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Santa Rosa DUI Attorney


Santa Rosa DUI Lawyer 

DUI Attorney serving Sonoma, NApa, and Mendocino Counties.

Driving under the influence (DUI) is one of the most common criminal charges for drivers in Santa Rosa and Sonoma County. It is also the first time many people find themselves under arrest and dealing with the criminal court system. With so many questions after a criminal arrest, drivers should turn to experienced Santa Rosa DUI lawyers.

Wilber Law Offices, P.C. can explain the process and help you fight to keep criminal charges off your record. Our Santa Rosa DUI attorneys understand the complexities of the legal system and can help you navigate the process. We will also provide you with the information and resources you need to understand the laws and regulations related to DUI cases.

Types of California DUI Charges

There are a number of California DUI charges, depending on the number of prior offenses, age of the driver, and whether anyone was injured or killed in a drunk driving accident. DUI charges in California can include:

How Long Does a DUI Case Take in California?

The timeline for a DUI case in California can vary greatly depending on the circumstances. Generally, a DUI case can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months to resolve. The length of the case will depend on the complexity of the case, the court's schedule, whether any enhancements and any other factors that may come into play.

Why Is My DUI Case Taking So Long?

DUI cases can take a long time to resolve because of the complexity of the legal process. Depending on the jurisdiction, there may be a lengthy investigation process, and the court may need to gather evidence from witnesses, law enforcement, and other sources. Additionally, the court may need to review evidence and make a determination of guilt or innocence, which can take some time.

How Long Can a DUI Case Stay Open?

The length of time a DUI case can stay open varies by state, but typically the statute of limitations is between two and five years. In some cases, if the DUI is a felony, the statute of limitations can be up to seven years.

DUI Penalties in California

DUI penalties depend on the type of criminal charge, the defendant’s criminal record, whether any enhancing factors are present in the case, and what steps need to be taken to get a driver’s license reinstated. Criminal penalties include fines and possible jail time. Administrative penalties include the DMV suspending a driver’s license and imposing conditions before the individual can get driving privileges reinstated.  

Potential penalties and consequences of a California DUI may include:

Is a DUI a Misdemeanor or Felony in CA?

The classification of a DUI (Driving Under the Influence) as a felony or misdemeanor in California varies depending on the jurisdiction and the specific circumstances. In the United States, a DUI is typically considered a misdemeanor for a first or second offense.

 However, it can be charged as a felony in certain situations, such as:

  • Multiple DUI convictions: In some states, if an individual has a  fourth or subsequent DUI offense within a 10-year period.
  • Aggravating factors: If there are aggravating factors involved, such as causing serious injury or death while driving under the influence, it can lead to felony DUI charges.
  • Child endangerment: If a person is arrested for DUI with a child in the vehicle, this can lead to felony charges in some states.
  • Previous felony DUI convictions: If someone has a prior felony DUI conviction on their record, subsequent DUI offenses may also be charged as felonies.

It's essential to consult the specific laws and regulations of your jurisdiction to understand how DUI offenses are classified and punished. An experienced drunk driving attorney from Wilber Law Offices, P.C can help you understand your rights and options today! 

Arrested for a DUI in Santa Rosa, CA?

The arrest process can be confusing, especially when someone has never been involved in the criminal courts before. Many drivers do not know their rights when the police pull them over and that they can refuse roadside breath tests and field sobriety tests. 

Questions drivers have involving the traffic stop and arrest process in California DUIs include:

DUI in Santa Rosa and Sonoma County

After an arrest for drunk driving, individuals may be left unsure what to do next. From getting released from jail to fighting to keep the driver’s license, it can save drivers a lot of time and hassle to contact an experienced Santa Rosa DUI defense lawyer to explain the process and help prepare them to fight back against a criminal conviction.

Do I Need DUI Defense Attorney?

Finding the right criminal DUI lawyer for your case is crucial because the outcome of your case can significantly impact your future. A skilled criminal defense lawyer with experience in California laws and a deep understanding of the intricacies of DUI defense law can devise a defense strategy that could minimize penalties, or in some cases, have the charges dropped altogether. It's not just about legal representation; it's about protecting your rights, your license, and your future. The right attorney can make a substantial difference in the resolution of your case by navigating the complexities of the legal system, negotiating with prosecutors, and presenting your case in the best possible light.

Steps to Find the Right DUI Defense Lawyer for Your Case:

  1. Research: Start by searching for DUI attorneys in Santa Rosa. Use online legal directories and review sites to create a list of potential lawyers.
  2. Experience in the Correct Field: Look for lawyers who have specific experience in DUI defense law and have extensive experience handling cases similar to yours. Confirm that they have a strong track record in DUI cases.
  3. Consultations: Contact the attorneys on your list to schedule consultations. Most DUI defense attorneys offer free initial consultations to discuss your case.
  4. Questions: Prepare a list of questions to ask during your consultations, including questions about the attorney's experience, defense strategies they might use in your case, and their fee structure.
  5. Assess Communication: Choose an attorney with whom you feel comfortable communicating. Effective communication is key to a successful attorney-client relationship.
  6. Review and Compare: After your consultations, review the information you've gathered about each DUI attorney's experience, strategy, and fees. Consider their reputations in the Santa Rosa legal community.
  7. Decision: Select the DUI defense lawyer who you believe will best represent your interests and vigorously defend your case.
  8. Engagement: Once you've chosen your DUI attorney in Santa Rosa, ensure you understand the terms of your engagement, including fees and the scope of their representation.

By following these steps meticulously, you will significantly improve your chances of finding a DUI defense attorney who can effectively represent you, ensuring the best possible outcome for your situation.

