California provides information about charges for driving under the influence (DUI) in several ways. For example, some drivers receive paperwork related to their DUI at the time of their arrest. Others are given information about future court dates after they are released on bail or their recognizance.
Some drivers in California must wait to get information in the mail about a DUI charge. You can use this article to review how long it can take to be mailed a DUI in California. Then, contact our law firm to learn more about your DUI charge.
Getting Information About a DUI in the Mail
You might receive information about your DUI in the mail if you were stopped for a DUI but not immediately charged in California. You may end up waiting a long time to find out about a DUI through the mail, as the court allows prosecutors to take:
- One year to file charges for a misdemeanor DUI
- Three years to file charges for a felony DUI
After the above periods of time, the statute of limitations for DUI charges expires in California. Therefore, DUI charges could technically arrive through the mail any time after your initial arrest and up until the statute of limitations expires.
The Time it Takes to Receive Notification in the Mail Depends on Several Factors
Waiting for a DUI notification in the mail can be stressful and frustrating since it can leave you unsure of the status of your driver’s license and any impact it might have on your criminal record. It can also be a shock and surprise to receive notification for a potential DUI that occurred long ago and may have been forgotten.
Some factors that can affect the timeline between being suspected of DUI and notified of a DUI can include:
- The time it takes for the prosecutor to receive your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) test results
- The time it takes for the prosecutor to build their case, including interviewing witnesses
- The time it takes for the prosecutor to speak to the investigating officers and review available evidence
The timing of your mailed DUI notification can also depend on the time it takes to file a case against you in court and establish a hearing or other court date or appearance. If you received a DUI by mail, take immediate action regardless of how long it took.
If the state’s case was filed within the statute of limitations, a lawyer in your area could help you build a credible defense or use other methods to mitigate the potential damage of a conviction. If a case was filed against you after the statute of limitations expired, a lawyer could help you fight to have the charges against you dismissed.
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What if I Never Receive the Appropriate Notification in the Mail?
If you were pulled over for suspected DUI and were told to expect notification by mail, you should not assume nothing was done simply because you did not receive such mail.
Consider consulting a DUI or criminal defense attorney who can help you investigate other avenues by which you may have been notified, start preparing a defense, and ensure:
- All applicable timelines are met to protect your driving privileges
- You are aware of — and comply with — all potential court dates
Your criminal defense attorney can also fight to negotiate potential plea agreements that can reduce the charge you face and reduce potential penalties.
DUI Charges and Bench Warrants Throughout California
You should be aware that you will not always be informed about a DUI charge through the mail. In many areas throughout California, DUI charges may not be mailed. This may be more likely if the court system does not have your proper address on file.
The court might issue a bench warrant for you instead of mailing out a DUI charge. Bench warrants appear on your public record and give police officers the right to arrest you. For example, you could be arrested if you are stopped for a traffic violation. Law enforcement officers may also visit your home or business to arrest you.
Once you are arrested, you may be brought before a judge. The judge may then inform you of your DUI charges and provide information about subsequent hearings that you must attend. You may sometimes be jailed after being brought in on a bench warrant in California.
Whether you have received notification of the charge or not, you should contact a DUI lawyer in Burbank after any traffic stop concerning a DUI. An experienced lawyer can review your case and advise you of your options.
Types of DUI Charges You Could Face in California
Driving under the influence in California is a serious and costly offense and can mean many different things. If you are facing a DUI, you need to understand the specific charges against you.
DUI charges can mean:
- Your car will be impounded and incur costly fees
- Your license will be suspended or revoked
- You will be required to install an Ignition Interlock Device on your vehicle
- You will be required to enroll in a DUI education program
- You will incur additional fees for SR-22 insurance
- You will face misdemeanor or felony charges and possible conviction
If you are an underage driver or the parent of one facing DUI charges, additional penalties may apply, including a delay in obtaining a first driver’s license.
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You Can Seek Information About a DUI Charge
You do not have to wait for the court system to mail you a DUI charge. If you were stopped for a DUI and believe you will be facing a DUI charge, you could contact the office of your local District Attorney.
The District Attorney’s office can tell you if they have a case filed with your name and date of birth. They can also provide information about hearing dates if any have been set. It is highly recommended that you keep a physical record of:
- The dates when you called the District Attorney’s office
- The name(s) of anyone you spoke to at the office
- The exact information the office provided you
However, you should not discuss your case with anyone at the District Attorney’s office without talking first with a criminal defense lawyer in California. Everything you say can be used against you. Get further advice about how to ask about your charges by contacting us today.
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Move Quickly After a DUI Charge in California
In many cases, you can strengthen your odds of beating a DUI charge in California by getting help immediately after you are arrested instead of waiting to receive information in the mail. For example, you only have ten days after your arrest to request a DUI hearing with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
If you do not request your DMV hearing in time, your license will be automatically suspended in 30 days. Getting help immediately from a DUI lawyer in California can help you protect your driving privileges. Your lawyer can also update you on the status of your charges while working aggressively to develop your defense.
Get Help with Your Charges by Contacting a California DUI Attorney Today
It can take a long time to get a DUI in the mail in California. You might not even receive DUI charges in the mail in some situations. However, you can take proactive steps to learn more about any charges you face by contacting Simmrin Law Group. Just complete our online contact form or call our office.
Our DUI attorneys can assess the unique facts of your case with a free initial case evaluation.