El Dorado County Under 21 DUI

If you have been arrested in EL Dorado County for an Under 21 DUI, it may be your first experience with facing a criminal charge.  If convicted, you could face jail time, fines, suspension of your driving privileges and increased insurance rates.  Convictions can also have negative consequences on your employment opportunities.  It is against the law for persons under the age of 21 to consume alcohol. If you are under 21 and arrested or cited for driving with alcohol in your system, there are different charges you can face in court.  Additionally, the DMV will suspend your license for a period for 1 year if you lose the DMV hearing.   

You Have Two Cases

 If you have been arrested or cited for an Under 21 DUI, you have two problems – A DMV problem and an El Dorado County criminal court problem.  The DMV and the Court process are separate and must be fought independently.  The DMV case relates to your CA driving privilege and whether your license will be returned, suspended, or revoked.  The El Dorado County court case deals with punishment for the crime of DUI and may include jail time, fines, alcohol education classes, license suspensions, probation, vehicle impound, installation of an ignition interlock device or a combination of these things.  Sentencing enhancements may increase punishment and length of license suspension. 

DMV License Suspension v Court License Suspension

There are two ways your driving privilege in CA can be suspended.  If you lose or default on the DMV hearing, a 1 year suspension can occur.  If you get convicted in court, it will trigger a 1 year suspension.  In most first offense cases, you may be eligible for a “critical need” license.  A “critical need” license allows someone who has had their license suspended for 1 year to drive for work or school.       

Important – DMV Hearing Date MUST BE SET Within 10 days of arrest

To get a DMV hearing you must call DMV to request a hearing, it is not automatically set for you.  It is your responsibility to set your DMV hearing within 10 calendar days of the arrest or citation.  If you do not request a hearing within 10 days, your license will automatically be suspended 30 days after your arrest for a period of 1 year.  The number to call to set your DMV hearing is on your Temp License/Notice of Suspension. (Usually Pink Paper, Top Right Corner) 

VC 23136 – Under 21 BAC .01% or greater – zero tolerance

It is unlawful for a person under the age of 21 years who has a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.01 percent or greater to drive a vehicle.  This is an infraction offense so there is no probation.  The court punishment includes a $490 fine, sometimes a 12 hour DUI class, and usually the requirement to abstain from alcohol.  The court will also suspend your driver’s license for 1 year.    

VC23140 – Person under 21 with BAC .05% or greater 

It is unlawful for a person under the age of 21 years who has 0.05 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a vehicle.  This is an infraction offense so there is no probation.  The court punishment includes a $490 fine, a mandatory 12-hour DUI class, and usually the requirement to abstain from alcohol.  The court will also suspend your driver’s license for 1 year.    

Wet Reckless (VC23103/VC23103.5) 

A wet reckless is reckless driving involving alcohol or drugs.  In cases where there is a low alcohol level usually below 0.10 or drugs like marijuana or prescription medications, you can negotiate for a wet reckless disposition.  It’s a better resolution then a DUI because it comes with no IID, and usually no jail time.  A wet reckless is a good resolution for under 21 drivers because it saves money and looks better on your record.  The negative thing about a wet reckless is that it is prior able against you by the DMV or Court if you ever get another DUI within the next 10 years.  It also results in a 1-year license suspension.      

Reckless Driving (VC23103)

A dry reckless is reckless driving not involving alcohol or drugs.  It’s a better resolution then a DUI or Wet Reckless because it is not prior able against you by the DMV or Court if you ever get another DUI within the next 10 years.  There is no license suspension associated with it.      

