Get a DUI Attorney Near Me
If you were arrested for DUI in Hawthorne, CA you face a difficult road. DUI is treated very harshly in Hawthorne, with penalties that include jail time, huge fines, and the loss of your driver’s license. It is imperative that you fight this charge every step of the way.
The assistance of a good Hawthorne DUI lawyer can be invaluable. DUI lawyers understand the court system, and they know how to handle the evidence in your case. They routinely take even the toughest drunk driving cases and get the charges reduced or dropped, or even win the case. The right lawyer can save you thousands of dollars.
DUI Penalties in Hawthorne
Hawthorne has cracked down on DUI in recent years. This is not purely out of a concern for public safety. Fines and fees for DUI have spiraled up, and DUI cases are profitable for local government—to the tune of tens of thousands of dollars per case. It’s no surprise then that the city has stepped up enforcement, holding DUI checkpoints to catch as many drivers as possible.
This also means that the courts show little mercy to accused drunk drivers. The penalties you face are set by state law, and they depend on whether you have previous DUI’s on your record. There are separate sets of penalties for first time, second time, and third time (or more) offenders.
Let’s look at the penalties for a simple first time DUI. They include:
- Jail time. Most DUI convictions include jail time. It can be as little as two days or as much as six months for a first offense.
- Fines and fees. The minimum cost of a first time DUI is $1,800. That includes the fine and special court fees. It can be far, far more expensive than this.
- DUI school. You will have to enroll in a court-ordered DUI program that costs an additional $500.
- No more driving. You will lose your license for at least four months and often up to a year.
This is truly the tip of the iceberg. Any complicating factors, such as refusing the breath test, causing an accident, or having children in the car, will increase the penalties further. And repeat offenders face far stricter consequences: time in state prison, years with no driving, and fines and fees that go over $10,000.
What Happens after your DUI Arrest in Hawthorne
Hawthorne streets are policed by several organizations, including the local police, the County Sheriff, and the West Los Angeles division of the State Highway Patrol. Regardless of who arrested you, in most cases you will be processed at the Hawthorne Police jail facility. You will typically be held overnight and need to post bail to be released.
Being released is only the beginning of the legal road before you. A typical California DUI case will last for several months. And there are several distinct deadlines that will determine your case and your future. For each of these deadlines, it’s important to have the best legal counsel available. You have one and only one chance at each point.
These deadlines include:
- The DMV hearing. You have only 10 days from your arrest to request a hearing with the DMV. If you miss this deadline you will lose your license! The DMV automatically suspends the license of anyone arrested for DUI, before their trial is even over. The hearing can be in person or over the phone. The best way to approach it is to ask your DUI lawyer to handle the hearing for you. They will know what to say to improve your chances of keeping your license.
- The arraignment. Within a few weeks of your arrest you will have a court hearing called an arraignment. This is not a trial, but it is very important to your case. This hearing is when you enter a plea of Guilty or Not Guilty. You should already have a DUI lawyer before this hearing. Your lawyer will do a lot more than just advise you on the plea. They will also show the prosecutor that you will not be easy to convict and that every scrap of evidence will be examined and cross-examined. In many cases this is all it takes for the prosecutor to offer you a better deal.
- Your trial. Hawthorne DUI cases are often heard at the Airport Courthouse. Normally the trial is scheduled at least a month after the arraignment, often more. But you may not have to go to trial at all. Your DUI attorney will use the time before the trial to assemble a strong case in your defense. They will bargain hard with the prosecutor to get you an outcome you’re happy with—without ever standing in front of a jury.
Does a Drunk Driving Lawyer Improve Your Odds in Hawthorne?
If you’ve been arrested for DUI, hiring a DUI attorney may be the single best move you make. DUI lawyers spend years learning which tactics work in the courtroom and which don’t. They develop their reputation with judges and prosecutors so that they—and their clients—are taken seriously. They know how to turn around even the toughest DUI cases.
Some of the ways your lawyer can help you include:
- Throwing out breath test/blood test results. If there is any irregularity in how the test was performed, they can file a motion to exclude this evidence.
- Challenging the arresting officer. Police officers are capable of bias, errors and simple mistakes. If there are inconsistencies in their testimony your lawyer will find them.
- Protecting your rights. If your rights were violated in any way during the arrest, it may mean that key evidence against you can be tossed out.
- Prosecutors are busy and don’t want to fight tooth and nail over a simple DUI case. If your lawyer builds a strong case, they may be able to persuade the prosecutor to simply drop it.
No DUI lawyer can promise a victory. But they have reliable, time-tested methods to improve your odds. They may help you get a light sentence, a reduced charge, or even get the DUI charge dropped entirely. You may walk away found Not Guilty of all charges.
Talk to an Experienced DUI Attorney for Free
You deserve the best possible defense in your DUI cast. We’re here to help you get it. We help drivers like you get matched with top Hawthorne area DUI attorneys—for free. Every attorney we work with focuses their practice on DUI and has the experience to handle your case. And every one of them offers a FREE case evaluation. That means you can find out what you need to know about your case, and make an informed decision on how to proceed.
Remember, the deadlines in your case are looming. The sooner you speak to a lawyer, the more they can do for you. Fill out the form to the right or call (310) 862-0199 and get your FREE consultation today.