If you are ever charged with a DUI in California, it can seem like a helpless experience. However, it’s not one that you have to go through alone. Hiring a Sacramento DUI lawyer is recommended whenever you can afford one, but a common question we receive here at Taxman DUI Defense is at what point in the process you should do it.
While every case is unique and has its own nuance, our advice is typically to hire a lawyer who specializes in DUI cases as soon as possible after being arrested. Below, we outline the different deadlines you’ll face with your case to explain why bringing on an expert early is best.
Important deadlines to know in DUI cases.
When you’re arrested for a DUI in California, your driver’s license is confiscated, and you’re issued a temporary 30-day replacement. After those 30 days, your license can be suspended, and you can lose your driving rights. One way around this is to have your Sacramento DUI lawyer request an administrative hearing with the DMV.
The decision over whether or not you get to maintain your driving privileges happens separately from the DUI case, but you only have 10 days after the date of your arrest to request a hearing with the DMV. By bringing a law expert in early, you’ll have a better chance to continue driving until the case is resolved.
The arraignment is the first actual appearance in court following a DUI arrest, and it typically takes place around two weeks after the incident. It’s here that the judge will inform you of the charges being brought against you and ask how you would like to plea – not guilty, guilty, or no contest.
How you plea will dictate what your options are moving forward and what kind of consequences you’re facing, so it’s essential to have your lawyer with you at this time. They can represent you during the arraignment and pressure the prosecution to offer you a better deal.
Your DUI case can go to trial as quickly as 45 days following your arrest, but it can also get dragged out for months. That’s because numerous steps occur between the arraignment and the actual trial if you’re fighting the case.
Before the trial begins, there’s a discovery phase where both sides gather relevant information and have an opportunity to file a motion to suppress certain pieces of evidence. There is also a chance to file a motion for dismissal to have the case dropped or continued plea bargaining to reduce the charges.
If you haven’t already hired a Sacramento DUI lawyer, you’ll undoubtedly want to have one on your side during this part of the process. Understanding the many complex intricacies of the legal system is difficult, and trying to navigate these steps by yourself hurts your chances of getting a favorable outcome.
Have you been arrested for a DUI in Sacramento?
If so, don’t wait until it’s too late to hire a lawyer to represent your case. The Sacramento DUI lawyer experts here at Taxman DUI Defense are ready to step in and fight on your behalf. For more than 20 years, Steven Taxman has been practicing criminal defense law, and in that time, he’s earned a strong record of success for getting his clients optimal results.
We can work with you to understand the specifics of your case and determine what the best path forward is to have your charges reduced or dropped entirely. You can view some of our client testimonials, or contact us online to schedule your initial consultation.