Under 21 DUI – 23152 First Offense DUI

If you are over a 0.08 percent BAC you will be charged with a VC23152 DUI.  The punishment is as follows:   

Court Punishment 1st Offense DUI Under 21

Jail

48 hrs to 6 months

DUI Program

3/6/9 month

Fines

$390 to $1000

Ignition Interlock Device

Up to 3 yrs, 5 month mandatory in Sacramento County

Probation

3 to 5 years – Informal or Formal

Car Impound

Up to 6 months

License Suspension

1 year mandatory

Enhancements

23578 – Driving with BAC .15+ – Add 6 m DUI class

23578 – Driving with BAC .20+ – Add 9 m Dui class

23577 – Refusal to take chemical test – Add 96 hrs jail

23582 – Excessive Speed – Add 60 days jail

23572 – Child under 14 in car – Add 48 hrs jail

First Court Date

After you are released from jail or cited and released, you are given a court date for your arraignment.  Arraignment is where the government tells you the charges and potential punishment you face.  If you hire an attorney on a misdemeanor DUI, you never have to go to court.  If you don’t hire an attorney, you must appear at your first court date or a warrant will be issued.  Don’t confuse your court date with your DMV Hearing date.           

Temporary License 

At the time of your arrest, the police take your license and give you a Temporary License/Notice of Suspension.  This piece of paper is your new temporary driver’s license so keep it with you.   If you had a valid driver’s license at the time, you can continue to drive until the outcome of the DMV action.  If you request a DMV hearing within 10 days, you will be allowed to drive until a decision is rendered on the outcome of the DMV hearing.  Once your DMV hearing is set the DMV is supposed to mail you a new temp license.  If you don’t set a DMV hearing, your driving privilege will be suspended 30 days after your arrest.   

Notice of Suspension

The notice of suspension notifies you of your right to a hearing to contest the action against your license.  Most people don’t read the notice which explains that you must request your hearing within 10 days.  You must read your temporary license and notice of suspension because it contains important information regarding your legal rights. 

Work/School “Critical Need” to drive license

If your license was valid and you were not on DUI probation at the time you were arrested, then you may be eligible for a work/school restricted driver’s license.  On a first offense, you have to wait 30 days.  This means that from the time your suspension takes effect you couldn’t drive for 30 days.  After 30 days, you would apply for a critical need to drive license.  If approved, you will be allowed to drive to work or school.        

SR-22 Requirement

To get your license reinstated after your DMV suspension or after your court conviction you will need to obtain an SR-22.  An SR-22 form is a certificate filed by your car insurance company with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).  To obtain an SR-22, you would contact your car insurance company to inform them of your need for an SR-22 certificate of financial responsibility. The costs of an SR22 vary by insurance company.  The costs of filing the certificate itself from your insurance company should be between $25 and $50.      

Under 21 DUI – DMV APS Hearing

California Vehicle Code (CVC), established strict Zero Tolerance requirements and penalties for drivers under 21 years of age. The DMV is required to suspend or revoke the driving privilege of any person under age 21 who was detained and/or arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol, or a combination of alcohol and drugs, who:

  • Takes a Preliminary Alcohol Screening (PAS) test, or a chemical test (blood or breath test) with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) level of 0.01% or more, or
  • Refuses to take, or fails to complete, a PAS or other chemical test.

Under 21 DUI – DMV APS Hearing Issues

If you took a PAS or other chemical test:

  • Did the peace officer have reasonable cause to believe you were driving a motor vehicle in violation of CVC §23136, or driving a motor vehicle while on probation in violation of CVC §23154?
  • Were you lawfully detained?
  • Were you driving a motor vehicle while under 21 years of age with a BAC level of 0.01% or greater, as measured by a PAS device or other chemical test?

If you refused, or failed to complete, a PAS test or other chemical test:

  • Did the peace officer have reasonable cause to believe you were driving a motor vehicle in violation of CVC §23136, or driving a motor vehicle while on probation in violation of CVC §23154?
  • Were you lawfully detained?
  • Were you told that your driving privilege would be suspended or revoked for one to three years, or for two or three years if you were on probation, failed to complete or refused to submit to a PAS test, or other chemical test, while under age 21?
  • Did you refuse to submit to, or fail to complete, a PAS or other chemical test after being requested to do so by a peace officer?

