If you are arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, it does not necessarily mean you will be convicted, but it also doesn’t mean your case will automatically go to trial.
In fact, your best option may be to agree to a plea bargain before the case goes to trial.
An experienced DUI defense attorney can help you negotiate a favorable plea agreement, which could result in reduced charges and lesser penalties without the risks of going to trial. If there is no benefit to advancing the case to trial, then we don’t waste our clients’ money or time.
Under a plea deal our experienced DUI attorneys will further reduce any jail time by applying day for day credits for time that you may have spent in jail before bail or until you waited for your first court appearance. But most importantly our DUI attorneys will fight all jail alternative for our clients during the plea negotiation process that includes:
- Any county work release jail alternative program so that you may work on the weekends instead of spending time in Jail;
- Negotiate for any electronic monitoring or GPS based program so that you can avoid jail altogether;
- Negotiate all jail alternatives available and this varies county to county. SEE our link to: JAIL ALTERNATIVES.
Avoid Trial for DUI Charges
A DUI conviction has serious consequences. A first-time conviction carries up to six months in county jail and a $1,000 fine or both. The fine varies in each county because of add-ons so speak to your criminal defense attorney about the ultimate payout.
Additionally, you could also lose your driving privileges for a year or longer depending upon the facts in your case: Is this your first offense only? Did you refuse to give a breath or blood sample?
If you are convicted of DUI there are so many negative consequences to list here, but speak to one of our experienced criminal defense attorneys, but here are just a few:
- DUI classes depending on the 3, 9 or 18-month variety are expensive and time consuming;
- Your ultimate fines to the Court in Sonoma County alone top $2,500!
- An ignition interlock device may be required to be installed in your car or cars at your expense. The maintenance is pricey, and it is embarrassing. On a date or in front of your boss or colleagues you will have to blow into a monitor before your car starts!
- Your insurance rates will skyrocket, but we have a solution for that so come into our office for your free and confidential consultation—NO OBLIGATION.
- You will be on Court Probation for three years, but that can be shortened so ask us.
However, your attorney may be able to protect you from facing all these harsh consequences by negotiating a plea deal with the prosecution.
A plea deal is when you agree to plead guilty or no contest to the charges against you in exchange for the prosecution agreeing to reduce the charges you face or push for a much more lenient sentence. If you agree to plea bargain, you will not have to risk being convicted at trial. You avoid trial fees, wasted time and added trial fee expense.
DUI classes these days can consist of a 6 month program, usually required by DA’s as part of a plea deal when the client has out of time priors or other aggravating circumstances.
As part of your plea bargain, you will likely be asked to plead guilty to one of the following crimes:
Wet reckless driving: A wet reckless charge is a lesser included offense to a standard DUI conviction. It is treated as such so your fines are a fraction of the $2,500 fines mentioned above. Although you can technically face 90 days county jail time, in these types of offenses jail time is substantially reduced and sometimes not imposed at all depending upon our experienced defense attorneys skilled negotiation.
A wet reckless allows you the ability to take a much shorter in duration first offender/ wet reckless program or class saving you additional time and money.
Your Court Probational period will be substantially reduced from 3 years to 18 months depending.
A wet reckless conviction does not require a mandatory suspension of your driver’s license. However, if you are convicted of another DUI within 10 years, a wet reckless conviction will be treated as a DUI conviction, which would result in harsher punishment and more jail time for you.
Dry reckless driving: The probation period and penalties for this crime are very similar to a wet reckless conviction, but there is no mandatory jail time for a dry reckless driving conviction. Additionally, a dry reckless does not count as a prior DUI offense if you are charged with a DUI again within 10 years.
Exhibition of speed: An exhibition of speed conviction is punishable only by a fine.
Traffic infraction: The best possible outcome for a plea agreement would be a reduction to a traffic infraction. Your DUI charge would be amended by the prosecutor to an infraction for an unsafe lane change or speeding, and you may be able to remove the infraction from your driving record by going to traffic school.
Contact the DUI Defense Attorneys at Fiumara and Milligan Law Today
An experienced DUI defense attorney could make a huge difference in your case and save you a lot of time and grief, never mind money! Criminal defense attorneys like ourselves who know the prosecutors and judges in the court where your case will be heard are in the best position to negotiate a favorable plea bargain for you so that you do not have to face the harsh penalties of a DUI conviction.
At Fiumara and Milligan Law, our skilled DUI defense attorneys have been successfully defending clients facing DUI charges for almost three decades in Sonoma, Marin, Napa, Solano and throughout most of northern California.
Contact our offices today at 707-571-8600 or 415-492-4507 for a free consultation.
For more info on DUI related matters in the North Bay, CLICK HERE.