Los Angeles DUI Attorney

  • DUI – Alcohol
  • DUI – Drugs 
  • DUI – Refusals
  • DMV Hearings
  • Out-of-State Drivers
  • Commercial Licenses
  • Multiple Offender DUI
  • Felony DUI
  • Vehicular Manslaughter
  • Watson Murder

DUI Lawyer

Attorney Debra S. White is an extensively experienced and highly skilled DUI Lawyer with an incredible record defending against DUI charges both in the criminal court and with the DMV. She has personally represented hundreds of clients charged with DUI and is known for consistently obtaining superior results for those accused of driving under the influence.

DUI /DWI Charges

DUI charges are criminal matters that are fought in criminal court. They are not traffic matters that should be taken lightly. A DUI conviction can result in loss of freedom, driver’s license, employment, reputation, and much more.

A person can be convicted of DUI in California if either one of the following are proven:
1) A person drove while impaired by either alcohol and/or drugs, or
2) A person drove with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher.

Arrested for Drunk Driving?

Driver’s License Suspensions
California DMV

People charged with DUI in California face two different license suspensions or revocations:

1) DMV will suspend your driver’s license if you receive a court conviction for DUI.

2) DMV will suspend your license if you lose the DMV administrative hearing, and/or fail to request a hearing within 10 days of your arrest.


In California, if you are arrested for a DUI, your driver’s license will be immediately confiscated by law enforcement officials. At this time, you will be issued a temporary permit that is good for 30 days. The only way to keep your driving privileges after the 30 day period is to schedule a hearing with the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). You have ten days from the date of your arrest to schedule this DMV hearing, called an Administrative Per Se (APS) hearing. Failure to do so will result in the automatic suspension of your driver’s license for up to four months for a first DUI offender, or up to one year or longer if you refused to take a chemical test or have prior DUI convictions within 10 years.

The length of the driver’s license suspension depends on the nature of the charge, any prior DUI history of the licensee, and any prior DUI- related DMV administrative proceedings against the licensee. It is possible for two license suspensions to run concurrent with one another, but no credit is given from one suspension toward the other. A licensee may be eligible to apply for a restricted license. A restricted license only allows for driving to and from the required alcohol program, to and from work, and for the purposes of work.

At the DMV hearing, a representative from the DMV will act as both the judge and the prosecutor in order to determine whether you are of drunk driving. The DMV representative examines any data, information, or evidence gathered by law enforcement surrounding your arrest. At this time, you and your attorney will also have the opportunity to present witnesses and evidence in your defense. After the representative has evaluated all the facts, testimony, and evidence, he/she she will make a ruling to either sustain the suspension on your driving privileges, or have them reinstated, called a “set-aside” of the license suspension.

You have only 10 days from the date of your arrest to request a DMV hearing or you will automatically lose your license.

DUI / DWI Conviction in California | Punishment

If you have been convicted of DUI in California the consequences you suffer will depend on a number of factors including the county of your conviction, the specific facts about your case, any criminal history, and the attorney who is representing you.

At a minimum, you will face the following statutory mandatory consequences you face if convicted of a DUI in Los Angeles:

1st Offense – No prior DUI or Wet Reckless Conviction

  • Probation: 3-5 years
  • Jail: 0-6 months
  • Fines: $390-$1,000 (plus penalty assessments and court fees)
  • Driver’s License Suspension/Revocation: 4-10 months
  • Alcohol Program: 3-9 months
  • Increase in the cost of car insurance
  • Installation of the Ignition Interlock Device (IID)

2nd Offense – Probation: 3-5 years

  •  Jail: 96 hours to 1 year
  • Fines: $390-$1,000 (plus penalty assessments and court fees)
  • Driver’s License Suspension/Revocation: up to 2 years
  • Rehabilitation/Alcohol Classes: 18 month program
  • Substantial rise in the cost of car insurance or termination
  • Installation of the Ignition Interlock Device (IID)

