Get a DUI Attorney Near Me
DUI is a very serious charge in Gardena. No longer a simple traffic violation, DUI is treated as a criminal act. Even a first time DUI charge carries the possibility of jail time, plus license suspension, thousands of dollars in fines and fees, and a black spot on your record that can affect your employment. You need to defend yourself.
The best way to do that is by speaking to a Gardena DUI lawyer. DUI lawyers routinely help people defend themselves and avoid the toughest penalties. A good lawyer may be able to reduce your DUI charge to a lesser violation, help you keep your driver’s license, or even win your case outright. They can also save you a lot of money.
The Cost of a DUI in Gardena
DUI laws have gotten tougher in recent years, and the city of Gardena has cracked down. There’s a reason for this—it’s because each DUI conviction brings money to local government. A single first time DUI can now result in over $15,000 of fines and fees. It should be no surprise that Gardena participates in large scale DUI crackdowns with neighboring communities to rack up as many arrests as possible.
But the dollar cost isn’t the only penalty you face. California law sets tough sentences for all DUI’s, and they only get tougher if you’ve had previous convictions. The penalties for a first time DUI include:
- Jail time. All DUI’s now carry potential jail time. For a first offense the sentence can range from 2 days to 6 months.
- License suspension. A first time DUI offender will lose their driver’s license for a minimum of four months and often up to a year.
- DUI School/Alcohol Treatment. All DUI offenders must attend “DUI School,” a deterrent program that lasts at least three months and costs hundreds of dollars in its own right.
- Fines. The official minimum fine for a first offense DUI is $390. But the court will add a variety of “assessments” and the minimum cost will end up being more like $1,800.
Penalties for repeat offenses are even tougher. You could face up to a year in jail time or over a year in a state prison. License suspension can last two years, three years or more, and so can DUI school. And the fines can easily spiral over the $10,000 mark.
How to Beat a Gardena DUI
Each DUI case is unique. However, most follow a similar pattern. A typical DUI will begin with an arrest by the Gardena Police Department, the LA County Sheriff or the California Highway Patrol out of the South Los Angeles office. In most cases you will be held overnight at the Gardena Jail located in the Gardena Police Station. You immediately face a variety of legal deadlines, and to fight your DUI you have to know how to handle each one.
The major deadlines of a DUI case are:
- 10 days: DMV Hearing. From the time you are arrested you have only 10 days to file a request for a hearing with the DMV. If you don’t request this hearing, your license will be automatically suspended within 30 days. This is known as “Admin Per Se” license suspension. You can ask your DUI lawyer to complete the request for you, and they can also represent you at the hearing itself.
- 14 days: Arraignment. You’ll have your first court hearing within roughly two weeks of your arrest. The exact scheduling depends on how busy the court is. Your arraignment is a short hearing in front of a judge where you enter your plea—Guilty, Not Guilty or No Contest. However, it’s also your first chance to stand across from the prosecutor in the courtroom. The prosecution is looking to see if you will be an easy conviction or not. If you have a DUI lawyer whose reputation they respect, they’ll know you’re going to make them fight every step of the way. This is often when they start to consider offering a more generous deal or even dropping the case.
- 30 Days: Your Trial. Gardena’s DUI cases are heard at the Torrance Courthouse. You may have 30 to 45 days to prepare. However, in most cases you will not actually have to go to trial. A good DUI lawyer will work to end your case in your favor without facing a jury. They can do this by objecting to key evidence and moving to dismiss the entire case. Or, they may help you work out a deal you’re happy with.
Do You Need a Lawyer for a Gardena DUI?
You are not required to get a DUI lawyer in California. However, a lawyer who works exclusively on DUI can make a huge impact on the outcome of your case. There are dozens of defense tactics that can work in a DUI, but only a few will work in any given case. A good DUI lawyer will know how to choose the right one for you based on your case, the evidence against you, and the specific judge you’ve been assigned.
Tactics a DUI attorney may use include:
- Disputing chemical evidence. Breath tests, blood tests and drug tests are not perfect. Your lawyer knows how to spot breaches of testing procedure and may be able to get the test results thrown out.
- Protecting your rights. Police often break protocol when choosing who to pull over, or when arresting and questioning a suspect. These violations are usually an accident, but they have serious repercussions. Your lawyer may be able to get key evidence excluded if your rights were violated.
- Negotiation. Prosecutors are busy and DUI cases are rarely their top priority. Your lawyer may simply be able to drive a hard bargain at the negotiation table and get the prosecutor to offer you a way out.
Speak to a Gardena DUI Lawyer for Free
We can connect you with an experienced DUI lawyer for FREE. We work only with top lawyers who focus their entire practice on DUI’s. Your lawyer will give you a free consultation and help you understand your legal options, so you can decide for yourself how best to proceed with your case.
A DUI is a serious criminal charge. Don’t face it without legal guidance. Fill out the form to the right or call (310) 862-0199 and get your FREE consultation toda