Second Offense DUI In California

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Second Offense DUI in California

If you or a loved one has been charged with a second offense DUI, you should immediately call Southern California and Los Angeles DUI attorneys at The H Law Group. We have a group of attorneys who exclusively handle DUI, DWI, and Drunk Driving cases, they have the experience and knowledge to achieve the best possible legal outcome for you. If you’ve already been convicted of a DUI for the first time, you should know that being charged with a DUI for a second time is more complicated.

If you’re convicted of a DUI or drunk driving for a second time, you should know that the law mandates certain enhancements and added punishment. Judges and prosecutors take second DUI offenses more seriously because they believe that the first punishment was not enough to deter you, so they will try a harsher punishment in order to prevent you from committing another DUI or DWI. So, if you have been charged with a second California DUI, you should immediately contact the experienced drunk driving attorneys at The H Law Group to represent you and safeguard your legal rights. Schedule your free consultation by filling out the contact form below or by calling us at 1 (213) 370-0404.

You should know that a second time DUI or second offense DUI is only considered a second offense DUI if this is your second time being convicted of a DUI within a ten (10) year period. To convict you of a second offense DUI, the prosecution needs to show that you were convicted of a prior DUI or California or another state. If the prosecution finds that you had a DUI more than ten years ago, you will be charged with a first offense DUI and not a second offense DUI. 

That said, if you have had a previous DUI, even if it was more than ten years ago, the prosecution may not be as willing to negotiate lesser punishment since you have previously been convicted of a DUI, yet you still continued to drink and drive. This may signal to the prosecution that you may have an alcohol or drug problem, and while they may want you to seek treatment, they also want to punish you to prevent you from continuing to drive while under the influence of alcohol and or drugs.


Second-time DUI offenders must spend a mandatory ninety-six (96) hours in jail. The offense carries a maximum punishment of one (1) year in county jail. This mandatory jail time is not imposed on first-time offenders, only on second-time offenders. Also, probation for a second-time offender is usually set at five years, and the offender will be ordered to complete an alcohol/drug treatment program. Also, there is a two (2) year license restriction for second-time offenders. 

That said, the punishment is more severe for persons who are charged with a second time DUI in Orange County and Riverside County because they are more strict and offer more severe punishments. As far as fines go, courts typically impose higher fines for second offense drunk drivers that can easily exceed $2,000. Also, the judge can order you to perform mandatory community service and/or having to attend alcoholics anonymous meetings. Punishments are harsh, so to ensure that your legal rights are protected, you should hire the experienced second offense DUI attorney at The H Law Group. They will do their best to obtain the best possible outcome for you.

If it happens that you’re charged and convicted of a second DUI while you’re still on probation for the first one, you will face additional sentencing and penalties because not only have you committed a second DUI, you’ve done so while violating the terms of the first DUI. So, additional penalties are typically imposed, in addition to jail time.


If you’ve been arrested for a second DUI offense, you should know that the license suspension is longer for a second time DUI. The license suspension for a first time offender who did not refuse the station chemical test is a mandatory four months. However, for a second offense, a DUI offender is a mandatory to twelve (12) month suspension. For a first time DUI offense, an offender may be able to obtain a restricted license after a 30-day hard suspension during which the individual cannot drive for the first 30 days, but can then apply for a restricted license to drive from work to home and vice versa.


A second DUI offense is similar to a first DUI offense in that an individual has ten (10) days from the day of the arrest to schedule a DMV hearing to contest the suspension of your driver’s license. You should not attend this hearing alone; you should have an experienced DUI attorney to attend it with you because losing this hearing means that your license will be suspended for 12 months if you do not win at the DMV hearing. Schedule your free consultation with a DUI Lawyer at The H Law Group. 


If this is your second offense DUI, you should immediately contact a Los Angeles DUI Lawyer to represent you in court and represent you at your DMV hearing. As previously mentioned, not scheduling your DMV hearing within the ten following your arrest will result in a one year suspension of your driver’s license. As such, it is imperative that you contact an experienced DUI attorney to represent you in court and fight for you throughout the criminal process.