Drivers often wonder if California has a “zero tolerance” law for driving under the influence (DUI). Our state does have a zero-tolerance law that applies to drivers under the age of 21. These drivers are not allowed to operate a vehicle with any amount of alcohol in their system.
Vehicle Code (VEH) §23136 acts as California’s zero-tolerance law for DUIs. Drivers found guilty of a VEH §23136 violation can face the suspension of their driver’s license. Other penalties sometimes apply to under 21 DUIs. Find out more with this article.
Learn More About California’s Zero Tolerance DUI Law
As we mentioned, VEH §23136 deals with the zero-tolerance law for DUIs in Los Angeles. Drivers can face VEH §23136 charges if they are:
- Under 21 with
- A blood alcohol content (BAC) at or above 0.01%
Generally, a single alcoholic beverage can raise a driver’s BAC to 0.01%. This means that taking even one drink of alcohol before driving could lead to a VEH §23136 violation in our state. Drivers convicted under VEH §23136 face a one-year license suspension.
Measuring BAC for Zero Tolerance DUI Arrests in California
Drivers with an elevated BAC level face charges under VEH §23136 in California. You may wonder how police officers measure BAC in these cases. Police officers often perform a preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) test. Many officers use breathalyzers to perform these tests.
You should know that drivers under 21 give “implied consent” to all PAS tests. This means that drivers have to take the test or they risk further legal repercussions. Refusal to take a legally ordered PAS test can lead to the suspension of your driver’s license.
Drivers over 21 can sometimes refuse a PAS test. However, they must comply with any BAC testing if they are:
- On DUI probation
- Legally arrested
Many drivers worry if they “fail” a BAC test during a DUI stop. However, a failure does not necessarily mean you will face a conviction. Find out more about handling BAC test results by contacting a Los Angeles DUI lawyer right now. Call us at (310) 896-2724 so we can review your charges.
Additional DUI Charges for Drivers Under 21
VEH §23136 represents California’s zero-tolerance law for under 21 DUIs. However, it is not the only DUI charge used to prosecute drivers under the age of 21. The court also uses charges like:
- VEH §23140: Under 21 DUI with a BAC of 0.05% or Higher
- VEH §23152(a): Driving Under the Influence
VEH §23140 is another charge specifically used for drivers under the age of 21. Drivers can face this charge if their BAC is well above 0.01%. VEH §23140 convictions can lead to fines, required entry into an alcohol treatment program, and license suspensions.
VEH §23152(a) is the “adult” charge for DUIs in California. However, drivers under the age of 21 can still face VEH §23152(a) accusations. Generally, these charges apply if the driver has a BAC at or above 0.08%. VEH §23152(a) is handled more harshly than California’s under 21 charges. A VEH §23152(a) conviction can lead to:
- Time in an alcohol treatment program
- Jail time
- A driver’s license suspension
However, you should know that drivers over the age of 21 sometimes avoid a license suspension in California. These drivers can agree to install an ignition interlock device (IID) on their vehicle. The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) can then issue the driver an IID restricted license. Drivers under 21 are not eligible for this kind of license at this time.
Handle Zero Tolerance DUI Charges in California
You can get help handling a VEH §23136 charge with a DUI lawyer in Los Angeles. One of our team members can get to work on your defense right away. We can dispute the accuracy of any BAC tests that you took.
Our team can also focus on showing that you were stopped without reasonable cause. We’ll focus on getting your charges dismissed. Allow us to handle all legal hurdles you face after a zero-tolerance arrest here in California. We’re ready to put you first right now.
Find Out How California’s Zero Tolerance DUI Law Applies to Your Case
California does have a zero-tolerance law for DUIs. This law applies to drivers under the age of 21 who drive under the influence of alcohol. Penalties can lead to a driver’s license suspension. Get help handling these charges by contacting a Los Angeles DUI lawyer right away. Our team can help if you call us at (310) 896-2724. You can also fill out our online contact form.
We’re ready to help you take on DUI charges. Reach out for a free consultation right now.