DUI Defense

If you were arrested for DUI in the City of San Francisco or the surrounding areas, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney to discuss your case. Our attorneys are experienced in attacking the results of a breath or blood test.

DUI enforcement efforts in San Francisco include sobriety checkpoints, DUI saturation patrols (task force operations), and proactive DUI enforcement (roving enforcement).

Ticket Crushers is particularly experienced with the tactics used by the San Francisco Police Department, the California Highway Patrol, and other local law enforcement agencies in the greater San Francisco Bay area. Our experienced criminal defense attorneys represent clients on a variety of DUI charges. We also represent clients at the DMV administrative hearings to protect their driver’s license.

Whether this is your first DUI or a second DUI or a subsequent offense, the potential criminal penalties are serious. A criminal defense attorney can fight to have the charges dismissed or at least reduced so that you avoid a DUI conviction.

DUI cases are unique because they involve scientific evidence related to field sobriety testing, impairment from alcohol or drugs, and chemical testing of the breath, or urine. Having an experienced attorney can make all the difference in how your case is resolved.

Call today to talk to a lawyer on the phone and to schedule a free consultation in our office. We can schedule an office visit at your convenience, including the same day or next day appointment.


WARNING!

After a DUI arrest, you only have ten (10) days to request a DMV hearing to contest the administrative suspension of your driver’s license. If you fail to act, then the administrative suspension of your driver’s license will start 30 days after your arrest. Call us to find out more about hiring an attorney who can immediately demand your DMV hearing.


Administrative DUI APS Driver’s License Suspension

After an arrest for DUI, a law enforcement officer will often confiscate a person’s driver’s license and issue a written Order of Suspension and Temporary License under California’s “Administrative Per Se” (APS) provision.

Read the “Notice of Suspension” carefully. The Notice of Suspension explains that you or your attorney only have ten (10) days from the date of your arrest to demand a hearing to contest the administrative suspension of your driver’s license. The administrative hearing is your ONLY opportunity to show that the suspension or revocation is not justified.

Contact an experienced DUI defense attorney at Ticket Crushers within ten (10) days of your arrest. Find out why you should hire an attorney with ten (10) days of your arrest to demand a hearing to contest the administrative suspension of your driver’s license.

If you fail to request a DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) hearing within ten (10) days of the DUI arrest, then your privilege to drive will be suspended for a minimum of four (4) months.

The DMV office for an APS suspension hearing is located at 1377 Fell Street, San Francisco, CA. The phone number is 415-557-3722. If you intend to hire an attorney, however, it is important to hire the attorney within the first ten (10) days of the arrest so that the attorney can request the DMV hearing.

After your DUI arrest, you will also receive a Temporary License. If your license is otherwise valid, then the temporary license allows you to drive for 30 days from the date the order of suspension or revocation was issued.


Triggering of the Administrative APS Suspension after a DUI Arrest

After a DUI arrest, the officer is required to send each of the following documents to the DMV, triggering the administrative suspension:

  • Record of driver’s license confiscation if taken at the time of the arrest
  • Copy of the completed notice of suspension or revocation form
  • A sworn report
  • Results of any breath, blood or urine test to determine concentration of alcohol or the presence of any controlled substance

When the DMV receives these documents, it conducts a cursory review of the paperwork before validating the administrative suspension of your driver’s license. The DMV then upholds the suspension or revocation. The suspension is almost always upheld. In fact, you are only notified of the results of the cursory administrative hearing in the unlikely even that the DMV sets the suspension aside during its cursory review.

Therefore, to contest the administrative suspension, you or your attorney MUST demand a hearing within ten (10) days of receiving the suspension or revocation order.


Demanding a Hearing to Contest the Administrative Suspension

After a DUI arrest, you or your attorney should demand a hearing to contest the administrative suspension. You must act quickly after the arrest because you only have ten (10) days to demand the hearing. If you hire an attorney at Ticket Crushers, then we can demand the hearing for you.

During the hearing your attorney can call witnesses and submit evidence to show that the stop, detention, or arrest was unlawful. The attorney can also raise other legal challenges to the alleged refusal or the chemical test showing the presence of alcohol in your system.

Your attorney may be able to gain valuable information during the hearing that may ultimately help you win in the criminal case.

Even if your administrative suspension is upheld after the hearing, you can apply for a restricted license to drive to and from work at any DMV field office.


Reinstatement of the License after an Administrative Suspension

After the administrative suspension or revocation period expires, your driver’s license will be returned to you provided that you pay a $125 reissue fee to the DMV and you file proof of financial responsibility.

For a driver under the age of 21 arrested for DUI who received a suspension under California’s Zero Tolerance Law under Vehicle Code §§23136, 13353.1, 13388, 13392, the reissue fee is $100.


Length of the Administrative DUI Suspension

If a blood or breath test showed a BAC of 0.08 percent or higher:

  • A first offense will result in a four-month suspension
  • A second or subsequent offense within ten (10) years will result in a one-year suspension

For a person under the age of 21 who submitted to a handheld preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) test or other chemical test and the results showed a 0.01 percent BAC or more, the driving privilege will be administratively suspended for one (1 year.