Under 21 DUI – Length of DMV Suspension   

If you took a PAS or chemical test, and the results showed a 0.01% BAC level or more, your driving privilege will be suspended for one year.  If you refused, or failed to complete, a PAS or other chemical test your driving privilege will be:

  • Suspended for one year, for a first offense.
  • Revoked for two years, for a second offense in 10 years
  • Revoked for three years, for three or more offenses in 10 years.

Under 21 DUI – “Critical Need” to drive License    

After a 30-day suspension period, you may apply for a critical need DL only if:

  • You completed a PAS or chemical test with a BAC level of 0.01% or more, and
  • You have a critical need to drive.

A critical need restriction is very limited (CVC §§12513, 13353.8). To be eligible for the restriction you must verify that:

  • A specific critical need condition exists, and
  • All other transportation is inadequate.

Only first offenders who completed a PAS or other chemical test are eligible to apply for a critical need restricted DL (CVC §13353.8).

Under 21 DUI – “Critical Neeed” to drive Criteria     

To be approved for a critical need to drive license you must meet the following specific criteria. 

School and School Activities – you have no other reasonable transportation options and the operation of a vehicle is necessary to attend school or school activities.  Your application must be signed by a school representative verifying such facts.  You will be restricted to operating a vehicle between school and home.   

Illness of Family Member – you have no other reasonable transportation options and the operation of a vehicle is necessary due to illness of a family member.  Your application must be signed by a physician, containing a diagnosis and probable date when sufficient recovery will have been made to terminate the emergency. 

Employment – you have no other reasonable transportation options and the operation of a vehicle is necessary for employment and the applicant’s income from such employment is essential in the support of the family.  Your application must be signed by a parent or the guardian, setting forth the reasons a license is necessary.

The existence of public transportation at reasonable intervals within one mile of the residence of the applicant may be considered adequate grounds for refusal of a permit.

The department shall impose restrictions appropriate to the conditions and area under which they are intended to be used.

Under 21 DUI – DMV APS Hearing Reinstate Drivers license 

To reinstate your driving privilege after an APS Zero Tolerance suspension/revocation, you must:

  • Pay a $100 reissue fee to DMV (CVC §13392).
  • File proof of financial responsibility (SR22)
  • Maintain proof of financial responsibility (SR22) for three years.

El Dorado County DUI Probation 

El Dorado County DUI probation is usually 4 years, is informal, and the terms include: no driving with any alcohol in your system, no refusal of chemical tests, submit to search and seizure for blood/breath, enrolling and completing the DUI class, paying fines/fees, paying restitution, obeying all laws, don’t drive unless properly licensed and insured, completing your jail sentence, and showing up for all court ordered appearances.      

DUI School Requirement 

If you are convicted of a DUI, you will be required to attend a DUI offender program.  All programs have payment plans.  To sign up for the DUI class you will need your court paperwork or an H6 DMV printout.             

Length

Average Cost

Wet Reckless

6 Week

$300

1st Offense BAC 0.08+

3 Month

$500

1st Offense BAC 0.15+

6 Month

$800

1st Offense BAC 0.20+

9 Month

$1200

2nd Offense

18 Month

$1800

3rd Offense

18 Month

$1800

Ignition Interlock Requirment

If you are convicted of a second offense, you will be required to install an ignition interlock in your vehicle for 1 to 2 years.  This device will not let you start or continue to operate your vehicle if you have alcohol in your system.  The cost of the IID varies between IID providers but it is approximately $70 to install and $60 a month.  Shop it for the best price.     

Alternative Sentencing

In most first offense DUI cases, the court will allow you to apply for alternative sentencing.  This means instead of doing actual jail time you would satisfy your jail sentence by doing El Dorado County Sheriff work project or Probation Home Electronic Monitoring.       

