Get a DUI Attorney Near Me
Facing a DUI charge in Pico Rivera is hard. Prosecutors aim for the heaviest sentence possible, which can include jail time, a suspended driver’s license, mandatory traffic safety classes, and thousands of dollars in fines. If you’ve been arrested on a DUI charge, you need to fight it.
The best way to do that is with the help of a Pico Rivera DUI lawyer. Your DUI lawyer will help you navigate the complex legal system, and will pressure the prosecutor to offer you a way out. They may even be able to win your case without going to trial.
How Much Does a DUI Cost in Pico Rivera?
Getting a DUI is no longer cheap. Fines and fees have risen statewide, and the City of Pico Rivera views DUI arrests as a source of revenue. The Sheriff’s office routinely conducts DUI checkpoints which can net dozens of people at a time. Each driver arrested can end up paying over $15,000 in penalties.
Fines are not the only penalty you face. California state law sets DUI sentences based on how many previous DUI’s you have on your record. Even for a first offense, however, they are not lenient. The penalties for a first DUI include:
- Jail time. The minimum jail sentence for a first DUI is two days. It can be up to six months, at the discretion of the judge. This is based on how intoxicated you were and whether you hurt anyone or caused damage, among other things.
- Losing your license. You cannot keep your license after a DUI conviction. It will be suspended for at least several months, and up to a year.
- DUI School/Alcohol Treatment. All DUI convicts in California are ordered into an education or treatment program of some kind. For a first offense it is typically a three month traffic safety class. You pay for the class out of pocket.
- Fines and fees. DUI’s come with not only the official fine, but also a slew of special “fees” paid to the court. The lowest you will pay for a first DUI is about $1,800. It can be far more.
If you have prior DUI’s in the past 10 years, the penalties you face will be higher. Jail time can be up to a year, fines go into the tens of thousands of dollars, and you could lose your license for years. In some cases you could be sentenced to 16 months of state prison time or even tried as a felon. This is why it’s so important to face your DUI case head on and do everything you can to defend yourself.
Three Crucial Deadlines in Your DUI Case
Every DUI case starts differently. In Pico Rivera you may have been arrested by the county Sheriff or the state police out of the Santa Fe office. You will usually be booked in Pico Rivera Sheriff station. After the initial processing, however, every DUI case follows a similar path. There are crucial deadlines in every case and you have to be prepared for each one.
The main deadlines in your case include:
- Your hearing with the DMV. If you want to keep your driver’s license until the trial, you have only 10 days to request a hearing. If you miss this step the California DMV will automatically suspend your license. A DUI lawyer can help you file this request properly so that you don’t miss it. They can also represent you at the hearing. Your lawyer will know what the DMV is looking for to believe that you deserve to drive.
- Your arraignment. The arraignment is your first court date. It is not a trial. It’s a short hearing before a judge, where you are asked to plead Guilty or Not Guilty. However, the arraignment is also your first chance to stand in court against the prosecutor. They will be eyeing you to see if you will be easy to convict. If you have a lawyer whose reputation they respect, they will be worried. They will start thinking about offering you a deal—usually a better one than what they offered you initially. The arraignment is normally only 14 days or less from your arrest, and you should have a lawyer before this date.
- Your trial date. Your trial will most likely be scheduled at the Downey Courthouse. But in most cases, you will never actually have to go to trial. Your DUI lawyer will work to resolve your case in your favor, before the trial ever happens.
Does Having a DUI Attorney Make a Difference?
The single best thing you can do for your case is to hire a DUI lawyer with a strong reputation. Your lawyer does more than just file papers and speak to the judge. They are trained in the techniques that turn around DUI cases. For example:
- Challenging the validity of the breath test/blood test and having the results thrown out.
- Questioning the arresting officer in a way that shows their biases, assumptions or errors.
- Investigating whether your rights were violated in any way, and proving it to the court.
- Negotiating with the prosecutor.
This last one may be the single most important skill a DUI lawyer brings. Prosecutors do not want to fight every DUI case. If it’s not an easy conviction, they have bigger cases to pursue—and they are willing to bargain. In some cases your lawyer may be able to get your charge reduced to something less than DUI, or dropped entirely.
Speak to a Pico Rivera DUI Lawyer for Free
There are many ways a lawyer can tackle your case. All of them require acting fast. Legal deadlines come quickly and a good defense requires careful, knowledgeable legal work. We can connect you to a lawyer who has the right skills for your case—and we charge absolutely nothing.
Our site exists to help drivers like you get help from the most experienced DUI Lawyers in the Pico Rivera area. Every lawyer we work with offers a 100% FREE case evaluation. This is your chance to learn how they would approach your case and what your odds are.
Don’t wait until it’s too late. Fill out the form to the right or call (310) 862-0199 and get your free consultation today.