Millions of people depend on their vehicles daily, whether it’s for business or pleasure. That’s why they book regular car services and seek ways to make their weekend getaways worthwhile. If you’re unfortunately arrested for DUI in California, it’s important to know what to do. Many people make the mistake of trying to handle things on their own, but this can often lead to more trouble. In this article, we’ll discuss the steps you need to take after being arrested, and how an experienced DUI lawyer can help you.
Contact A Lawyer As Soon As Possible
Following an arrest for DUI, the first thing you need to do is contact a lawyer. A DUI attorney will be able to advise you of your legal rights and options, and help you navigate the legal process. In some instances, it may be possible to have the charges against you dropped or reduced – but this is rare. The vast majority of DUI cases end in a conviction, so it’s important to be prepared for this possibility. The consequences of a conviction can be severe, so it’s important to have an experienced legal advocate on your side.
Your lawyer will negotiate with the prosecutor to try and get a lighter sentence. This is especially important if this is your first offense and there were no aggravating factors involved in your arrest (such as high blood alcohol content, an accident, etc.). If you’re wondering How Much Does a DUI Lawyer Cost in California you can find details of the average prices online, and see what factors affect these costs. You can also discover how long DUI cases take, and read about ways to get yours dismissed.
Know When To Speak And When Not To
If you’re arrested on suspicion of DUI, remain silent unless you’re asked a direct question. Don’t make any statements about what occurred, no matter how minor they may seem or how benign the question may be.
It’s important to avoid giving law enforcement officers any reason to believe that you’re impaired. Statements like “I only had a couple of drinks,” or “I thought I was okay to drive,” can and will be used against you in court. If you must say something, ask for a lawyer.
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Cooperate With The Police
This means turning off your music, rolling down your window, and keeping your hands where the officer can see them. If you have any passengers in your car, tell them to stay calm and quiet as well. The more cooperative you are, the less likely it is that you’ll be arrested. The next step is to provide the officer with your driver’s license, registration, and proof of insurance.
The police will probably ask you a few questions, and it’s important that you answer them truthfully. Lying to a police officer is a crime, and it will only make things worse for you in the long run. If the officer asks you to step out of the car, do so calmly and willingly. Next, the officer will probably ask you to take a field sobriety test.
Refuse To Take Any Field Sobriety Tests Or Consent To A Blood Test
If you’re pulled over on suspicion of DUI you should refuse to take any field sobriety tests. They are the roadside tests that officers often ask drivers to perform, such as walking in a straight line or standing on one leg. Although you may think you can pass these tests without any problems, it’s important to understand that they’re designed to be failed. The officer who pulls you over is looking for any excuse to arrest you, so don’t give them one.
You should also refuse consent to a blood test. Although California has an “implied consent” law (which states that all drivers must submit to chemical testing if asked by an officer) this only applies to breath and urine tests. You have the right to refuse a blood test, and you should exercise that right if possible. Blood tests are much more accurate than breath or urine tests, and they can be used to convict you even if you weren’t actually impaired at the time of your arrest. If you consent to a blood test, you’re essentially giving the prosecution all the evidence they need to convict you.
Request A DMV Hearing
If you’re arrested for DUI in California, the arresting officer will confiscate your driver’s license and issue you a pink temporary license. This is called an Administrative Per Se order or APS. The order gives you only ten days to request a DMV hearing. The purpose of this is to give you an opportunity to contest the automatic suspension of your driving privileges. At the hearing, a DMV Hearing Officer will consider evidence and testimony to determine whether or not to suspend your license.
You should request a DMV hearing because it is your best opportunity to avoid having your license suspended. An experienced DUI attorney can help you prepare for and present your case at the hearing. If you don’t request a DMV hearing within ten days of your arrest, your license will be automatically suspended.
Get A Copy Of The Police Report And Take Photos Of The Arrest Scene
By getting a copy of the police report, it will enable you to review the details of your arrest and look for any errors or inconsistencies. The report will also contain important information about the arresting officer and witnesses.
If possible, take photographs of the scene of your arrest, because this may be helpful in identifying any potential problems with the case against you. For example, if there are no skid marks at the scene, this could suggest that you weren’t actually driving recklessly.
Once the arrest has finished, ask a friend or family member to collect you, then discuss the implications of being found guilty with your lawyer. With the right legal advocate, you will have the best possible outcome for your case. You’ll then be able to move on with your life once more.