CLICK HERE TIPS TO AVOID MISTAKES AFTER A DUI ARREST

When a person has been charge with drinking under the influence in a Los Angeles DUI Case , they will be given a date to appear in Court. This date is their arraignment. At the arraignment, the person’s rights will be read, the charges against them, and the potential consequences they may face. At the arraignment, they will also be given a plea bargain. A plea bargain is an offer made by prosecutors. If you accept the offer that day, you will plead guilty, and the case will be concluded.

The purpose of a plea bargain is to offer a set sentence, that may be lower than what a person could have gotten at Trial. This allows the person to know exactly what they are facing, rather than take the chance in Court. This seems like a great deal, however, it may not be if the person accepting the plea does not know if the offer is a good one.

Let’s consider an example. David has been charged with driving under the influence. He does not want to deal with the whole ordeal and case. He wants it to be over as soon as possible. He appears at the arraignment without an attorney. He has no criminal record, and his blood alcohol level is .09. He failed to stop at a stop sign and was pulled over and asked to submit to a field sobriety test. He was compliant and offered officers all the information that they needed.

At the arraignment, David is read his rights, the charge and the possible sentence. The statute for a DUI includes a potential range of jail time. It could vary based upon the facts of the case and the person’s criminal background. David is offered a fine, 3 years probation and a week in jail. He considers the potential sentence he may face as dictate by the statute and accepts the offer.

What David doesn’t know, and would if he had spoken to and hired a Los Angeles DUI Attorney to represent him is that the offer he accepted is not a good one. First off, David’s blood alcohol level is low. There is a possibility that he could have had the charges reduced with the right negotiation and argument. Furthermore, there is rarely jail time with a low blood alcohol content, and with no criminal history. David would not know that unless he had spoken to an attorney.

If David had been patient, and consulted with a legal professional, he would have been better educated as to what offers were good ones to take. David might have benefited from a plea of not guilty, and further negotiations with prosecutors. If you find yourself in David’s situation, do not hesitate, contact a Los Angeles DUI lawyer as soon as possible so that you are better informed of the decisions you make regarding your DUI charges.

There are many different defenses to a Driving Under the Influence Case. If the facts of your case allow for a strong defense, there is a good probability that you will get your case reduced or dismissed. One such defense is that of the Raising Alcohol Defense.

The raising alcohol defense, simply put, argues that your blood alcohol content rose after you had been driving, implying that your BAC was under the legal limit when you were actually driving.

Let’s consider an example. Donny is going out to a local bar with his friends. All his friends have come over to his apartment, and his plan is to drive to the bar and take a cab back home later on that night. Just as they are leaving his apartment, Donny takes a few shots with his friends, and they head out to the bar. The alcohol has not yet been absorbed by Donny’s bloodstream. As he is driving there, he is feeling fine, and does not feel as if he is intoxicated. Pulling into the bar, Donny makes a right at a red light without stopping and is pulled over by officers. Officers ask Donny if he has been drinking, to which Donny replies truthfully that he has. He is asked to submit to a field sobriety test at the site, to which he agrees. The BAC at the site is .03. Officers take him into custody, and about an hour and a half later Donny is asked to submit to a breathalyzer at the station. This test is not optional, so Donny does not have a choice to refuse. Refusing could result in additional consequences. Donny submits to the test and his BAC is .1. Even though he has not had any additional drinks, the alcohol is now absorbed and impairing Donny.

Continue reading

One set of facts, or incident, can give rise to an innumerable amount of charges. Many people believe that it will be one charge, with additional consequences. That is not the case. If you have been stopped for suspicion of driving under the influence, you could potentially also be charged with a probation violation, if you were on probation at the time.

The best way to understand this concept is through a detailed example.

Some time last year, Don was driving home from a friend’s birthday party. He had have a few drinks and was stopped for suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol. Don was very stressed out about his case, and did not have a lot of money to spend on a lawyer. On his arraignment date, the prosecutor offered to conclude Don’s case that day if he pled guilty. They offered him no jail time, just a fine, and three years of probation. Don immediately took the deal. He wanted his case to be over with so he could move on and stop worrying about it.

Continue reading

Getting arrested for a DUI is a traumatic and difficult time. Many people are very eager to get the case completed and will take a plea bargain or offer to get the case completed as soon as possible. This leads to quick, uninformed decisions. Many times it is advisable to wait and seek the counsel of a Los Angeles DUI Lawyer before entering any type of plea in your DUI case. Entering a plea right away may quickly conclude the case, but the consequences you suffer may linger for quite some time.

Reporting

If you have been convicted for a DUI, it will likely be nothing less than a misdemeanor. This means it will be on your record as a felony or misdemeanor. When you apply to educational institutions, or to take certification or board exams, you will have to list your conviction and explain the situation on your application. It is the same process for when you apply to jobs. The employer will ask you if you have been convicted of any criminal offenses and you will have to state your conviction.

Probation

Generally with a first time DUI offense, you are looking at three years of summary probation. You will be on probation for three years. Any criminal offense during the time period you are on probation will be an additional offense, that of probation violation.

