Text Us

Driving Under the Influence (DUI)  offenses are crimes in California, and are prosecuted harshly by the California criminal justice system. A DUI conviction could result in  large fines, jail time, and a driver’s license suspension. The consequences can be even more severe if you have prior DUI convictions within the last 10 years, or you had any “aggravating factors.”

At The Nieves Law Firm, our goal is to take the “criminal” out of criminal defense. We understand that a simple mistake like driving home after a few too many drinks can lead to serious problems.  If you are charged with driving under the influence, our Richmond DUI lawyers are dedicated to helping our clients find a legal solution to help them understand the DUI process.

What Constitutes a DUI in Richmond?

In California, it is not illegal to drink and drive but it is illegal to drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, according to  Vehicle Code §23152. A person is legally “under the influence” of alcohol if they operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) over .08 percent or when the drug or alcohol causes them to drive in a manner that is not consistent with how a sober person would drive.  If the individual is operating a commercial motor vehicle, they are considered “under the influence” of alcohol with a BAC over .04 percent.

What about driving a vehicle under the influence of drugs? The Vehicle Code listed above also explains that it is unlawful for any person who is under the influence of any drug to drive a vehicle. This includes driving a vehicle while under the influence of marijuana. If you were charged with a DUI as a result of marijuana use, or even prescription drug use, a Richmond DUI lawyer could work with you to determine the best course of action in your case.

What are the Penalties for Driving Under the Influence in Richmond?

The penalties for a DUI conviction in California are based on several factors.  The number of prior DUI offenses the individual has and whether or not you had any aggravating factors like excessive speeds, collisions, high blood alcohol levels, or minors in the vehicle.

  • A first offense DUI without any aggravating factors is punishable by a fine up to $1,000, up to six months in jail, an ignition interlock device, a 3-month DUI school, and a driver’s license suspension.
  • The penalties for a second DUI conviction include a fine of up to $1,000, up to one year in jail, an ignition interlock device (IID), an 18-month DUI school, and imposition of a driver’s license suspension that can last up to two years.
  • A third offense DUI is punishable by a fine up to $1,000, a minimum jail sentence of 120 days up to one year, an IID, a 30-month DUI school and a 3-year driver’s license suspension.
  • A fourth DUI can be charged as a felony and can include penalties such as a minimum of 180 days to up to three years in jail, a 30-month DUI school, designation as a habitual traffic offender, and revocation of driving privileges.

If you are unsure about the penalties you are facing, you should contact a DUI lawyer in Richmond as soon as possible. It is important to note that your punishment may be different depending on whether you had any mitigating or aggravating factors in your case, the age of any prior offenses, and even the length of DUI school completed in the past. A DUI lawyer could help you determine the penalties you are facing and work to build a defense to your charges.

Aggravating Factors in DUI Cases

Aggravating factors are specific details of the crime that increase the severity of the criminal act and can lead to more severe punishments if convicted. Some of the most common aggravating factors are:

  • Prior DUI(s) A prior DUI conviction in the last 10 years will  result in more severe penalties.
  • Causing Injuries or Death Any person driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs could face substantially harsher penalties if they cause serious bodily injury or death while driving under the influence.
  • BAC Over .15 percent – If your BAC at the time of your arrest is over .15 percent you an enhancement can be added for the high blood alcohol which can result in longer DUI schools or additional penalties
  • Minor Passengers – Driving with a minor in your vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol can result in additional jail time pursuant to Vehicle Code §23572 and other terms of probation such as parenting classes.

DUI’s in Richmond, as standalone offenses, can result in many hardships and penalties – installing and maintaining an IID, loss of driving privileges, probation, increased insurance costs, fines and fees, and jail time are just the tip of the iceberg.  If a person is in violation of any aggravating factor, these penalties can increase significantly. A Richmond DUI lawyer at The Nieves Law Firm could look at the details of your case and help you build a defense to your DUI charges and mitigate your exposure. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with a member of our team.

Contact The Nieves Law Firm

At The Nieves Law Firm, we have experience handling DUI cases and we understand just how severe their penalties can be. These penalties can have significant long term effects on the lives of our clients and we take them just as seriously as they do. A Richmond DUI attorney at The Nieves Law Firm can consider the details of your case, your goals, and the evidence available to build a defense strategy that is tailored to you. Contact The Nieves Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation.

Top-Rated Criminal Defense Lawyers Serving the Bay Area

The Nieves Law Firm is dedicated to providing aggressive criminal defense representation to working professionals who have found themselves in trouble with the law. We show up to win, and we’re not afraid to fight aggressively to accomplish our client’s goals.

We understand that being accused of a crime can be a scary and confusing experience. That’s why we take the stress off our clients by handling the full scope of their legal situation from the initial consultation to the final outcome. Our bilingual attorneys and staff are here to ensure that our clients feel heard and understood every step of the way.

As one of the largest criminal defense teams in Oakland and the Greater Bay Area, we have the resources and experience to handle even the most complex cases. Our experienced team examines various aspects of your case and, perhaps most importantly, we genuinely care about our clients and their future. We take the time to learn about their goals and priorities so that we can achieve an outcome that allows them to move past their mistakes and focus on the future they want. When you work with us, you become part of our team.

Our Team

Our skilled criminal defense attorneys have experience handling a wide range of criminal cases. With a deep understanding of the legal system and a track record of successful cases, our lawyers are committed to achieving the best possible outcome in your case.

Meet Our Team

Our Criminal Defense Attorneys: How to Take Back Control of Your Life, And Your Future.

When facing a criminal charge, having dedicated and experienced attorneys on your side is critical. At The Nieves Law Firm, we understand the gravity of your situation, and our criminal defense attorneys provide unwavering support and legal guidance.

From the moment you reach out to us, we prioritize your well-being and legal interests. Our criminal lawyers are with you every step of the way, from arrest to hearings and beyond, to ensure that your rights are protected. Whether you’re facing charges related to DUI, drug offenses, assault, sex crimes or any other allegation, we have the knowledge and courtroom experience to fight vigorously on your behalf.

We believe in the power of collaboration and will actively involve you in the decision-making process, ensuring you are well-informed and empowered to make the best choices for your defense. Our goal is not only to navigate the legal complexities but also to provide you with the peace of mind and reassurance you deserve during this challenging time.

Contact Us

Give us a call or contact us online so we can schedule a meeting to discuss your legal needs.

Schedule a Meeting

Schedule a meeting with our intake coordinator so we can determine the best plan to solve your legal problems.

Take Back Your Life

We work to resolve your legal problems so you can focus on what is most important



Why You Can Trust Us with Your Future

Our Criminal Defense Practice Areas

Our videos

Going to Court?

See All Courts