Driving under the influence of alcohol or another substance is a very serious charge. You need an experienced attorney on your side to help fight against this charge. Although DUI charges are common in California—1.8% of those surveyed indicated that they drove after drinking too much in the past 30 days—that does not make them any less severe.
The penalties for a San Jose DUI conviction can be severe. You should not face these legal charges alone. Having the right legal help can significantly affect the outcome of your case.
An experienced San Jose DUI lawyer will be able to help you defend your case or get a plea deal that works in your favor. Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial consultation: 1 (866) 852-7126.
Get an Administrative Hearing on Your Driver’s License Suspension after a San Jose, CA DUI Charge
In San Jose, the police officer that pulls you over for a DUI will immediately take your driver’s license. This law is sometimes referred to as the “stop and snatch” law in Santa Clara County.
Once your license is taken away, that triggers an administrative process to suspend your driver’s license. The officer should provide you with a temporary license that sets out that you have just ten days to request an administrative hearing with DMV. If you want to fight your driver’s license suspension, you need to act quickly after your arrest.
What does a San Jose, CA DUI administrative hearing involve?
The administrative hearing on your license is informal, but you have a far better chance of keeping your license if you involve a San Jose DUI attorney in the process. This hearing functions as a “mini-trial.” Your lawyer will be able to subpoena witnesses, gather effective evidence, and more. It is also a great opportunity to get more information about your DUI stop for your criminal case as well.
What happens if I don’t request a hearing within 10 days?
If you do not request a hearing within the ten-day period, then your right to a hearing is waived. Your license will be automatically suspended as a result. Your license will be suspended for a period of four months on your first offense. If it is your second offense, you can plan on a year-long suspension.
Does the administrative hearing apply to all DUI charges?
Although you can be charged with a DUI for drug consumption, the administrative hearing process is specifically limited to offenses based on alcohol in San Jose.
How long does a temporary license last after a DUI arrest?
Your temporary license will last for 30 days, but your ability to request a hearing has a much shorter time window.
Refusing Chemical Testing for DUI in San Jose
We often get questions about whether you should consent to chemical testing when you get pulled over or detained for a DUI in San Jose. Whether you consent to chemical testing depends on the unique circumstance of your situation.
However, you should note that if you refuse chemical testing, you lose the right to your DMV hearing. You will also have your license suspended for one year automatically in many circumstances.
San Jose, CA DUI Penalties and Sentencing
The penalties and sentencing associated with a San Jose DUI charge operate separately from what the DMV does with your license. If you are convicted of drunk driving, you might face the following penalties.
- Fines of at least $390 to over $1,000
- Up to three years of probation ·
- A six-month suspension of your license ·
- Attendance at California DUI School
- Up to six months in jail
In many cases, your jail time can be suspended, but that is not the case in every situation. If you are convicted of subsequent DUIs, the penalties can increase significantly. For example, the fine for a second DUI is up to $2,000, and you must serve a minimum of 96 hours in jail.
San Jose Jail and Courthouse Information
Jail and Booking Information for Adults
Most San Jose DUI arrestees will end up at either the Elmwood Correctional Complex or the Santa Clara Main Jail Complex for booking. Many of those arrested will be forced to spend time in jail right away after their arrest, at least until they can arrange for bail funds to get out.
Elmwood Correctional Complex is located at 701 S. Abel Street in Milpas, CA.
Santa Clara Main Jail Complex is located at 150 West Hedding Street in San Jose, CA.
Jail and Booking Information for Juveniles
Juveniles will not go to either of these facilities. Instead, they will likely be booked at the Santa Clara Juvenile Hall, which is located at 840 Guadalupe Parkway in San Jose, CA. The juvenile court takes place in that location as well.
Courthouse Information The Santa Clare District Attorney’s Office represents the State of California when it comes to prosecuting DUI cases in San Jose. All DUI cases are heard in the Santa Clara Superior Court, which is located at 190-200 West Hedding Street in San Jose, CA.
Several departments will hear DUI cases, and various courtrooms will house DUI cases when they go to trial. The area where your case will be heard will vary based on when you are charged and the individual judge assigned to the case.
Judges will sometimes switch locations, so it is important to check with your San Jose DUI attorney to get information on where you should go for appearances or trial. The court clerk can also be a helpful resource if you need information about where to go or how to get there.
Is Hiring a San Jose DUI Attorney Really Worth It?
Can’t I just get a public defender?
In some cases, you may qualify to get free legal help with your San Jose DUI. However, you should use caution when requesting a court-appointed lawyer. These professionals often have a huge number of cases, and they might not be able to give your case the attention it deserves.
In many cases, the public defender likely cares a great deal about you and your case, but he or she may simply be too overworked and exhausted to provide you with the type of legal representation that you need.
Even if you qualify, getting a court-appointed attorney may not be a good idea. Instead, getting your own lawyer will help ensure that you get fair, effective representation. You will also get far more attention and careful analysis than you might otherwise get with a public defender. Keep in mind that you have to qualify to get a public defender. In general, a public defender will be appointed if you meet certain income restrictions.
Is there a benefit to having a private lawyer for my San Jose, CA DUI charge?
Your attorney has much more experience with laws affecting DUI charges than you do. He or she will know the ins and outs of the laws, including what you need to prove if you want to get your case dismissed.
Your DUI lawyer in San Jose will be able to tell you about the strengths and weaknesses of the case so you can evaluate the risk of going to trial or weigh out a plea agreement proposal more effectively. Getting a San Jose DUI law firm is especially important if your goal is to get your case dismissed or defend it at trial.
San Jose DUI School Information
Anyone convicted of a San Jose DUI must attend California DUI school. Most plea agreements will include a provision about attending DUI school as well.
Although DUI school programs are all similar, they vary in time length. Attending can be as sort as a few months or as long as three years. Your DUI history and blood alcohol content (BAC) will often have an effect on how long you must attend DUI school.
There are several DUI schools in the San Jose area, including:
- Alert Driving, Inc.
- National Traffic Safety Institute
- Asian Americans for Community Involvement
- Proyecto Primavera DDP
In most cases, you will be able to choose which San Jose DUI school you would like to attend. However, availability will vary based on the timing of your sentencing and how busy the programs are at that time.
Contact a San Jose DUI Lawyer Today
If you or a loved one has been charged with a DUI in San Jose or the surrounding area, you need an attorney to fight on your behalf. Contact our team to get more information about how to schedule a free consultation, our services, and more.
Call Summit Defense today or email us at 1 (866) 852-7126 for more information or to schedule an appointment.