What effect does a DUI have on my driving record in California?

Beginning January 1, 2007, a new legislation extended the period for reporting DUI offenses from seven to ten years for all those public requesting records, this also includes insurance companies. It means that if you receive a DUI, it will now appear on your driving record and will remain there until 10 years from violation date. So for instance, if you receive a DUI in February 2002, it will now appear on your driving record and remain there until February 2012.

In addition, this new legislation gives insurance companies access to an individual’s driving record in order to determine a customer’s eligibility for a discount for good driving. Due to these upgraded laws, those who have a DUI violation on their record within the last 10 years will not qualify for this discount.

The California Department of Motor Vehicles stated that most violations designated as two points will be visible for ten years from the date the violation occurred. All other traffic violations that resulted in a conviction will be visible up to 3 years from date of violation. Again this is violation date and not the date of the conviction.

The exceptions are violations occurring in a commercial vehicle, which are the basis for an action under Vehicle Code (VC) 15300a, 15300b, 15302, 15304, and 15306, which will be reported for 55 years from the conviction date.

If you are being charged with DUI, you can challenge the charges by requesting a DMV hearing to challenge the suspension of your license and/or by arguing your case in court. If you decide to challenge your DUI charges, or if you need other assistance in coping with these serious criminal charges, you need an experienced California lawyer who can help you to understand your options.

Other Penalties of DUIs

Besides the effects a misdemeanor or felony DUI have on your driving record, you may also face serious criminal penalties after a DUI conviction. Even if it is your first DUI conviction, you can face serious penalties including:

  • Three to five years of informal probation
  • DUI school that may last between three to nine months
  • A fine of up to $2000
  • A license suspension that may last up to six months
  • Possible jail time

The more convictions you have on your record, the more penalties you will face. For example, after a second conviction within ten years of the first conviction, your penalties may increase to:

  • Three to five years of summary probation
  • Minimum jail time of 96 hours, with a maximum sentence of one year in county jail
  • Up to $2,000 in fines
  • DUI school that may last between 18 and 30 months
  • A driver’s license suspension that may last up to two years, although you can request a restricted license after twelve months has passed

If you have been charged with a DUI, you need a knowledgeable San Diego DUI attorney who can help you understand your legal options and fight for the best possible outcome for your case. Don’t delay, contact an attorney as soon as you are charged with this crime.

This information is provided for educational purposes only and does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you need legal advice, please call or fill out the form above for a free, no-obligation consultation.

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