If you are charged with a felony DUI in Riverside, you have very good reason to be concerned. The state of California takes felony DUI charges very seriously, and the prosecutor will pursue a conviction aggressively. If you are found guilty of a felony DUI, you face life-altering consequences. Your personal and professional relationships will likely suffer as a result of your conviction. On top of that, if you lose your license, you will have a difficult time getting to and from work. The financial stress, due to court costs, fines, and time off work, will only make matters worse. That’s not to mention the serious legal consequences of a felony DUI conviction.
In California, you can be charged with a felony DUI in three ways:
- You injure someone else or cause their death while driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- You have been found guilty of 3 or more misdemeanor DUIs in the last 10 years
- You were convicted of a felony DUI in the last 10 years
A felony DUI conviction in Riverside results in much more serious legal consequences than a misdemeanor DUI. If the court finds you guilty of a felony DUI, you face 180 days to one year in the county jail with probation or 16 months to 3 years in state prison, $390 to $1000 in fines, up to 30 months of participation in alcohol education program/DUI school, and up to 5 years of driver’s license suspension.
Additionally, repeat DUI offenders and those convicted of a DUI resulting in injury are required to install a California ignition interlock device (IID) for 3 years. This breathalyzer is installed in your car and requires you to provide an alcohol-free breath before your car will start. You will be responsible for the installation costs and monthly fees.
Consequences of Felony DUI With Injury in Riverside
Depending on the circumstances of your case, if you are convicted of a felony DUI with injury, you face 16 months to 10 years in a state prison, an additional consecutive sentence of 1 to 6 years, a possible strike on your record under California’s Three Strikes law, participation in a court-approved alcohol program for 18 to 30 months, and fines of $1015 to $5000. You may also be required to pay restitution to the alleged victims, which can range from a few thousand dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars. The court decides the amount according to the number of alleged victims and the extent of their injuries. Restitution can be ordered to cover damages to the victims for the following:
- Lost wages due to missed work
- Property damage
- Medical expenses
- Costs of therapy as a result of the accident
- Legal costs
DMV Hearing for Felony DUI
After being arrested for a felony DUI in Riverside, you have just 10 days to request a DMV hearing. If you do not request a hearing, the DMV will suspend your license. In the event you lose at your DMV hearing, your license will also be suspended.
It is important to note that the DMV can also designate you as a Habitual Traffic Offender, which comes with consequences in addition to the DUI penalties that you face, including 30 days in jail, a fine of $1,000, and up to three years of probation. If the DMV designates you as a Habitual Traffic Offender and you drive on a suspended license, you face 180 days in jail, a fine of $2,000, and up to three years of probation each time you are caught.
A felony DUI conviction in Riverside has long-lasting consequences. The costs associated with a conviction quickly add up, leading to significant stress and financial hardship. On top of court costs, fees, and fines, your insurance rates will sharply increase, costing you even more money. Moreover, if you are found guilty of a felony DUI, you’ll have a felony on your permanent record. You will also lose some of your civil rights and privileges. It can also prevent you from gaining custody in family court, obtaining credit, being approved for housing, and getting a good job. If you work in the transportation industry, a felony DUI conviction will completely disqualify you from driving commercially. Most importantly, it can cost you your freedom.
Contact a Felony DUI Defense Attorney Today | Riverside
Being charged with a felony DUI in Riverside is overwhelming and stressful. This is not something you want to face by yourself. It is extremely important to get a qualified California DUI defense attorney to defend you as soon as possible. Your attorney will begin working on your case before it ever goes to court. With a solid defense strategy, there is the hope of getting your charges reduced or possibly dismissed.
For over 40 years, our felony DUI defense attorneys at Wallin and Klarich have represented thousands of clients in cases similar to yours. We understand just how much is at stake, and we will fight to get you the best possible results in court, and we will do everything within our power to defend your freedom. You don’t have to face this alone. Contact our offices today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (714) 587-4279 for a free, no-obligation phone consultation. We will be there when you call.