Your First Drinking and Driving Offense in San Diego: What You Need to Know

Getting arrested for any criminal offense can be frightening, emotional, and expensive. Getting arrested for a drinking and driving offense may jeopardize your driver’s license, work, and travel options. Many people who are pulled over for drinking and driving offenses have never been arrested before and may never be again. Understanding what your legal rights and responsibilities are before, during, and after an arrest will make it more likely that you can move past this one-time mistake you made. At Ozols Law Firm, we have helped many people get past their first DUI. Call us for a free consultation.

California Drinking and Driving Laws

The California Vehicle Code governs laws pertaining to driving under the influence of either alcohol or drugs in California. These laws are defined in terms of what happens after you are arrested; the things that the prosecutor must show to a judge or jury to get a conviction against you, the amount of alcohol you can legally have in your system, and definitions of words such as “impaired” or “intoxicated.” It is also important to consider the things you should be aware of before an arrest.

You Have Been Pulled Over. You Have Had a Few Drinks. Now What?

In the state of California, you are required by law to submit to chemical testing to ascertain your blood alcohol content when requested by an officer only after that officer determines that he or she has probable cause to arrest you. Probable cause is the criminal standard required to make an arrest. It means “reasonable grounds.” You are not, however, required to make statements that may incriminate you. You are not required to participate in field sobriety tests. If you have been pulled over, you must provide the officer with your license and vehicle registration, but other than that, you have many rights.

If you choose to decline field sobriety tests, make sure you politely decline. Cooperation, understanding, and demeanor are important in these adrenaline-heavy situations. You do not want to say or do anything that can later be used against you. If you are arrested, you will be informed of your constitutional rights. It is best to refrain from making any statements to police, administration, or other personnel until you have contacted an attorney.

You Have Been Charged with a Drunk Driving Offense.

Contacting an attorney immediately is the best way to ensure that your legal rights are protected. Some driving under the influence arrests are made without probable cause, which means that your constitutional rights have been violated. If this is the case, things that you said or did or chemical testing done to ascertain your blood alcohol level may be inadmissible in court. This may lead to an acquittal or even a dismissal of charges. If you are ultimately convicted of the crime, you will likely have probationary periods that place limitations on your license, curfews, or require you to submit to alcohol testing. In order to minimize the negative consequences of the arrest on your life, compliance with all court orders should be your top priority.

San Diego Drunk Driving Attorney

An experienced criminal defense attorney can help you navigate your driving under the influence charges and ensure the best possible outcome given your unique situation. Regardless of whether this is your first or fourth DUI charge, the Ozols Law Firm has the knowledge to help you with your case. San Diego lawyer Alex Ozols will advocate tirelessly on your behalf to ensure that your legal rights are protected from the moment you contact him. Contact his San Diego office for a consultation today.

Ozols Law Firm
8880 Rio San Diego Dr #22
San Diego, CA 92108
(619) 288-8357