DUI Penalties in California

Call Our Experienced Pasadena DUI Defense Attorney Now

Contrary to popular belief, a DUI conviction in California does not result in a "slap on the wrist." Defendants are continually dismayed to realize that their conviction will come with significant penalties that will highly disrupt their life. This is why it is critical to retain experienced defense counsel with a formidable grasp on the DUI practice area.

At The Law Offices of Paul S. Geller, our Pasadena DUI defense lawyer is a former Los Angeles prosecutor with nearly 20 years of experience in our criminal justice system. Beyond that, Mr. Geller has also completed specialized DUI law training and has forged himself a reputation for providing dedicated and assertive advocacy for his clients.

We're ready to help minimize the impact your DUI charge has on your life. Contact us today to request a free case evaluation.

"What Penalties Do I Face?"

Despite the fact that there are alternatives to DUI charges and these cases are often reduced or dismissed, California statutes provided numerous penalties for drivers convicted of DUI. Note that the below information is just a summary, every DUI case is unique, and that these laws are constantly being rewritten by legislators.

DUI penalties in California can include:

First Offense DUI

  • 36 – 60 months of probation
  • up to 6 months in jail
  • a fine of up to $1000, plus assessments
  • a first offender 3-month alcohol class
  • Ignition interlock device (in some counties)

Second Offense within 10 Years of a Prior DUI Conviction

  • 36 – 60 months of probation
  • up to 1 (one) year in jail (minimum 96 hours jail, 48 hours continuous)
  • a fine of up to $1000, plus assessments
  • a second offender alcohol program, typically 18 months

Third Offense within 10 Years of Two Prior DUI Convictions

  • 36 – 60 months of probation
  • up to 1 (one) year in jail (minimum 120 days)
  • Fines of up to $1000, plus assessments
  • Multiple DUI offender alcohol program, either 18 or 30 months

Felony DUI Offenses or Felony DUI with Injuries

  • Same terms as above
  • If no probation, custody in state prison of up to 3 (three years)
  • Fines up to $10,000, plus assessments

DUI Penalty Enhancements

In some cases, prosecutors may seek more serious penalties against the accused if they believe their DUI offense was particularly egregious. These harsher penalties are called "enhancements."

Enhancements can play a role in DUI cases including:

  • If over a .15 BAC (blood alcohol content) – a 6 or 9-month alcohol class.
  • If a .20 BAC or higher or a refusal to provide a chemical test, a 9-month alcohol program.
  • Hospital and Morgue Program (commonly referred to as HAM)
  • Mothers Against Drunk Driving VIP classes
  • Community Service/Cal Trans

If there are injuries, and “great bodily injury” or “multiple victims," additional penalties may also apply:

  • State prison
  • Ignition Interlock Requirements with Multiple Offenders
  • Revocation or Suspension of Driving Privileges Once DMV receives “Abstract” of conviction
  • Community Service
  • Cal Trans/City Work
  • Weekend Jail
  • House Arrest
  • Additional Alcohol Anonymous Meetings
  • Inpatient/Outpatient Alcohol Treatment
  • Potential Treatment as a “Serious Offense” within California Three Strikes Laws

Pasadena DUI Defense Lawyer You Can Trust

There are many things that need to be done to accurately, thoroughly and aggressively defend someone in a DUI case (such as checking the accuracy of the breath testing machines used, retesting the blood sample if one was provided, examining the police officer’s radio transmissions to test the accuracy of their reports, visiting the scene or checking maps of the arrest location, and more), and our office will do all that we can while we fight for your rights.

Do not just plead guilty to “get it over with”. You have rights—and we are ready to help protect them. Call (626) 784-4143 today.

Our Clients Are Our
Best Advertisement

See What They Have to Say!

  • Highly recommended! If you are looking for an attorney who knows the law, is well connected, and will put his experience behind your case- Paul Geller is the attorney for you. He is very familiar with all kinds of criminal cases and has worked all over the Los Angeles area and beyond. He clearly cares about making the best case for each and every one of his clients. Highly recommended!

    - Anonymous

  • Paul Geller is Amazing! Paul Geller is Amazing! Don't waste your time calling anyone else. He listened to me, and then solved my problem in a couple of hours! The next day I had documentation from the DA's office that they would not pursue my case. I've had bad experiences with attorneys in the past, but Paul Geller restores my faith in our justice system. He knows the law. He knows your rights. He cares about you, and will take care of you quickly!

    - Anonymous

  • Call Paul Geller!! Do not waste your time with a public defender.. Call Paul Geller!! I had a great experience with this law firm.. I felt confident every time I walked into court. I had gotten arrested for felony.... Paul got my charges dismissed!! !!!! The man is simply amazing. Trust me... I keep his card in my walnut for a "just in case" situation. Dui, Domestic Violence, anything.. the man knows what he is doing and he will go the mile for you...plus he has a professional office full of office pretty professionals that make you feel comfortable and relaxed...and his prices are pretty fair...... Trust me I hired him for one of my cases and now I’m totally free and clear of any thing....Thanks Paul..

    - Anonymous

  • Paul Geller is a very hardworking and dedicated defense attorney Paul Geller is a very hardworking and dedicated defense attorney, and I would recommend him to anyone I know. I was extremely happy with his work and professionalism. He is very trustworthy and treats you with respect. He really puts a lot of time into researching your case and is very knowledgeable! This was my first time in need of an attorney and he made me feel very comfortable and relaxed, as I knew I could trust him and he would do everything he could to help me out. A friend referred me to Paul and after my experience I would definitely do the same! Thanks Paul for everything you did for me!

    - Anonymous

  • He is great! He is great! Gets back to quick and explains things to easily so you can understand!

    - Anonymous

  • One of the most knowledgeable and aggressive lawyers I’ve ever met. Paul is one of the most knowledgeable and aggressive lawyers I’ve ever met. He got my drug possession for sale case thrown out, and the DA tried to charge me again. He got it thrown out a second time. Unbelievable. Thanks Paul.

    - Jason

Prev Next

Ready to Defend Your Rights & Protect Your Freedom

    • Please enter your name.
    • This isn't a valid phone number.
      Please enter your phone number.
    • This isn't a valid email address.
      Please enter your email address.
    • Please make a selection.
    • Please enter a message.
Request a Free Consultation