Out of State DUI Convictions.
If you were charged with a DUI in another state within the last ten years, your chances of having your recent California DUI charged only as a first conviction depend on the specific laws of the other state.
In order for your first conviction to count as a prior in the state of California, the state that first arrested you must classify a DUI with all the same elements as a California DUI. For example, you can only be convicted of a DUI in California if you were operating your vehicle. In other words, you have to have actually been driving your car. In some states, however, you need only to be in control of your vehicle, meaning your car doesn't even have to be running. You just have to be inside the vehicle and have possession of the keys required to operate it.
Differences like these could save you from the more severe consequences of a second conviction. If you think the California DMV may be wrongfully charging your first conviction as a prior, contact a lawyer to evaluate your unique situation. You may be able to challenge this charge by filing a Writ of Mandamus--a move that could spare you the major headache of a second conviction.
Let the skilled attorneys at Netzah & Shem-Tov take a look at your case and help you determine your best options. Even if a second conviction cannot be avoided, we will fight tirelessly to ensure your judgment is as light as possible.