Sometimes drivers convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) in California are unhappy with the outcome of their case. In this situation, you may wonder if you can reopen a DUI case in California. It is possible for some DUI cases to be reopened, but only in a few situations.
Review the regulations on reopening a DUI case with the professionals at the Simmrin Law Group. Focus on the legal outcomes of reopening your case. Get legal assistance quickly with a DUI charge by reaching out to us at (310) 997-4688.
Regulations on Reopening a DUI Case in California
First of all, it is important that you understand that not all DUI cases in California can be reopened. Generally, a DUI case can only be reopened if:
- You file a Motion to Vacate Judgement EITHER
- Before the court sentences you OR
- Within six months of your probationary period AND
- You can demonstrate “good cause” for the case to be reopened
Note that if you are serving a jail or prison sentence you are not generally allowed to file a Motion to Vacate Judgement. The Motion to Vacate Judgement is the legal procedure that allows for the reopening of your DUI case in this situation.
Functions of a Motion to Vacate Judgement for DUIs
A criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles may file a Motion to Vacate Judgement if you wish to:
- Withdraw a “guilty” plea OR
- Withdraw a “no contest” plea AND
- Enter a plea of “not guilty”
Your lawyer may also call a Motion to Vacate Judgement a Motion to Withdraw a Plea. In simple terms, a Motion to Vacate Judgement allows you to erase a previous guilty or no contest plea, so you can plead not guilty to a DUI and restart your court case.
Good Cause and Motions to Vacate Judgement
The court system will not automatically reopen all DUI cases, simply because someone files a Motion to Vacate Judgment. Drivers must demonstrate good cause to reopen their DUI cases. Generally, drivers have good cause if they made their plea in the case due to:
Specifically, the court may agree that you have good cause to reopen your DUI case in California if you entered a plea:
- Without the representation of a DUI lawyer
- With the representation of an incompetent lawyer
- Without understanding the plea’s consequences
- After being coerced into accepting the plea
If you believe you did not understand the consequences of pleading guilty or no contest to a DUI charge, you can get help today from a criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles. The team at the Simmrin Law Group may be able to help you file a Motion to Vacate Judgement. Call (310) 997-4688 to find out if your DUI case can be reopened.
Results of Reopening a DUI Case in California
Reopening a DUI case in California does not mean that the case will automatically be resolved in your favor. A Motion to Vacate Judgement only allows you to start your criminal case over, beginning with your arraignment hearing.
You may enter a new plea of not guilty if your DUI case is reopened. At this point, a DUI lawyer in Los Angeles can work to resolve your charges. A legal professional can work to build a defense for your reopened case. Your lawyer may take steps to show that:
- You were not impaired by alcohol at the time of your arrest
- Your blood alcohol content (BAC) was not over the legal limit
- You were stopped without reasonable cause by a law enforcement officer
Your lawyer may also work to get your charges reduced or dismissed in some situations.
Consider a DUI Charge Expungement in California
Some drivers convicted of a DUI seek to get their charges expunged, instead of reopening their case. Expungement clears your criminal record of a DUI conviction. However, you must wait until after you have completed DUI probation to seek expungement.
You can speak to the Simmrin Law Group today to find out if an expungement would work in your case. Consider whether or not you should seek to reopen your DUI case by reaching out to us today.
A Lawyer Can Help You Reopen a DUI Case
You can reopen a DUI case in California in some situations. Reopening your case with a Motion to Vacate Judgement allows you to restart your case with a not guilty plea. You can find out more about reopening a DUI case by contacting the Simmrin Law Group today. Just call (310) 997-4688 or complete our online contact form.
Our DUI lawyers in Los Angeles can offer you a FREE initial case evaluation to find out if you have good cause to reopen your case.