Here are some frequently asked questions that I hear from clients. It will give you some idea of what to expect, but discussing the specifics of your case with an expert San Diego DUI attorney is always a good idea.

Q: What is a DUI?

A: Driving under the influence (DUI) is a criminal offense in which a person operates a motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol or drugs. In California, a person can be charged with a DUI if their blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.08% or higher.

Q: What are the penalties for a DUI in San Diego?

A: The penalties for a DUI in San Diego can vary depending on the circumstances of the case. Generally, a first-time DUI offense can result in a fine of up to $2,000, up to six months in jail, and a six-month driver’s license suspension.

Q: What should I do if I am charged with a DUI?

A: If you are charged with a DUI, it is vital to contact an experienced San Diego DUI attorney as soon as possible. An experienced attorney can help you understand your rights and options and provide you with the best defense.

Q: What should I expect during a DUI trial?

A: During a DUI trial, the prosecution will present evidence to prove that you were driving under the influence. Your attorney will then present evidence to challenge the prosecution’s case. The jury will then decide whether or not you are guilty of the charge.

Q: What is a plea bargain?

A: A plea bargain is an agreement between the prosecution and the defense in which the defendant agrees to plead guilty to a lesser charge in exchange for a reduced sentence.

Q: What is an ignition interlock device?

A: An ignition interlock device is a breathalyzer installed in a vehicle and requires the driver to blow into it before the car starts. If the driver's BAC is above a certain level, the vehicle will not start.

Q: What is an administrative license suspension?

A: An administrative license suspension is a suspension of your driver's license imposed by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) after a DUI arrest. This suspension is separate from any criminal penalties that may be charged.

Q: What is a DMV hearing?

A: A DMV hearing is a hearing that is held to determine whether or not your license should be suspended or revoked. Your attorney can present evidence at the hearing to challenge the suspension or revocation. The DMV hearing is a critical part of the DUI process. If you are charged with a DUI, you only have 10 days before you will have your license revoked. To avoid suspension, we encourage you to contact a San Diego DMV attorney .

Q: What is an SR-22?

A: An SR-22 is a form filed with the DMV to prove that you have the required auto insurance coverage. Drivers who have had their license suspended or revoked due to a DUI must demonstrate adequate auto coverage. Our office can provide a referral.

Q: What is an expungement?

A: An expungement is a legal process in which a criminal conviction is removed from a person's criminal record. Sometimes, a DUI conviction can be expunged if certain conditions are met.


California Department of Motor Vehicles – Driving Under the Influence (DUI) 

Office of United States Attorneys – Plea Bargaining 

Shouse California Law Group – SR22 California – What is it? When do I need it? How do I get one?