3rd Offense – Probation: 3-5 years

  •  Jail: 4 months to 1 year
  • Fines: $390-$1,000 (plus penalty assessments and court fees)
  • Driver’s License Suspension/Revocation: up to 3 years
  • Rehabilitation/Alcohol Classes: 18 or 30 month treatment program
  • Substantial rise in cost of car insurance or termination
  • Installation of the Ignition Interlock Device (IID)

4th Offense – You may be charged with a felony

  • Probation: 3-5 years
  • Jail: 6 months to 3 years in prison
  • Fines: $390-$1,000 (plus penalty assessments and court fees)
  • Driver’s License Suspension/Revocation: up to 4 years
  • Rehabilitation/Alcohol Classes: 18 or 30 month treatment program and/or extensive inpatient treatment program
  • Drastic Rise in car insurance or termination
  • Installation of the Ignition Interlock Device (IID)

Harsher penalties may apply in these circumstances:

  • Excessively High BAC
  • Refusal to take a chemical test
  • Commercial Driver
  • Driver is Under 21 years of age
  • Reckless Driving or Excessive Speeding
  • Injury or Death
  • Minor in the Vehicle
  • Hit and Run

Breathalyzer Tests

If you are pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving, you may be asked to take a breathalyzer test. Breathalyzer machines measure a person’s blood alcohol content (BAC). If you blow over the legal limit of .08%, you will be arrested and booked on charges of driving under the influence.

Under the California Implied Consent Law, every driver is required to take a chemical test to determine BAC at the request of a law enforcement officer.

Learn more about Breathalyzer Tests

Drivers have the option of choosing either a breathalyzer test or a blood test. If drugs are suspected to be in the driver’s system, he/she may be required to take a blood or urine test. Refusing to take a chemical test altogether is a violation of the law, and will result in immediate suspension of your driver’s license for up to one year, in addition to other penalties.

Many DUI attorneys and experts believe that breathalyzer machines are not entirely accurate, and that error can occur easily. There are a variety of factors for why breathalyzer machines are inconsistent and not always accurate. These factors include radio frequency interference, calibration errors, human errors, the driver’s weight, gender, age, body temperature, level of fitness, and the cellular composition of his/her blood.

Despite common inaccuracies and error, law enforcement officers are rely on breathalyzer machines as their primary test to determine blood alcohol content. The results of the breathalyzer test are used as evidence against the defendant in both criminal court and the DMV hearing. Experienced Los Angeles and Van Nuys DUI lawyer Debra S. White can challenge the reliability of these machines, and argue the validity of their results.

Field Sobriety Tests

When a person is pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence, they may be required to perform one or more field sobriety test. Field Sobriety Tests were created to help law enforcement officers judge the sobriety of a driver by challenging their physical agility and mind-body coordination.

The 3 most common field sobriety tests are one-leg-stand, walk-and-turn, nystagmus (following an object (like a pen or finger) from side-to-side with your eyes)

Learn more about Field Sobriety Tests

DUI lawyers and experts agree that field sobriety tests are subjective, inaccurate, and designed for failure. In fact, most law enforcement officers don’t even know how to properly administer the test. Furthermore, these tests are based on subjective observation, and there are many innocent reasons why people may not be able to pass these tests, such as:

• Fatigue
• Nervousness
• Intimidation
• Injuries
• Weather
• Traffic distractions
• Weight
• Age
• Natural Coordination
• Clarity of officer’s instructions

Most people don’t realize that field sobriety tests are optional. If you are asked to perform a field sobriety test, you may politely decline without facing legal repercussions. This is highly advisable since the officer will use the test as evidence against you in court and at the DMV hearing. You do not want to give the officer any evidence to use against you, especially when the tests are usually inaccurate and based on subjective opinion.

Know The Lawyer You Hire

Finding the right criminal defense lawyer can be a daunting task. With thousands of lawyers at your fingertips, Ms. White has published an article with easy to follow steps to ensure that you hire the right lawyer.

The lawyer you hire makes a difference.

We have helped countless clients and families.
We can help you too.

Call now for a FREE confidential consultation.
We are available to take your call 24/7.


Los Angeles Office

21112 Ventura Boulevard,
Woodland Hills, CA 91364

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