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What to Expect When You’re Pulled Over for a DUI in CA
Once you have been pulled over, an officer will go through standard procedures to measure whether you’ve been driving while under the influence.
- The Police Stop You — Police will stop you for driving erratically, running a stoplight, having a broken headlight, or for some other traffic violation. If you’ve been pulled over for no reason, you do have the option to bring forward a motion to suppress. This motion may be successful in having the case thrown out of court.
- The Police Approach — The police will note your car’s conditions, your behavior, your passengers’ behavior, as well as any unusual contents or smells. They will request your driver’s license and proof of insurance and might also ask if you’ve been drinking. All the while, the officer will determine whether to search your car.
- Vehicle Search — With your permission, the police will search your car. Should the officer smell drugs or alcohol in the vehicle, they have the right to inspect the entire vehicle.
- Standardized FST Battery (Field Sobriety Tests) — If the police sense or find evidence that you have been driving under the influence, they will ask you to take Field Sobriety Chemical Tests. These include the horizontal gaze test, walk and turn, and the one-leg standing test. According to research, the three FSTs are sufficient to determine if someone is above the BAC of 0.01%.
- Breathalyzer Test — Once an officer is confident that the driver may be under the influence, there will be a breathalyzer test. Drivers must submit to the test under “implied consent” laws. The Supreme Court ruled that blood tests without official warrants were unconstitutional and the driver protected by the 4th amendment. But this ruling does not apply to refusing a chemical, breath, or blood test. Across the country, if you refuse a test, it can mean arrest or license suspension.
- Arrest, Detention, Release — Finally, if the officer has determined that you are driving under the influence, you will be arrested and taken to jail. Your car will be impounded, your license suspended, and you will stay in jail until the court releases you or you’re bailed out.
How Long Will a DUI in California Affect Your Insurance?
A DUI will affect your insurance, driving record and may result in a criminal record. Typically, insurance companies will look back over a 3-5 year period; however, with multiple records affected, it’s hard to say just how long a DUI will continue to impact your insurance costs. The good news is that you may see your premium rates begin to drop after the look-back period ends.
Meanwhile, you can concentrate on following the rules set forth by the courts after your DUI conviction. Don’t let your SR-22 insurance lapse, as this will be reported to the state immediately and will most likely reset your time to carry this high-risk badge.
Where to Find Low-Cost California DUI Car Insurance Coverage
Everybody makes mistakes. At Freeway Insurance, we aren’t here to judge you. As you put your life back together after a DUI conviction in California, you’ll need auto insurance you can afford. We can help you with that.