Ventura DUI Attorneys

Former Deputy District Attorney for Ventura County is On Your Side

Ventura DUI attorneys, at The Law Offices of Douglas H. Ridley, know that anyone can make a mistake and be left with the consequences from driving under the influence (DUI). If you have been arrested for DUI charges in Ventura, working with a compassionate, knowledgeable attorney can make a world of difference when it comes to navigating your way through the legal system. After facing a night in jail and all of the ramifications from your arrest, you may feel you have nowhere left to turn and no one is on your side. This is why it’s important to have the expertise of a Ventura DUI attorney.  Led by former Deputy District Attorney for Ventura County, Doug Ridley is the legal expert to help you get through this process.

Doug Ridley is a Ventura DUI attorney who can assist with all of your court and DMV questions, as related to your DUI case.  If you are in Ventura and out for a night on the town at Anacapa Brewing Co., Barrel 33 Bar, Bernadette’s on Main or Dargan’s Irish Pub & Restaurant, your chances of getting a DUI are pretty high. Or, perhaps you’re just going to dinner and you have couple of glasses of wine at The Cave or the Watermark on Main, you could very well be over the legal limit.

What to Expect: Ventura DUI Case

Although each case is different, the Superior Court of Ventura County  maintains jurisdiction of cases tried within Ventura County. Whether you are being tried in Simi Valley East County Courthouse or the Ventura Hall of Justice, the Law Offices of Douglas H. Ridley will handle your case in a professional manner. For the first-time offender, a standard case usually includes: 48 hours of Ventura County jail, formal probation for 36 months, zero tolerance policy (no alcohol while driving during probation), willingness to test for alcohol at any time during probation, obey all laws during probation and agree to fines and fees.

Fines and fees for a first time Ventura DUI are almost $4000. For a first time offense, a Ventura DUI also requires a DMV case for drinking and driving. This 3-month class costs $843.00. In addition to the court case, the DMV will want to take your license for six months.  It is critical that you call the Law Offices of Douglas H. Ridley immediately to put a hold on this process.  This has to happen within ten days of your arrest, unless we make a special plea to the DMV.  We can make a phone call that will put a freeze on any action the DMV will take by demanding a hearing for you.  Demanding the hearing will give us a chance to review your case, and will give you more time to regroup following your arrest.  Unless we demand this hearing, the DMV will automatically take your license thirty days following your arrest

Once we contact the DMV, the Driver’s Safety department will conduct a hearing pursuant to the California Vehicle Code section 13353.2. This department is responsible for determining the following areas, including CVC 33533.2(a): “The department shall immediately suspend the privilege of a person to operate a motor vehicle for any of the following reasons:”

  1. The person was driving a motor vehicle when the person had 0.08 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood.
  2. The person was under 21 years of age and had a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.01 percent or greater, as measured by preliminary alcohol screening or a chemical test.
  3. The person was driving a vehicle that requires a commercial driver’s license when the person had 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood.
  4. The person was driving a motor vehicle when both of the following conditions applied (the person was on probation for violation of Section 23152 or 23153 and the person had 0.01 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood

DMV Hearing for a DUI in Ventura

For the hearing, the standard of proof is governed by the California Vehicle Code section 13353.2(e) including “The determination of the facts in subdivision (a) is a civil matter that is independent of the determination of the person’s guilt or innocence, shall have no collateral estoppel effect on a subsequent proceeding.” Basically, this process is completely separate from the criminal process of your case. And, it is only subject to the standard of proof in a civil case: a preponderance of the evidence. A DMV employee will review your case and will determine if you were driving with over .08 blood alcohol content.  If you were, DMV will make the decision to suspend your driver’s license, regardless of what the outcome is in the criminal case.

Even if the DMV makes the decision to suspend your license, however, the Law Offices of Douglas H. Ridley can help you get it back.  You will receive nothing from the DMV that describes this process, but because of our years of experience in handling these cases, we know how to work the system for your benefit.

Once your license has been suspended, we will work with you through the process to restore your driving privilege:  paying a $125 reissue fee to the DMV, file proof of insurance by getting an SR22 from your insurance company and enrolling in a DMV DUI program for 3 months, pursuant to Health and Safety Code section 11836, which states that “the department will have the sole authority to issue, deny, suspend or revoke the license of a driving-under-the-influence program.” With a first-offense, after your license is suspended for a 30 day timeframe, you can request a restricted license. This restricted license allows you to drive back and forth to work, drive in the course and scope of your employment, and back and forth to your DUI program.

If you decide to apply for a restricted license, you will have five months of your license being restricted, following your initial 30 days of suspension. If, however, you opt not to apply for a license restriction, then you will have your license suspended for four to six months, depending on the action of the court.

As you can see, getting arrested for a first-offense DUI in Ventura is a complex process. Consult the Law Offices of Douglas H. Ridley as soon as possible for professional advice.

March 6, 2013