Continue reading

Proposition 47 went into effect on November 5, 2014. It drastically reduces felony cases to misdemeanors when requisite conditions are met. Essentially the proposition reduces the class for certain offenses and allows the offenses to be charged as misdemeanors whereas it would otherwise be a felony.

The purpose and goal behind Proposition 47 is to save funds and direct them towards more community enriching activities like education. Proposition 47 is not an automatic application to all cases, it is specific to each case. People who have previous criminal records, may not qualify. Especially those cases in which there are prior rape, gun or sexual offenses. The court will take all facts concerning a person’s previous criminal history as well as facts of the current case before determining if they will qualify for a reduction under Proposition 47.

In addition, Proposition 47 is retroactive. This means that if someone is currently serving a sentence for an offense that qualifies under Proposition 47, then their case can be reevaluated and a new sentence given.

Continue reading

If you have been arrested for suspicion for driving under the influence, chances are you were also issued a notice to schedule a DMV hearing within ten days. This is a very important deadline and should not be missed. If you miss the deadline, you give up your right to a hearing regarding your driving privileges. Your license will automatically be suspended.

The DMV hearing is a separate case and hearing from the criminal case that will be heard in the criminal courts. It is an administrative hearing. The findings made in a criminal case will not have a bearing on the case before the DMV and vice versa.

This is very important because it implies that you must present strong arguments and cases for both the criminal court and DMV. It will not be shifted over from one case to another, and the ruling from one case will not impact the other.

Continue reading

It is very common for a person to be charged with both a Los Angeles DUI and Hit and Run from the same incident.

If a person is involved in an accident, or property damage and they flee the scene, then they could be charged with a Hit and Run, as well as a DUI if they were intoxicated and operating a vehicle at the time of the accident

What many people do not understand is that a Hit and Run, and a DUI, whether both offenses occur together or separately are a “no fault” offense when it comes to damage or injury. This means that if there is damage to property, and/or injury to a person, it does not matter if it is your fault or not. You will be charged with consideration of the damage or injury.

The reason damage or injury is a significant concern when it comes to a DUI and/or Hit and Run is because it increases your sentence, the charge, and will likely be tried as a felony depending on the specific facts of your case. This becomes increasingly of concern because it will have a major impact on the consequences of your charge, and your future.

Continue reading

In order to be charged with a Los Angeles Hit and Run, a driver must have caused damage to property or injury to person, and have fled the scene without leaving contact information or rendering first aid if needed .One of the major reasons a person flees the scene of a Hit and Run is because they are afraid of being charged with a DUI.

A DUI and a Hit and Run are two separate charges, it is important to understand that. They are not factors or variables to be considered in one charge. What do I mean by that? Lets consider an example that will help clarify this concept.

David is on his way home from a birthday party with his friends. He has had several beers and is not sober. However, he has work early in the morning the next day and feels it is best for him to get home. It is late night, and is raining hard. He can barely see on his way home. Due to the rain he runs into a fence that is a part of someone’s private property .He causes the fence to fall in and break. David gets out of his car and inspects the fence. He also see the lights coming on in the house where he has damaged the fence. David is afraid that if the cops come, they will see the damage and also administer a blood alcohol test that could result in a DUI. He gets in his car and immediately drives away.

Continue reading

When you have been arrested for suspicion of driving under the influence, you will be given a citation. The citation will state the courthouse and the date upon which you must appear. This first appearance is called an Arraignment. Several things will happen at the Arraignment. Each of these things are very important, and it is highly recommended that you have a Los Angeles DUI Lawyer present so that you have the right advice and support in any of the decisions you make.

  1. Offered a Plea Bargain

What is a plea bargain? A plea bargain is essentially an offer made by the Prosecution. Sometimes the offer is a reasonable one, and in your best interest. However, on other occasions it is one that you must pass on and move forward to the Pre Trial appearance, which is the next court appearance. Unless you are a legal expert with thirty years of experience, as well as knowledge of the Judges, and courthouse, it is very difficult to determine whether an offer is a good one or not. Let’s consider an example.

Continue reading

When you have been arrested for suspicion of a Los Angeles DUI, officers will ask you to take a field sobriety test at the scene of the arrest. This test is not mandatory, and is voluntary. This means that you do not have to submit to it, and there are no consequences. However, if you are arrested, you will be required to take one at the station. This test can be a breath test, or a blood test. There used to also be a urine test option but that is no longer the case.

Oftentimes people do not want to take the breath test and opt for the blood test. For example, they may have asthma and are unable to blow hard enough into the breathalyzer machine. If they opt for the blood test, then those results will be provided in two weeks.

However, in certain situations people refuse to take either test. They may have a fear of needles, or they may simply not agree to submit to a test. If you refuse to take either test, it could be categorized as a refusal, and a refusal will be considered an aggravating factor when and if you are sentenced for a DUI. This means that the sentence will be on the higher end of the range, or will have added sentencing because of the refusal or take a test. It is viewed as being uncooperative.

Continue reading