What Does a DUI Defense Attorney Do?

A Santa Rosa DUI lawyer defends individuals charged with driving under the influence (DUI). They are dedicated to navigating the complexities of DUI laws to provide their clients with a robust defense. They understand the stress and uncertainty that comes with DUI charges and work tirelessly to protect their clients' rights, exploring every legal avenue to potentially reduce or dismiss the charges. Armed with a profound knowledge of both the law and local court procedures, our Santa Rosa DUI attorneys are invaluable allies during what can be one of the most challenging times in a person's life.

Services Provided by our Santa Rosa DUI Lawyers Include:

  • Case Evaluation: Comprehensive review of the DUI case to identify strengths, weaknesses, and potential defenses.
  • Legal Guidance: Providing clarification on the legal process, potential outcomes, and guiding clients through complex legal terminologies and proceedings.
  • Representation in Court: Acting on the client's behalf in all court appearances, ensuring their rights are upheld throughout the process.
  • Plea Bargaining: Negotiating with prosecutors to reduce charges or penalties, including attempting to convert California DUI charges to lesser offenses, where applicable.
  • DMV Hearings: Representing clients in DMV hearings to contest and potentially prevent driver's license suspension.
  • Evidence Analysis: Scrutinizing the evidence presented by the prosecution for any inconsistencies or violations of rights that could benefit the defense.
  • Expert Witnesses: Utilizing professional relationships with forensic scientists, toxicologists, and other experts who can provide testimony or evidence favorable to the defense.
  • Legal Motions: Filing motions to suppress evidence, dismiss charges, or request other judicial interventions advantageous to the client.
  • Post-Conviction Support: Assisting with license reinstatement procedures, advocating for alternative sentencing options, and providing guidance on how to satisfy court-ordered requirements efficiently.

Santa Rosa DUI lawyers offer a comprehensive suite of services designed to meet the unique needs of each client. Their goal is not only to achieve the best possible outcome in the courtroom but also to support individuals through every step of the legal process, minimizing the impact of DUI charges on their lives.

The criminal court process is different in each county in California and each courthouse may have unique court rules. Our Santa Rosa criminal defense attorneys understand the process, know the judges and prosecutors, and can make the difficult process as painless as possible. Contacting the right Santa Rosa criminal defense law firm as soon as possible should be the first step to take.

Contact Santa Rosa DUI Defense Lawyers

Experience counts when finding the right team of attorneys to deal with the state and prosecutors. If you are being pressured into pleading guilty, before you waive your rights, contact DUI defense lawyers who will fight for you. Call the Santa Rosa DUI defense team at Wilber Law Offices as soon as possible after your arrest to ensure all of your rights are protected and all possible avenues of defense are traveled.

Contact the Santa Rosa DUI attorneys at Wilber Law Offices today for a FREE consultation at (707) 986-4482

California DUI FAQ

Can I refuse a DUI test in California?

Under California’s implied consent law, by driving in the state, you agree to submit to chemical testing if lawfully arrested for DUI. Refusing a chemical test can result in harsher penalties, including a one-year license suspension for the first refusal and longer suspensions for subsequent refusals.

What are the penalties for a first-time DUI in California?

Penalties for a first-time DUI in California can include:

  • Fines ranging from $390 to $1,000
  • A 4-month driver’s license suspension
  • Up to 6 months in county jail
  • DUI probation for 3 to 5 years
  • DUI school (ranging from 3 to 9 months)
  • Installation of an ignition interlock device (IID) for up to 6 months

What happens if I get a second DUI in California?

A second DUI offense in California typically results in:

  • Fines between $390 and $1,000
  • A 2-year driver’s license suspension
  • 96 hours to 1 year in county jail
  • DUI probation for 3 to 5 years
  • DUI school (18 to 30 months)
  • Installation of an IID for up to 1 year

How long does a DUI stay on my record in California?

A DUI conviction stays on your driving record for 10 years in California. This means that if you are convicted of another DUI within that period, it will be treated as a subsequent offense with increased penalties.

Can a DUI be expunged in California?

You can petition for a DUI expungement in California after completing probation. If granted, the conviction is dismissed, but it does not erase the DUI from your driving record or remove points from your license. Expungement can, however, help with employment prospects.

What is a "wet reckless" charge?

A "wet reckless" is a plea bargain in which a DUI charge is reduced to reckless driving involving alcohol. This charge carries lesser penalties than a DUI but still counts as a prior offense if you are charged with DUI again within 10 years.

Do I need a lawyer for a DUI in California?

While you can represent yourself, hiring an experienced DUI lawyer is highly recommended. An attorney can help navigate the legal system, challenge evidence, negotiate plea deals, and potentially reduce charges or penalties.

What is the role of the DMV in a DUI case?

The California DMV handles administrative actions against your driver’s license, separate from the criminal court process. After a DUI arrest, you have 10 days to request a DMV hearing to contest your license suspension. The DMV can suspend your license even if the criminal charges are reduced or dismissed.

Can I get a restricted license after a DUI in California?

Yes, after a DUI suspension, you may be eligible for a restricted license allowing you to drive to work, school, and DUI program classes. You must enroll in a DUI program and may need to install an IID in your vehicle to qualify.

What are the consequences of DUI involving drugs in California?

DUI involving drugs (DUID) carries similar penalties to alcohol-related DUI offenses, including fines, license suspension, jail time, probation, and mandatory DUI education programs. The prosecution must prove that the drug impaired your ability to drive safely.

Wilber Law Offices Santa Rosa DUI Attorneys service Sonoma, Napa, and Mendocino Counties and surrounding areas.

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