You could go to jail in California if convicted of driving under the influence (DUI). The amount of time you could spend behind bars increases with each conviction. So, how long do you go to jail for a second DUI in California?
You may end up going to jail for a year. However, this is the maximum amount of time for a second “simple” DUI. The amount of time you spend incarcerated may vary. Get more information about incarceration after a DUI with this article.
The Minimum Amount of Time for a Second DUI in California
The California court system sentences drivers convicted of a second DUI to a minimum of 96 hours in jail. Note that this does not mean your second DUI in your entire life. DUIs are priorable. They stay on your record for ten years. After ten years, the DUI comes off and does not count against you anymore. Therefore, if you had a DUI 11 years ago, it no longer counts as a “first” DUI.
You should be aware that the 96-hour minimum only applies to simple DUIs. Simple DUIs occur if you are pulled over for driving while under the influence without hurting anyone. Your DUI may result in harsher penalties if you injured or killed someone.
Maximum Amounts of Jail Time for a Second DUI
The court may only sentence you to 98 hours in jail after a DUI conviction. However, this is not guaranteed. You could spend much more time incarcerated in some situations. The court could order you to spend one year in jail, even for a simple DUI.
You may spend more time in jail if accused of hurting or killing another driver. A felony conviction for DUI with injury could lead to up to 10 years in prison. A conviction for vehicular manslaughter may lead to four years of prison time. Gross vehicular manslaughter may result in life in prison in some cases.
Make sure you take any felony DUI accusation seriously. Get help reviewing your charges for a DUI lawyer. Call (310) 929-6503 to speak to a law firm about your defense.
Additional Penalties for a Second DUI in California
Jail time is not the only penalty for a DUI in California. The court uses multiple punishments for drivers convicted of a DUI. It could fine you thousands of dollars or require you to:
- Attend either an 18- or 30-month DUI education program
- Install an ignition interlock device (IID) on your vehicle
- Remain on probation for three or five years
The court must approve the DUI education program you attend. You must generally participate in all classes as a condition of your probation. The court decides how long you must go to DUI school. Make sure you understand the terms of your probation to avoid a probation violation.
Note that IIDs are now used across the state of California in DUI cases. An IID is a personal breathalyzer device. It attaches to your vehicle. You must put a device on all vehicles registered in your name and all vehicles you drive regularly. Operating a vehicle without an IID could result in the suspension of your license.
Get Help Handling a Second DUI Charge in California
As you can see, the results of a second conviction for a DUI may be severe. You can get help handling these charges by contacting a DUI lawyer. Your lawyer may work to get your charges reduced, allowing you to avoid some of the harsh penalties for a DUI conviction.
California courts will sometimes dismiss DUI charges. A dismissed DUI does not count against you or lead to any jail time. Your lawyer could also support you in court, arguing that you were not guilty of a DUI. A not-guilty sentence from a judge and jury allows you to move forward without jail time.
Speak to a Lawyer About Jail Time for a Second DUI
How long do you go to jail for a second DUI in California? You may go to jail for as little as 98 hours for a simple DUI. You could end up going to prison for life if you hurt or killed someone in the DUI. Find out more about your specific situation with the Simmrin Law Group. We may offer you a free consultation about your legal case.
Call us at (310) 929-6503. You may also fill out our online contact form.