- October 19, 2018
- Laura Morris
There are over 160,000 arrests for DUI in California each year. If you drink and drive, there is a good chance you will be caught. DUIs carry serious penalties, such as:
- losing your license
- potential jail or prison time
- and increased insurance costs
Keep reading to learn more about getting a San Diego DUI and the potential penalties you might fact.
Everything You Need to Know About a San Diego DUI
In California, it is against the law to operate a motor vehicle when your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is higher than a certain level. According to San Diego car accident attorneys, If your BAC percentages are at or above the following limits, you can be arrested and charged with a DUI in California.
- 08% or higher for those 21 years and older
- 04% or higher for operating a commercial vehicle
- 01% or higher for those under the age of 21 who are operating a motor vehicle
You also can face DUI charges if you are under the influence of medications. You can’t legally drive if you are under the influence of medications that can alter your mental state, as stated by San Diego car accident attorneys.
The penalties you face for a San Diego DUI will depend on whether it’s your first offense or if you have previous DUI convictions.
If it’s your first offense, and you are over the age of 21, you’ll face the following penalties:
- license suspension for up to 4 months
- up to 6 months in jail
- up to $1,000 in fines (this does not include any legal fees)
- ignition interlock device in your car
- attending a DUI education program
After your first offense, the penalties get even stiffer. For second and subsequent offenses, you face:
- longer license suspension
- longer jail time
- increased fines and fees
For any DUI offense, you’ll also need to obtain an SR-22 form, which documents that you have insurance that meets state requirements. The SR-22 is for high-risk drivers and gives the state permission to verify, at any time, that you have the proper insurance coverage.
Insurance premiums after a DUI are extremely expensive, and it is often difficult to find a company who will insure you after a DUI.
What Happens if I Refuse A Breath Test?
California, like many states, has implied consent laws. This means that by driving a car on California roads, you are giving consent for law enforcement to test you to determine if you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
If you refuse, you must pay a fine and your license will be suspended. For the first refusal, your license is suspended for a year, and for any subsequent refusals, the suspension period is even longer.
The Bottom Line
DUIs have serious penalties for drivers and can result in injury or death of passengers or those in other cars. If you have been the victim in a car accident where the driver was drinking and driving, contact us today to see how we can assist you.
An experienced (practice area) attorney can help you get compensation for things like:
- Medical bills
- lost wages
- pain and suffering
- transportation costs
- and more
We’ve helped other victims of San Diego DUIs win multi-million dollar lawsuits against intoxicated drivers.
If you’ve been injured and suspect a driver involved in your accident was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, give us a call. We’ll put our best San Diego car accident lawyers on your case. And with our no-fee promise, you won’t owe us a thing unless we win your case!
The Barnes Firm (800) 800-0000