The legal age for drinking in California is 21 and the zero-tolerance laws enforced by the state are strictly followed. Due to this, disciplinary actions for drunk driving are severe and can even end in a criminal record. Since drinking is strictly prohibited for people under 21, any amount of BAC (Blood Alcohol Concentration) is treated as an under 21 DUI, even though the limit for over 21 drivers is 0.8%. Therefore, if you even have a BAC of 0.1%, it will be treated as an under 21 DUI and penalties will be enforced as per law.
In most of the cases of DUI, the first action taken is license suspension. After the DUI arrest, you must request a DMV Admin Per Se hearing within ten days to challenge the suspension.
How Long will Your License be Suspended?
• If you were caught with a BAC between 0.1-0.79%, your license will be suspended for one year.
• If the BAC level was higher than 0.8%, the license can be suspended for one year, along with other over 21 penalties.
Can There be an Exception?
License suspension is inevitable in any case of DUI under 21. However, if you have a job or education to continue then you can apply for a restricted license. This type of license is possible but extremely difficult to obtain. For this, DMV allows the suspect only 10 days (including holidays and weekends) to request a hearing. This time frame cannot be extended under any circumstances. After application, the DMV issues you a temporary license that is good until the outcome of a DMV hearing.
However, this whole process may seem a lot for someone who is young and uninformed of the law. In such cases, it is always best that you hire an experienced DUI attorney who can go through the charges and suggest the best possible action.
While it is best to follow the rules and regulations set by the state, if you happen to be charged with a DUI infraction infraction or misdemeanor, it is always best to have a senior DUI attorney like C. Robert Brooks with you who can get you the best possible outcome from a hearing.