days of your arrest and although you are free to request it yourself and represent yourself, things may go much smoother if you have a professional by your side.

You may wonder where you should start in this search for an excellent DUI defense and be tempted to just open the Yellow Pages and just choose the first name you see. While the Yellow Pages and even the Internet can certainly be a resource, choose several names that may eventually make your short list.

You can also turn to the California bar association for a list of San Francisco DUI lawyer and their credentials. Another referral source could be friends of family. You may not want to admit you are facing a DUI charge, but there is a chance someone you know has been through the same thing. Not only can they serve as a source of moral support, they may also be able to recommend a good attorney to defend you.

Once you have compiled a short list of attorneys, call them and briefly explain your case. You can often get a good feel for a person from one conversation so after you have narrowed down your list some more, set up an in person meeting with one or two. Be sure to ask about their experience and success rate with these cases, and also be on the lookout for promises that seem too good to be true because most of the time if they seem that way, they are. Up front honesty about what you are facing and how difficult your journey may be shows integrity in a lawyer. If you are facing DUI charges and feel you have no place to turn, call a DUI lawyer in San Francisco today for help.

What Can You Do When You or A Friend Got Charged for DUI?

If you or a friend or relative has been charged with DUI, the very first thing which you should do is to get an attorney at law. DUI officers in San Francisco do everything they can to convict DUI wrongdoers so you basically need to be defended by a good DUI defense attorney.

Searching on a listing of San Francisco DUI attorney law contacts is not enough to get the best legal counsel who will be given the task to handle and manage your needs. You require someone who is knowledgeable on the matter.

In looking for a lawyer, it is crucial that you look into the qualifications of the person not forgetting his/her professional history.

It’s better to have a defense attorney who concentrates on DUI suits.  The focus, background, and experience of each and every attorney at law are crucial for the case in point.  As far as possible, research the lawyers in San Francisco who are specialized in DUI suits. Attorneys can handle the great majority of cases. There are law firms that attend to corporate legal philosophy, child abuse, assault defense reaction, fierce crimes defense mechanism, etc. Seek out DUI defense legal counsel.

You have the freedom to choose between a private and a public lawyer.  Public lawyers can be a good option. Many people choose to get the services of private legal representatives because they think they are definitely in a better position to deal with the case at hand. Well, there are public attorneys who are also skilled enough to handle DUI issues. These lawyers are seasoned with experience. Just consider the amount of cases they handle every day. If you don’t have enough money to repay a private defense attorney, you can opt for a public one.

Find a lawyer you will be comfortable with. Do you need a new or a middle aged attorney? Do you prefer a male or a female? These things are really important because as much as possible, you will wish to be comfortable with the lawyer or attorney whose going to help you through the case. During the trial, you will have to meet with your lawyer to hash out the course you’re going to take. Between a lawyer and the client, trust and respect is essential.

DUI in San Francisco – Some Things to Remember

In San Francisco, DUI laws are enforced to the letter of the law. Whoever you are, you can get held for driving while intoxicated. A DUI criminal charge can adversely bear upon your life, work, and reputation. If you’re hoping to get employed by a major company, you might find it very difficult if you have a DUI record. And it takes years before that record can be erased! A single breach of the law in DUI can mean money, time and stress.  In these hard times, facing legal charges is something that you don’t want to get, irrespective of how less serious the charge is.  Policeman in San Francisco are executing drunk-driving tests, or sobriety tests, on a regular base trying to prevent incidents arising from DUI.

But sometimes, things occur just because they do. And whatever the case, if DUI happens to you personally, you will need some assistance. As a citizen in San Francisco, California, one must always be absolutely conversant of your rights during DUI proceedings.

It is a basic right of any person, regardless of his/her stature in life, to obtain due process. We can find this right stated in the United States Constitution. Therefore, it is your right to be assisted by a lawyer. When charged with DUI, call a DUI attorney in San Francisco law agency as soon as possible. Be sure to hire a professional attorney to make sure you’ll have a more substantial chance of coming through the case. The law firm will be there to uphold your rights and make sure you are represented during the entire court proceedings of the case.

