What happens when you get a 2nd DUI in California?

My brother got his second DUI, it was a car accident. His girlfriend had to go to the hospital. The police took him. What is going to happen to him? Any body had a similar experience? What happened? The car was my moms. The car only had liability insurance. According to my brother, the car that hit him did a hit and run.

An intoxicated driver is not considered "automatically at fault" in an accident, but some insurance policies will not cover a driver if he is intoxicated. If his driving proximately caused the injuries to his passenger, he will be charged with felony DUI (Veh C 23153). With his prior conviction of DUI he would be facing a minimum of 120 days in jail, and a maximum of three years in prison, a fine of up to $20,000, and a three year revocation of his driver’s license.

If he bore no responsibility for the accident, he is looking at a minimum of four days in jail, a maximum of one year, a fine of up to $4,000, and a two year suspension of his driver’s license.

His mother’s insurance will not be cancelled based upon his driving–though the company may not insure him in the future. The three strikes law has nothing to do with this. His prior DUI is not a felony, and therefore not a strike. Even a felony DUI is not a strike.

He needs a lawyer.

ADD: Kapsack is wrong in claiming that a prior conviction makes no difference. It does. With no prior conviction, the minimum custody time for a violation of Veh C 23153 is 5 days. With a prior conviction the minimum time is 120 days. Quite a difference. He is correct that the charge could be filed as a misdemeanor, but the minimum term is the same, and with a prior I would think a felony filing is more likely.

8 Responses to “What happens when you get a 2nd DUI in California?”

  • Frank says:

    Your brother has a very serious alcohol problem. He’s clearly in denial, but the family probably is, too.

    His only chance of not going to jail for a very long time is to show the judge that he is dealing with his alcohol problem by getting treatment before his trial.

    In California, the intoxicated driver is considered automatically at fault.

    Here’s what will happen. If the other driver shows up, the other driver will successfully sue your brother (as the driver) and your mother (as the owner of the car). His girlfriend’s health insurance will sue your brother and mother to recover. Her insurance will pay most of this. (The insurance companies will work out a settlement without actually suing, but your mother’s insurance company will pay.)

    Your mother’s insurance will be cancelled, and your brother will lose his license. If your brother or mother manage to ever get car insurance again, it will be unbelievably expensive.

    It’s time to wise up and force your brother to deal with his alcohol problem.
    References :

  • Richard says:

    lol fail
    References :

  • Ronnie says:

    California has the three stricks your out law. Even if he gets through this one on the next offense he goes straight to prison for a long time. Why is he drinking and driving in the first place? If his girlfriend had to go to the hospital there is this thing called an ambulance or get someone else to drive if your intoxicated. I know for a fact the insurance will cancel him in a heart beat since he is too much of a liability issue.
    References :

  • John S says:

    An intoxicated driver is not considered "automatically at fault" in an accident, but some insurance policies will not cover a driver if he is intoxicated. If his driving proximately caused the injuries to his passenger, he will be charged with felony DUI (Veh C 23153). With his prior conviction of DUI he would be facing a minimum of 120 days in jail, and a maximum of three years in prison, a fine of up to $20,000, and a three year revocation of his driver’s license.

    If he bore no responsibility for the accident, he is looking at a minimum of four days in jail, a maximum of one year, a fine of up to $4,000, and a two year suspension of his driver’s license.

    His mother’s insurance will not be cancelled based upon his driving–though the company may not insure him in the future. The three strikes law has nothing to do with this. His prior DUI is not a felony, and therefore not a strike. Even a felony DUI is not a strike.

    He needs a lawyer.

    ADD: Kapsack is wrong in claiming that a prior conviction makes no difference. It does. With no prior conviction, the minimum custody time for a violation of Veh C 23153 is 5 days. With a prior conviction the minimum time is 120 days. Quite a difference. He is correct that the charge could be filed as a misdemeanor, but the minimum term is the same, and with a prior I would think a felony filing is more likely.
    References :
    35+ years as a criminal defense attorney

  • Top Source says:

    In NJ, it would be at least 2 months in jail.
    References :

  • Kapsack & Bair - DUI Lawyers says:

    Depending on the injuries involved, your brother may be looking at a felony. Whether this is a second offense is irrelevant, DUI with injury is a "wobbler" that can be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor. If it is a misdemeanor he could be looking at up to one year in county jail although it likely would be less, a felony starts at a year and goes up. He needs a DUI defense attorney in his area to help him determine what the best path forward is.
    References :
    http:/www.kandblaw.com, over 15 years exclusive DUI defense

  • ornery and mean says:

    He really needs a lawyer that is very familiar with California laws and DUI defenses.

    He is in a very tight spot, facing potentially thousands of dollars in fines and maybe even jail time. I’m just guessing here, that’s why you need a lawyer that knows exactly what your brother is facing and maybe has the expertise to help him out. Most of the people here would guess, not good enough! He needs somebody that knows.
    References :

  • Kyle A says:

    You can get jail time, license suspension, Interlock device installation, community service, alcohol evaluation classes, but it depends on the circumstances, prior record. This doesn’t sound good, especially since your brother’s passenger was injured in an accident.

    I’m not sure who would pay for medical bills, it would be the liability coverage, but if he’s claiming that he’s not at fault they may try to not pay.

    You should talk to an attorney, you can get a free consultation and see what you are really up against.
    References :
    http://www.avvo.com/dui-dwi-lawyer/ca.html

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