DUI Charges Under 21 in California

california dui charges under 21

DUI is an overwhelming phenomenon and represents a big danger to the public. Every fourth car accident occurs caused by the actions of the drivers under the influence. Taking into consideration the fact that under the influence of alcohol or drugs many important body functions are violated and the driver’s reaction is decreased as a result it occurs overconfidence, disregard for traffic enforcement etc. Moreover, the situation becomes more risky if the driver is a minor under 21. The possibility of danger consequences on the road increases as well as a young offender can become more dangerous for the public in the future.
In California, it is adopted a “zero tolerance” policy regarding minors drinking and driving. It is considered to be illegal, even when a minor’s blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.01%. Depending on circumstances, the offender can be charged with a civil offense, an infraction or/and a misdemeanor. In the following table you can find penalties for minors under 21 DUI depending on their BAC and subsequent charge.

BAC Charge Penalties
  • 0.01 – 0.05%
  • 0.05 – 0.08%
  • 0.08% and more
  • Civil offense
  • Infraction
  • Misdemeanor
  • An automatic one-year driver’s license suspension,
    A one-year delay of a driver’s license if the defendant has not yet it in California,
    If a person refuses to submit to a chemical test it can occur from 1 to 3 year driver’s license suspension.
  • A fine of $100 in case of first conviction
    A fine of $200 in case of second conviction within a one-year period
    A fine of $300 in case of third conviction within a one-year period
    In addition, a person will be guilty in the civil offense and face one of the following penalties.
    Suspension California driver’s license for one-year,
    Before reinstating of the driver’s license, complete a minimum 3 month alcohol program
  • imprisonment in the county jail for not less than 96 hours, at least 48 hours of which shall be continuous, nor more than six months
    by a fine of not less than three hundred ninety dollars ($390), nor more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), plus penalty assessments, for a total of $1500 to $2000,
    informal probation from three to five years
    a three month court-approved alcohol and/or drug education program
    a 6-month driver’s license suspension

The Margarian Law Firm aggressively protects the rights of criminal defendants in California. If you have faced accusations of DUI, it is essential to contact an experienced California defense attorney who is will provide legal assistance. We handle every aspect of your case, from the very start through the very last court hearing, all for a flat fee agreed upon before we begin.

You may file your request online, by telephone or by mail. 818-553-1000

CALIFORNIA VEHICLE CODE

23136. (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.

23140. (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.

23152. (a) It is unlawful for any person who is under the influence of any alcoholic beverage or drug, or under the combined influence of any alcoholic beverage and drug, to drive a vehicle.

(b) It is unlawful for any person who has 0.08 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a vehicle. For purposes of this article and Section 34501.16, percent, by weight, of alcohol in a person’s blood is based upon grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood or grams of alcohol per 210 liters of breath. In any prosecution under this subdivision, it is a rebuttable presumption that the person had 0.08 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood at the time of driving the vehicle if the person had 0.08 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood at the time of the performance of a chemical test within three hours after the driving.

(c) It is unlawful for any person who is addicted to the use of any drug to drive a vehicle. This subdivision shall not apply to a person who is participating in a narcotic treatment program approved pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 11875) of Chapter 1 of Part 3 of Division 10.5 of the Health and Safety Code.

(d) It is unlawful for any person who has 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a commercial motor vehicle, as defined in Section 15210. In any prosecution under this subdivision, it is a rebuttable presumption that the person had 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood at the time of driving the vehicle if the person had 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood at the time of the performance of a chemical test within three hours after the driving.

(e) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2014, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that is enacted before January 1, 2014, deletes or extends that date.

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