During DUI cases, the incriminated has two options regarding the law court hearings. You can either decide to use to have a jury which will be made of several people to conclude whether you are guilty or not. If you don’t want to have a jury, you can simply choose that the judge decides on your case. Your San Francisco legal professional law counsel will give you information and facts on which option   is better for your situation.

The attorney can question credibility of the one who incriminated or charged you of breaking the regulations on DUI. For example, the policeman did not use breathalyzer or any form of sobriety trial,   however, you were arrested. Your  legal professional  can therefore question  the  genuineness of the  allegations and  likely have  the case  disregarded  because of the lack  of proof .

DUI – Why is It So Important to Find a Lawyer?

If you, or a colleague, or distant relative has been accused with DUI, the first thing that must be done is to get a legal professional. DUI authorities in San Francisco shall do everything they can to convict DUI wrongdoers, so you essentially need to be represented by a good DUI defense attorney.  When looking for an attorney at law, it is essential that you go over the success rate of the person, in addition to his or her professional qualifications.

Looking up a list of San Francisco DUI Attorney law contacts is not really enough to get the best lawyer who is required to care for your needs. You are in need of someone who is an authority on the subject.

San Francisco DUI Attorney Legal Representation


Opt for a defense attorney who concentrates on DUI lawsuits. The comprehension, expertise, and experience of each and every legal professional are all important to any case. As far as possible, limit your choice to the legal professionals in San Francisco who are absolutely specified in DUI lawsuits. Law offices can handle the great majority of the different kinds of cases, but then again; you want to get someone who is more experienced in DUI cases. There are attorneys that focus on differing matters of law like child abuse, rape defense reaction, vehement offenses defense, and so on.

Looking for DUI defense counsel
Public lawyers are an option. You have the right to pick between a private and a public a lawyer. Many people choose to use the services of a private barrister because they think they usually are in a better position to deal with DWI cases. Well, they are possibly the better choice but some public legal counsels are also competent enough to manage DUI cases. These lawyers are seasoned with experience. Just think about the number of cases they manage every day. If you don’t have enough wages to pay a private defense attorney, you can opt for a public one. During the trial, it is sensible to meet with your attorney to talk over the course of action you’re going to take. Between a DUI defense attorney and the client, trust and confidence is critical.

Find an attorney at law that you are comfortable with. Do you need a young or a middle aged lawyer? Do you favor a male or a female? These things are really important because as much as possible, you want to be comfortable with the legal representative whose going to stand for you.

Dealing with DUI Laws in San Francisco

Driving while inebriated can bring you many problems. You can get arrested, you can lose your license, the value of your automobile insurance may greatly rise, and you can end up ruining your excellent reputation with criminal records, which is one thing you don’t want to happen, especially if you’re aiming for a good career and a good life.

DUI laws in America are very complicated and each year, new policies are being laid out and heavier penalizations are made. In dealing with this serious offense, you need the help of a DUI lawyer in San Francisco CA.

Start taking action as soon as possible.  If you have been prosecuted for breaking DUI laws anywhere in California, you will be confronted by criminal and civil liability cases. In the first case, you will be tried under the courts in California and from there, it will be resolved whether you are accountable for breaking the law or not.  The civil case is handled by California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and it will be determined whether you will still be able to keep your driver’s license.  When facing a DUI charge in San Francisco, there are essential things you need to be aware of. Never set aside things.

When employing a specialized attorney, remember to base your selection on those who are experts in DUI laws. Even if you think there’s no possible way that you can avoid the penalty or fines, a skilled attorney can certainly improve your level of optimism.

Finding a lawyer – what to consider

The best way of dealing with this situation is to hire a reputable San Francisco DUI Attorney. Since its a legal matter, you essentially need legal aid and you can only get it from attorneys. Lawyers do have specialization in the field of legal issues. Because there are many fields of law in the country, it’s very hard to focus on one area. There are attorneys who specialize in divorcement laws. There are attorneys who specialize more in civil cases. Others are into criminal and corporate laws.

Don’t take DUI violations lightly because the penalties that may be inflicted on you are harsh. Aside from the theory of being judged and losing your driver’s license, you might be obliged to pay for fines which can be very costly. Remember, DUI infringement is an offense and it can be damaging if you get convicted of this crime.