Driving under the influence (DUI) is one of the most common criminal charges filed in California. It is strikingly common for otherwise law-abiding, conscientious people to find themselves in police custody after a dinner out or a night on the town. Understand that if you’ve been charged with a DUI offense, our firm will make sure that you’re not treated as simply “another case number” and often, you will never have to stand in front of a judge. By raising a strong defense and creating a mitigation packet of documents that explain who you are and why this situation is not all that you are, we’ll work hard to protect your rights and your dignity as you move forward.
If you are facing a DUI charge, whether it is your first or your fifth, you’re likely worried about the effects that a conviction could have on your freedom and your future. At Lamano Law Office, our Alameda DUI attorneys understand the kind of stress that you’re under and we’re here to help. We can provide you with the compassionate, experienced legal advocacy that you deserve and the knowledgeable guidance you’ll need to fight for the best outcome possible. We’ll use a 150-point inspection list to explore all the possible defenses in your case. Reach out to our firm today to schedule a no-obligation case evaluation to learn more about your rights and our approach to representation.
Why Do You Need a Lawyer for a DUI Case in Alameda?
If you have been charged with “Driving Under the Influence” in Alameda or anywhere in the East Bay, you shouldn’t have to face the criminal justice system on your own. You deserve legal representation that understands what you’re facing and is as committed to securing a positive outcome to your case as you are. Let the attorneys of Lamano Law Office assist you by:
- Reviewing police records to determine whether the facts support challenging your arrest
- Independently investigating all aspects of your case, including recovery of any police dash cam videos, body-worn cameras, and documentation that may call breath or blood testing into question (like breath machine calibration logs and blood testing checklists for integrity of whether your blood was drawn in a medically approved manner)
- Pursuing factual and legal defenses with the goal of reducing or dismissing your charge
- Working to restore your driving privileges quickly by telling you what you need to do for the DMV to keep your driver’s license or get a restricted license
- Negotiating with prosecutors to reach an agreement that allows you to avoid the most severe penalties
- Fighting in court on your behalf if you decide to take your case to trial
Why Choose Lamano Law Office to Handle Your Case?
Being arrested and charged with DUI can be a frightening experience. You might be worried about the possibility of a jail sentence, fines, or the suspension of your driving privileges, as well as the social stigma you may experience because of a conviction. You deserve to have a legal professional on your side who will aggressively fight for your rights.
If you are facing a DUI charge in Alameda, choose Lamano Law Office to advocate for your interests. Our legal team has more than 30 years of combined legal experience and has obtained successful outcomes. Our success rate is 98% with only 2% of clients facing jail time. We are rated #1 among Oakland-area criminal defense firms on Yelp and have a 100% record of five-star ratings on Google. When you turn to us for help, you can expect our Alameda DUI attorneys to:
- Provide you with an honest assessment of the best- and worst-case scenarios as well as likely outcomes of your DUI charges
- Offer you the respect and dignity you deserve so that you feel comfortable putting your case and your well-being in our hands
- Work diligently to reach a favorable resolution to your charge as efficiently as possible
- Advocate for your rights vigorously and explore every option for obtaining the best outcome possible
Types of DUI Cases Our Alameda DUI Attorneys Can Help With
At Lamano Law Office, DUI defense is one of our primary practice areas. Our extensive experience in the field of DUI defense allows us to handle your case competently and succinctly, saving you time and money and removing much of the stress that can be intrinsic to these situations.
Our defense team regularly represents people in cases involving:
- Underage DUI
- Driving under the influence of drugs
- Commercial Driver DUI
- Out-of-state residents who get a DUI in California
No matter the circumstances of your arrest, you need an attorney who will really listen to you and take the time to understand your concerns and goals. Our women-owned defense firm pairs compassionate service with aggressive advocacy in every case we handle.
