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What Out of State Drivers Should Know About California DUI Laws

Posted on in DUI


California has some of the most restrictive DUI laws in the country. If you are an out-of-state driver, it is important that you understand these laws and what will happen if you are arrested on suspicion of DUI.

California DUI laws are applied to both in and out-of-state drivers. If you are from a state that is party to the Interstate Driver's License Compact, you may face consequences back home.

States party to the compact are:

  • Georgia
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Tennessee
  • Wisconsin

In circumstances where you are an out of state-driver from a state not party to the compact and are arrested on suspicion of DUI, the police officer will not have jurisdiction to suspend your driver's license. Instead, you will be issued an order of suspension, which is a legal document that informs you that your rights to drive in California will be invalidated in 30 days.

After receiving the order of suspension, you have ten days to schedule a hearing with the California DMV to litigate your suspension. Failing to schedule that hearing will result in the revocation of your driving privileges in California.

The DUI Hearing

You have an opportunity at your DUI hearing to contest your license suspension. The suspension of your driving privileges will not become official unless you fail to succeed at your hearing. This is where the experienced and insightful guidance of a San Jose DUI defense attorney is paramount. A common question for out-of-state drivers who were arrested on suspicion of drunk driving is if they have to be physically present at their DUI hearing. California law allows an attorney to appear on your behalf if you are not able to make your hearing.

The DUI hearing is where the arresting officer will first present evidence to support the fact that you were impaired while driving. At the DUI hearing, there are three primary elements that need to be proven by the arresting officer:

  1. A reasonable belief that you were driving under the influence
  2. A lawful arrest took place
  3. Your BAC or blood alcohol content was above .08% while operating a vehicle

San Jose DUI Defense

A DUI conviction can have pervasive consequences on the rest of your life. A conviction can affect your employment status, your ability to attain or maintain a professional license, or your ability to take advantage of certain governmental programs. When the state of California levies a criminal charge against you, there are vast resources available to prosecute you. Therefore, you should not face these charges alone. Our relentless and dedicated San Jose DUI criminal defense attorney at the Law Offices of Erik Steven Johnson has a proven record of defending his clients’ rights at each stage of their case. Contact our San Jose office to schedule your free consultation.

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