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What to Expect after a DUI California Arrest : Confused about the procedure at the DMV and in the Criminal Case? Here's an overview of what to expect.

What Happens at the DMV Hearing?

REMEMBER: You must contact the DMV WITHIN 10 DAYS OF YOUR ARREST. We can arrange this hearing for you.


The DMV Hearing is conducted to determine if there is sufficient evidence to suspend your license for four months.


Without a hearing, your license is automatically suspended.

The DMV Hearing is held at one of the DMV Field Safety Offices in front of a Hearing Officer who is an employee of the DMV – the same person who prepares your suspension.  It can be conducted either in person or telephonically. We prefer to do so in person.

We will make this appearance for you.

Important: A Public Defender CANNOT represent you at the DMV hearing. Without a seasoned, skilled DUI Lawyer to stand with YOU at the DMV hearing, you will lose your license because there is not even the appearance of fairness on the DMV’s part!

The DMV must provide you with the evidence against you prior to the Hearing.  We will scour the discovery to make sure that all of the procedural safeguards were met and fight for your rights from the beginning.

At the DMV Hearing the Hearing Officer proceeds first and has the obligation to establish proof that:

  1. The Police Officer had reasonable cause to stop you.
  2. You were lawfully arrested.
  3. You were driving and
  4. Your blood-alcohol ratio was 0.08% percent or higher, or
  5. You refused to submit to a chemical test.

At the DMV Hearing the Hearing Officer serves as both judge and prosecutor.  So the Hearing Officer will both seek to introduce evidence to support the suspension of your license and rule on its admissibility. 

Because the Hearing Officer has this unchecked power over your license, you need to have a skilled DUI Attorney on your side to ensure your rights are protected.

What Happens in DUI Court?

dui_courtARRAIGNMENT: You are formally charged and provided with some of the Prosecutor’s discovery. A skilled Criminal DUI Lawyer will know how to demand more information from the Prosecutor and from Police Agencies.

PRE-TRIAL: The Court will ensure that the parties are progressing toward Trial.Any Motions, either to suppress (exclude) testimony or evidence or order additional Discovery may be heard at this time.

TRIAL: After all Pre-Trial Motions have been heard, there will be a Trial.

A Jury will be selected.

Opening statements will be made.

The Prosecutor will present their case, seeking to show you were Driving Under the Influence.

At this time, our skilled DUI Lawyer will cross-examine the Prosecutor’s witnesses.

Next, we will present your case raising affirmative defenses and rebutting the testimony and evidence put on by the Prosecutor.

Both sides will argue, the Judge will instruct the Jury, and the jury will retire to deliberate.

It is extremely important to be well represented at the Criminal Court. the issues and defenses are highly technical. The penalties can be severe. A great Attorney can make sure you get the best outcome possible.

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