Common Defenses in DUI Cases
After you are pulled over, arrested, and charged with DUI, it may seem like you have few options available that will allow you to defend your freedom and your reputation. However, depending on the circumstances of your case, there may be defenses you can raise successfully to contest the prosecution’s evidence against you. Common defenses to DUI cases in Alameda include:
- Excluding prosecutorial evidence because law enforcement lacked reasonable suspicion or probable cause to initiate a traffic stop
- Arguing that the prosecution lacks evidence to prove that you were operating a motor vehicle, especially if you were approached by police while outside of your vehicle or while you were in your parked vehicle with the engine turned off
- Illustrating that police conducted an unauthorized field sobriety test or improperly conducted an authorized test
- Proving that a health condition or external conditions affected the administration or results of breath or blood testing
- Demonstrating that a breath test was improperly conducted because it was not conducted within three hours of arrest, it was conducted without the required 15-minute observation period, or it was conducted with an uncalibrated machine
- Insisting that blood test results cannot be relied upon due to errors in testing procedures or a break in the chain of custody of your blood sample
- Noting that a blood test was performed on you without your consent and without a warrant
- Raising concerns that the prosecution failed to preserve your blood sample for retesting
Penalties for a DUI Conviction
The penalties that may be imposed for a DUI conviction vary depending on whether the defendant has any prior DUI convictions and whether anyone was injured by the motorist while they were driving under the influence. Potential penalties for a DUI conviction in California include:
- First offense: Up to six months in county jail, a fine of $390 to $1,000 dollars, driver’s license suspension for four to 10 months or the requirement to install an ignition interlock device for six months, and three to nine months of DUI school
- Second offense: 96 hours to 364 days in county jail, a fine of $390 to $1,000 dollars, driver’s license suspension of two years or the requirement to install an ignition interlock device for one year, and 18 or 30 months of DUI school
- Third offense: 120 to 364 days in county jail, a fine of $390 to $1,000 dollars, driver’s license suspension of three years or the requirement to install an ignition interlock device for two years, and 30 months of DUI school
A DUI may be charged as a felony offense on a fourth or subsequent conviction within 10 years or if a person is injured as a result of the impaired motorist’s conduct. Penalties may include:
- Felony DUI: Between 16 months and three years in state prison, driver’s license suspension for up to five years, and 18 or 30 months of DUI school
- Felony DUI with injury: Between 16 months and 16 years in state prison, up to $5,000 in fines plus restitution to the harmed parties, one year of driver’s license suspension, and 18 or 30 months of DUI school
California DUI FAQs
Common questions that we get from clients who seek legal guidance concerning their DUI charges include:
In California, the terms “DUI” and “DWI” typically refer to the same kinds of criminal offenses. Some states use one term and some states use the other. Still other states make distinctions between these two terms. Conversationally, the terms are used interchangeably in most contexts.
“DUI” stands for “driving under the influence,” while “DWI” stands for “driving while impaired/intoxicated.” California statutes use the term “DUI” exclusively.
Under certain circumstances, a trial court will dismiss a DUI charge. Some DUI cases are dismissed after a procedural violation has come to light, such as a violation of the defendant’s rights during the arraignment or preliminary hearing. More frequently, courts will dismiss DUI charges because the prosecution lacks sufficient evidence to bring the case to trial. This usually occurs if the defendant successfully moves to exclude evidence of their intoxication because it was obtained in violation of their rights (such as if police pulled them over without reasonable suspicion or probable cause) or because breath or blood test results are deemed unreliable.
Alternatively, California allows for DUI charges to be reduced to less-serious charges of either “wet reckless” driving or “dry reckless” driving. Both charges offer reduced penalties when compared to DUI charges. They differ from one another in that a “wet reckless” driving conviction will count as a prior DUI conviction if the individual is convicted of a DUI offense within the next 10 years.
Under California law, a driver’s blood alcohol content cannot exceed .08 percent. However, for drivers under the age of 21 or drivers already on probation for a prior DUI, the legal limit is .01 percent. Drivers of trucks, commercial vehicles, taxis, and rideshare vehicles have a legal limit of .04 percent while on duty.
Don’t Leave Your Fate to Chance. Let Our Alameda DUI Attorneys Take Care of You.
If you’ve been arrested and charged with a DUI offense, you shouldn’t – and don’t have to – face these charges alone. At Lamano Law Office, we’re ready to build the strongest possible defense under the circumstances on your behalf. We combine a compassionate approach to our clients with aggressive, grounded legal strategies, as our 100 percent five-star ratings on Google attest.
Contact us today for a confidential consultation with an Alameda DUI lawyer from our firm to discuss the details of your case. Once we’ve explained your rights and legal options, we’ll answer any questions that you may have so that you’re empowered to make informed choices about your situation. Please don’t delay in scheduling a case evaluation with our team, as the time to start protecting your rights is now.