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In my experience, the majority of Marin County DUI cases deal with two elements:

  1. What was the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level at the time of driving?
  2. What was the driving like?

What was the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level at the time of driving:

This issue does not simply mean what was your breathalyzer or blood result. This means a thorough examination of the evidence needs to begin. There are certain issues with this step, such as:

  1. If you took a breathalyzer, was it calibrated properly and administered in a lawful manner? If it was not calibrated properly, then obviously the BAC result is not reliable. If it was not administered lawfully, then the same conclusion is reached.
  2. Was your blood alcohol level rising? Just because the breathalyzer or blood test shows a certain result, that does not mean it is an accurate portrayal of where you were at the actual time of driving. Alcohol takes time to absorb into your bloodstream, and not until it is in your bloodstream is there actually impairment. Therefore, if you get pulled over at midnight, take the breathalyzer at 12:15 am, and then the blood test at 12:45 am, your blood alcohol level can be rising that entire time, depending on when you had your last drink. This is not a DUI attorney trick, it’s science.
  3. If you took a blood test, was the blood tested properly? Was it taken by someone with the proper credentials to take blood? This is all relevant as to the reliability of blood test evidence.
  1. What was the driving like? — This issue encompasses a wide range of defenses.
  • First and foremost, was there actually a legitimate reason to pull you over? If there was no reasonable suspicion of criminal activity, then the initial stop was in violation of your 4thAmendment right against unlawful search and seizure. This is where obtaining the patrol car video and witness’s statements are crucial. If they had no reason to pull you over, then the case should be dismissed.
  • Were you actually driving? In today’s day and age the number of DUI arrests where the officers never actually saw any driving are in abundance. Many times, a citizen will call the police informing them of a potential drunk driver. This realty opens up many questions as to the lawfulness of the arrest. Did the police actually have probable cause to make an arrest and more importantly, can the prosecution actually prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were actually driving the vehicle impaired?
  • Were you pulled over for a reason independent of driving, such as:
    • Expired tags
    • Sobriety checkpoints
    • No front license plate – Most law enforcement are unfamiliar with the requirements of this statute. Not having a front license plate is always cited under Vehicle Code 5200. That code section makes it unlawful to not have a front license plate, but only if the DMV actually issued two license plates, if the DMV issued only one, the license plate should be affixed to the rear.  Therefor, in order to conduct a lawful stop, law enforcement should check the back of the vehicle as well before instigating a detention of the vehicle. Most juries will be shocked when it becomes apparent that the officer is not familiar with the requirements of the code section.
    • No license plate light

It is always a big fact in the defenses favor if there was no poor driving. It makes a DUI case more difficult to prove for the prosecution.

These are just some of the issues that come with every DUI matter. For more information contact DUI Attorney Michael Rehm for a free consultation at (415) 251-1680.
Upon a conviction for driving under the influence the DMV will suspend your drivers license. The length of the suspension depends on several factors, including::

    1. Whether this a first offense or if you are multiple offender
    2. Your blood alcohol content level.

If this is a first offense DUI you will be eligible for a restricted license 30 days after the suspension starts. In order to obtain a restricted license you must:

      1. Wait the thirty day period;
      2. Enroll in the First Offender Alcohol Education program
      3. Obtain an SR-22, and have it on file with the DMV
      4. Physically go into the DMV and pay the reissue fee to obtain a restricted license.

When you enroll in the first offender program and obtain your SR-22, this information is supposed to be electronically forwarded to the DMV. In my experience it is a wise practice to have these documents on you when you actually go to the DMV to obtain your restricted license.

The DMV hearing and the consequences of a DUI conviction are essential knowledge for any attorney practicing in the area of DUI Defense. For more information on this aspect of the law, contact Michael Rehm at (415) 251-1680 for a free consultation.


Marin County Court

Marin County District Attorney

Marin County Probation

Oceanside Personal Injury Attorney

Carlsbad DUI Attorney

Marin County Alcohol Education Program:  There is only one in Marin County:

Bay Area Community Resources, Inc
103 Shoreline Parkway, Suite 201
San Rafael, CA 94901
Phone: (415) 453-9980
Fax: (415) 453-6137

Please note that if you are convicted of a DUI, the court will allow you to attend the DUI school in any county in California you desire. So if you live in Marin, but work in San Francisco, and it would be easier to take the program in San Francisco, the court will not have a problem with that.

Marin County DUI Plea and Waiver Forms

For any attorneys reading, Marin County has no specific Plea in Absentia form. You must create your own.

Marin County DMV Driver Safety Office – the San Francisco branch handles all Marin County DUI cases.

Marin County Alcoholics Anonymous Meetings