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Palm Desert DUI Law Blog

Is entering a plea in a DUI case the best option?

California residents who have been charged with DUI will have a number of legal decisions to make in the process of resolving the issues at hand. Some individuals may choose to fight the charges, while others may choose to enter a plea, which could result in minimizing the the potential consequences. Each of these decisions serves a valuable purpose, but which is considered the best decision for a DUI case?

Unfortunately, there is no clear-cut answer for that question. Every DUI case is different and a one-size-fits-all attitude simply doesn’t work. For some individuals, fighting the charges could result in a complete case dismissal, while others may fight and lose. Entering a plea pursuant to an agreement with prosecutors, depending on the facts of the case, simply may offer the best possible outcome.

A California lawmaker recently made the decision to plead to a lesser charge regarding his DUI case. Instead of fighting the charges, he pleaded no contest, which resulted in him receiving a sentence that includes probation instead of jail time, mandatory participation in an alcohol education course and a minimal fine. This decision simply made sense to him and his particular situation.

Entering a plea agreement is not always an appropriate option for DUI cases, but for some, it may provide a superior resolution to the charges at hand. An experienced criminal defense attorney can offer legal guidance to California residents who are facing DUI-related criminal charges. The information offered can help those accused of impaired driving make the best possible decision regarding their specific circumstances.

How does boating under the influence work in California?

When you think about drinking and operating and vehicle, almost everyone will immediately picture someone driving a car after having too much to drink at a bar. However, there are many cases where an individual has a bit too much to drink while out on his or her boat. This can lead to a complicated charge known as boating under the influence, and in the state of California, this BUI charge can come as the result of numerous actions.

First and foremost, the traditional DUI limit pertains to BUIs. You can’t operate a vehicle if your blood alcohol content exceeds the 0.08 legal limit.

There are two other ways that an individual can receive a BUI. One way is if the individual is a minor. This boating rule is zero tolerance: if the minor has a blood alcohol level that meets or exceeds 0.01, they are in violation of the law. A minor isn’t even allowed to water ski if they have a BAC of 0.01.

The other way a person can receive a boating under the influence charge is if they are a commercial operator of a vessel. In this case, the individual’s blood alcohol level can’t exceed 0.04.

There are many penalties and consequences associated with a BUI charge, and there can be life-long consequences to such a charge. Anyone who is accused of such an offense, needs to consider their response, and they should consult with an experienced attorney to ensure their case is being handled properly.

How can you get a DUI in California and what are the penalties?

Everyone who reads the question posed in the title will likely answer in the same way. “A blood alcohol level of 0.08, duh!” This is true — if your blood alcohol content exceeds the 0.08 limit set in every state, then you are subject to a driving under the influence charge. However, there are also modifiers to that DUI law in certain states, such as in California.

Here in California, you are subject to an enhanced DUI charge if your BAC exceeds 0.16. Enhanced DUIs carry greater penalties. There is also a DUI for underage drinkers and drivers. If such a person is caught and their BAC exceeds 0.02, they are subject to this underage DUI.

In addition to these different charges, California also observes implied consent. Implied consent means that if you have the privilege to drive (i.e. if you have a driver’s license) then you automatically consent to an officer’s request for a field sobriety test or a BAC test.

Given all of these factors, what types of penalties are possible for someone who violates any of the DUI laws here in California? Well, you may have to get an ignition interlock. Such a device is required if an individual receives three DUIs. You could also lose your license, with the length of the suspension ranging from six months (first offense) to two years (second offense) to a decade (third offense). Your vehicle could also be confiscated and you may have to go to alcohol education and treatment classes.

Increased DUI enforcement common during the holiday season

In order to keep California streets save for everyone, it is common for an increased police presence to be felt during the holiday season. DUI enforcement is up, and will likely remain so until after New Year’s Day. Those who are charged with impaired driving during this time have every right to question the charges and defend themselves in court.

Over Thanksgiving weekend, the California Highway Patrol arrested a total of 45 drivers for suspicion of DUI in the San Diego area. This number is slightly higher than the number of those arrested over Thanksgiving in 2013. Statewide, 594 DUI arrests were made, which is a significant decrease compared to the previous year. These numbers only account for arrests made on roadways that are patrolled by the state.

Each of these DUI arrests come with a story. Details specific to each case may be used to help those accused as they work through court proceedings. In situations like this, where officers are purposely looking for impaired drivers, questioning probable cause and officer intent could prove to be helpful in successfully fighting DUI charges.

California residents who are charged and convicted of a DUI offense could face a number of potential consequences. Some of these include an automatic license suspension, jail time and fines. The severity of the accused crime will have an effect on the type of consequences if a conviction is secured. As each of these and other possible penalties can have such a dramatic impact on a person’s life, a number of criminal defense strategies may be utilized to fight the charges and exclude or minimize any potential damages.

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Phone: 760-837-7500
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73-061 El Paseo, Suite 220