What can I do for a first time DUI? 10 Answers as of February 24, 2012

My son, age 33, just got his first dui. There was no property damage and he cooperated fully. It was .08. He works but may not be able to afford an attorney. If he qualifies for a pd, what can he expect at trial?

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The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
Talk to an attorney who regularly handles DUI cases. [ not one who has an 800 number]. There are some important fact issues specific to each case. If funds are an issue, you might seek a limited time consultation with an attorney through your local county bar association's referral service.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/4/2011
The Law Offices of Michael S. Berg
The Law Offices of Michael S. Berg | Michael Berg
in California, there will be a fine (roughly $2,000.00), a one hour Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) lecture and a 3 month alcohol program. However, due to the fact that he has a very low blood alcohol level, there is a good possibility of either beating the case or receiving a reduced charge, such as reckless driving. Good luck!
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/4/2011
Law Office of Jeff Yeh
Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
A PD is not a good idea for DUI cases. For one, they are not allowed and will not represent your son at the DMV Hearing, which is separate from the court case and can be just as if not more important (and requires timely action, 10 days to be precise). On a borderline case like this, reductions can likely be obtained by an experienced DUI specialist. Also, a re-analysis of the blood may show that it was actually lower than a 0.08, thus giving your son to win the DMV Hearing and keep his license.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/1/2011
Nelson & Lawless
Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
At trial? Probable loss unless he has really strong defenses. These are generally settled by plea bargain to avoid the risk and huge expense of trial. If serious about getting private counsel on a realistic basis, feel free to contact me.
A little free advice:

Keep in mind: When you are arrested for DUI, whether alcohol or drugs, upon release from jail or booking you were given documents that included a notice that you have only ten days to file a request with DMV for a hearing on an appeal of the automatic one-year suspension of your license imposed by DMV upon arrest for DUI, which is separate and runs consecutively with any suspension that may be imposed by the court. Contact DMV and do so, timely, then appear at your scheduled hearing and present your evidence and testimony. If you don't know how to do these things, then hire an attorney that does. If serious about hiring counsel, feel free to contact me.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/1/2011
Law Office of Tracey S. Sang
Law Office of Tracey S. Sang | Tracey Sang
Most cases do not go to trial. In San Diego, the penalty for a first time DUI is just a fine of $1K and the three-month class.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/1/2011
    The Law Offices of Robert L. Driessen
    The Law Offices of Robert L. Driessen | Robert L. Driessen
    First make sure he schedules a DMV hearing from the DMV within 10 days of the arrest. The Public Defender will not assist him with the DMV aspect of the case. I am not sure what you mean by "what can he expect for trial". The best thing to do is to at least have a free consultation with a private DUI attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/1/2011
    Robert Mortland
    Robert Mortland | Law Office of Robert Mortland
    He will not be going to trial right away. Your first appearance is the arraignment. This is where you will be told what you are being charged with. With a PD, you may be able to get the charge down to a wet reckless but the DA might also ask for a standard first DUI.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/1/2011
    Law Offices of Phil Hache
    Law Offices of Phil Hache | Phil Hache
    If his BAC was a .08, particularly if there was no accident involved, there is a good chance that a DUI attorney can get the DUI charge dismissed, and potentially reduced to a lesser charge without having to go to trial (this would generally happen during pre-trial negotiations). I regularly get these results under similar circumstances (see www.1DUILawyer.com for some results of prior cases). If he goes the Public defender route, he will have to be present for every hearing. If he hires a private attorney, then most likely, he will not need to be at the pre-trial hearings. Also, note that if he qualifies for the PD, he may still have to pay for those services depending on the jurisdiction the court is in, and your sons financial status. Further, your son will have to get a DMV hearing so that the DMV does not move forward with an automatic license suspension based on a .08 or higher Blood alcohol level. Feel free to call me or refer to my website if you have further questions or want to speak about the case in more detail.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/1/2011
    Law Office of Michael Bialys THE DUI MAN
    Law Office of Michael Bialys THE DUI MAN | Michael Bialys
    At a .08 he should be able to get the charge lowered to something like a wet reckless. He still however, has to deal with the DMV and his suspension and in the regard he doesn't get a PD. Something to consider.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/24/2012
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