DUI FInes and Fees

You can expect to pay approximately $2000 or more if you are convicted of a DUI.  Most courts will allow you to make payments.  If you fail to make payments, you will be referred to collections.  If you are referred to collections, your license will be suspended for failing to make payments and you will not be able to get your license reinstated until you pay off the amount you owe.  You may also have your probation violated for not making payments.  To save money you want to convert your fines/fees to alternative sentencing which can save you a lot of money.         

Violating DUI Probation

You will be in violation of probation if you fail to comply with the court ordered probation terms including failing to enroll/complete DUI classes, appear in court when ordered, or completing your jail sentence.  If probation is violated, the judge will issue a bench warrant which will be sent to law enforcement.  You will then be arrested and brought back to court to answer for the violation of probation. 

DUI Violation of Probation Punishment

Violating DUI probation results in additional punishment and DUI probation terms.  This could include actual jail time instead of alternative sentencing and additional time for the VOP. 

DUI Expungement

Even if you are convicted of a DUI, you can still get your case expunged.  An expungement allows you to lawfully answer that you have never been convicted of a crime.  To be eligible, you must have successfully completed probation, paid all your fines and fees, and completed the terms of your probation.  DUI expungements are not mandatory but are discretionary.  When you hire our law firm we will help you with your expungement when you become eligible so that your criminal record and history our as clean as possible moving forward in life. 

You don’t have to plead guilty, contact our office today for a free same day consultation

We have successfully represented many Under 21 drivers’ accused of DUI. We have obtained acquittals, dismissals and reductions of DUI charges, have had DMV suspensions set aside, and have obtained “critical need to drive” licenses. Call our office today at (916) 939-3900 or (530) 621-1800 to speak directly to an attorney about your Under 21 DUI case.  We are open 24/7/365 to answer your questions.       

VC 23136 – 0.01 Offense by Person under 21 involving alcohol  

(a) Notwithstanding Sections 23152 and 23153, it is unlawful for a person under the age of 21 years who has a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.01 percent or greater, as measured by a preliminary alcohol screening test or other chemical test, to drive a vehicle. However, this section shall not be a bar to prosecution under Section 23152 or 23153 or any other provision of law.

(b) A person shall be found to be in violation of subdivision (a) if the person was, at the time of driving, under the age of 21 years, and the trier of fact finds that the person had consumed an alcoholic beverage and was driving a vehicle with a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.01 percent or greater, as measured by a preliminary alcohol screening test or other chemical test.

(c) (1) Any person under the age of 21 years who drives a motor vehicle is deemed to have given his or her consent to a preliminary alcohol screening test or other chemical test for the purpose of determining the presence of alcohol in the person, if lawfully detained for an alleged violation of subdivision (a).

(2) The testing shall be incidental to a lawful detention and administered at the direction of a peace officer having reasonable cause to believe the person was driving a motor vehicle in violation of subdivision (a).

(3) The person shall be told that his or her failure to submit to, or the failure to complete, a preliminary alcohol screening test or other chemical test as requested will result in the suspension or revocation of the person’s privilege to operate a motor vehicle for a period of one year to three years, as provided in Section 13353.1.

VC23140 – 0.05 Offense by Person under 21 involving alcohol

(a) It is unlawful for a person under the age of 21 years who has 0.05 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a vehicle.

(b) A person may be found to be in violation of subdivision (a) if the person was, at the time of driving, under the age of 21 years and under the influence of, or affected by, an alcoholic beverage regardless of whether a chemical test was made to determine that person’s blood-alcohol concentration and if the trier of fact finds that the person had consumed an alcoholic beverage and was driving a vehicle while having a concentration of 0.05 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood.

(c) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, upon a finding that a person has violated this section, the clerk of the court shall prepare within 10 days after the finding and immediately forward to the department an abstract of the record of the court in which the finding is made. That abstract shall be a public record and available for public inspection in the same manner as other records reported under Section 1803.