If you refuse to take a chemical test of your breath, blood, or urine after a DUI Arrest, penalties include:

  • First Offense: A first offense will result in a one-year suspension
  • Second Offense: A second offense within ten (10) years will result in a two-year revocation
  • Third or Subsequent Offense: A third or subsequent offense within 10 years will result in a three-year revocation

A person under the age of 21 who refused to submit to a handheld preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) test or another chemical test after being lawfully detained or arrested may face the following penalties:

  • A first offense will result in a one-year suspension
  • A second offense within ten (10) years will result in a two-year revocation
  • A third or subsequent offense within ten (10) years will result in a three-year revocation

Consequences of a DUI Refusal

California’s implied consent statutes provide for certain administrative penalties if a person refuses to submit to a chemical test. A refusal that triggers administrative sanctions can only occur after a lawful DUI arrest.

The officer will request either a blood or breath test. As of January 1999, a urine test is no longer available unless:

  • The officer suspects you were driving under the influence of drugs or a combination of drugs and alcohol, or
  • Both the blood or breath tests are not available, or
  • You are a hemophiliac, or
  • You are taking anticoagulant medication in conjunction with a heart condition

Difference Between the Administrative Suspension and the Court-Ordered Suspension

Keep in mind that the DMV administrative suspension or revocation for the DUI arrest is completely different from the court-ordered suspension or revocation following any conviction in criminal court.

The DMV administrative suspension or revocation is an immediate administrative action taken against your driving privilege only. The administrative suspension is often called the Administrative Per Se (APS) suspension. The suspension or revocation for the APS are independent of any court-imposed jail sentence, fine, or other criminal penalty imposed when a person is convicted of driving under the influence (DUI).

The suspension or revocation following a conviction in court for DUI is a mandatory action for which jail, fine, or other criminal penalties can be imposed.


Types of DUI Charges in California

California law provides for several different types of DUI charges including:

  • Vehicle Code Section 23140 prohibits a person under the age of 21 from driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.05 percent or more
  • Vehicle Code Section 23152 prohibits driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs or driving with a blood alcohol level of 0.08 percent or more
  • Vehicle Code Section 23153 prohibits causing injury while driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs or causing injury while driving with a BAC of 0.08 percent or more
  • Vehicle Code Section 23103 as specified in Section 23103.5 prohibits reckless driving involving alcohol
  • Penal Code Section 191.5 prohibits gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, and
  • Penal Code Section 192(c)(3) prohibits vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated

Getting Your Driver’s License Back after a DUI Conviction

To get your driver’s license back if you are convicted of drinking under the influence (DUI) you must do the following:

  • Complete a Mandatory Suspension Period
    • For a first DUI conviction the court will suspend your driving privilege for six months and require you to complete a DUI program before you can be reinstated.
    • If your Blood Alcohol Level (BAC) was .15% or higher and you already had a record of violations for other reasons OR you refused to submit to a chemical test, the court may order you to complete a nine-month or longer program.
    • If your BAC was .20% or higher and the court refers you to an enhanced DUI treatment program, your license will be suspended for 10 months.
  • Pay a Reissuance Fee
    • Your driver license will be returned to you at the end of the suspension after you pay a $125.00 reissue fee to the DMV and file a Proof of Financial Responsibility (SR- 22).
    • The reissue fee is $100.00 if you were under age 21 at the time of violation and were suspended under the Zero Tolerance Law.
  • DUI Treatment Program
    • Show Proof of enrollment in DUI Treatment Program.
    • Submit a Certificate of Completion (DL-101).

Additional Resources

General Information after a DUI Arrest in California — Visit the website of the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to find out general information about a DUI arrest and prosecution in the State of California. Find out more about the automatic administrative suspension or revocation of your driver’s license triggered by a DUI arrest even before your first court date. Learn more about the order of suspension, temporary license, and ten (10) days to request an administrative hearing. Learn why the DMV suspension or revocation for the DUI arrest is different from the suspension or revocation following a conviction in criminal court for DUI. You can also find information on DUI statistics in California.

DMV Office in San Francisco — Visit the website of the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to find the address for the San Francisco DMV Office, which is located at 1377 Fell Street, San Francisco, CA  94117. You can call the office at (800) 777-0133. The normal office hours are from 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.


Finding the Right DUI Lawyer in San Francisco, CA

At Ticket Crushers, our offices are in San Francisco. We focus on representing clients arrested for DUI in the City of San Francisco and the surrounding areas. For most of our clients, the arrest was made by an officer with the San Francisco Police Department or the California Highway Patrol.

Most of these cases are prosecuted by the District Attorney’s Office in San Francisco in state court. A smaller percentage of these cases are prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s office if the offense occurred in the Presidio National Park or on other land owned by the federal government.

Most DUI cases in the County of San Francisco involve an arrest by an officer with the San Francisco Police Department, the San Francisco Sheriff’s Office, the California Highway Patrol and a few other local law enforcement agencies.

After an arrest for DUI, there are typically two cases pending against you. The first case involves an Administrative Per Se (APS) suspension with the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) that takes place immediately after the arrest. The second case involves a criminal charge prosecuted in court. We can represent you in both cases.

The attorneys at Ticket Crushers are experienced in fighting DUI cases in and around San Francisco, CA. By focusing on these types of complicated cases, we can keep up to date on the most recent changes in the law and innovative defenses. We also represent clients on traffic tickets issued in San Francisco.

We know your time is valuable. We provide a free consultation over the phone with an attorney before you schedule the free consultation in the office. We are happy to sit down and talk with you about the facts of our case and potential defenses that might apply.

Whether your DUI case involves a blood test, a breath test, or a DUI refusal, please call 1 (866) 842-5384 to discuss your case today with an experienced San Francisco DUI Lawyer at Ticket Crushers. We can begin your defense today.